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We Are Called

Tuesday, February 04, 2020 by Kevin Fitzsimmons

Alliance for Catholic Education - We Are Called 

“Go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And preach as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without pay, give without pay.” – Matthew 10:6-8

One of my favorite Catholic hymns is “We Are Called.” (Maybe you have heard it at an ACE Mass or two?)

A staple in the Gather Hymnal, this is one that I would belt out even when I was a self-absorbed middle school boy, concerned with what all my peers thought about me. Over time, and as my faith matured, I grew more attentive to the lyrics of the hymns, and in “We Are Called” there’s a clear theme. It’s about others and how we should act toward them.

Act with justice.

Love tenderly.

Serve one another.

Falling in Love with Service

Monday, February 03, 2020 by John T. McCarthy IV - ACE Intern and member of ACE 27

This post is authored by John T. McCarthy IV, an ACE Teaching Fellows Intern and member of ACE 27. A Science Pre-professional and Theology major at the University of Notre Dame, John will graduate in May of 2020. 

John McCarthy - Falling in Love with Service 

ACE first appeared on my radar the summer after my freshman year, when the well-known Father Joe Corpora found out that I was going to be on campus during the summer and asked me to work for him. 

During that summer, I took classes and helped Fr. Joe with all the miscellaneous things that have to be done to smoothly run conferences for ACE like the Latino Enrollment Institute and the School Pastors’ Institute. 

A Frassati Intern's Experience in LA

Wednesday, January 15, 2020 by Kateri Budo - Frassati Fellow, Cohort 2

frassatikaateriblog 1

“I hopped off the plane at LAX with a dream and my cardigan” …

Well not exactly, but that didn't stop me from humming this tune when I first arrived in Los Angeles for my internship with the Specialty Family Foundation this past summer.

I had a lot of thoughts about what the Frassati Internship would entail, but, to be honest, I didn’t know what exactly to expect.  

A Hesitation, and a Jump

Tuesday, December 17, 2019 by Andrew Hamaty, C.S.C. - ACE 22 Mission

Andrew Hamaty CSC - A Hesitation, and a Jump

“Umm... sure.”

A hesitation, and a jump. This was my response to my principal on the way home from school one warm Wednesday evening when he asked if I could cover an extra class for CCD—8th grade girls. I wanted to make a good impression on my principal, and since it was a slower week, I figured an extra hour wouldn’t kill me. After I hesitated, I said yes.

Arizona ACE Teachers Participate in Regional Retreat

Monday, December 09, 2019

Many people who are familiar with ACE Teaching Fellows have probably heard a thing or two about our December Retreat, a time for all our teachers, faculty, and team members to gather near Austin, Texas for a weekend of spiritual, communal, and professional nourishment. 

What some people might not be aware of is the fact that our team regularly travels around the country to offer regional retreats for our ACE Teachers. Fr. Lou DelFra, Fr. Joe Carey, and members of the Pastoral Team plan and deliver approximately 10 such retreats each year.

Members of the ACE communities from Phoenix and Tucson were part of a recent retreat to the Chapel of the Holy Cross in Sedona, Arizona. 

I Am Thankful for...Spirituality

Thursday, November 28, 2019 by Alaina Owen - ACE 25, Tucson

This is the third and final post in a series from ACE teachers that center around the pillars of teaching, community, and spirituality. It is authored by Alaina Owen, a member of ACE 25 in Tucson and focuses on her gratitude toward the spiritual nourishment she has received on campus and at her ACE school.

I am thankful for Spirituality - Alaina Owen ACE 25

This Thanksgiving, I thank God for the opportunity to join ACE Teaching Fellows and the spiritual formation I have received from the program. When I was first admitted to ACE and was told that I would be teaching high school biology and chemistry in Tucson, I had to trust in God’s plan for me. I chose to take the leap of faith and move to a new city across the country to teach students who were only a few years younger than me. While I was incredibly nervous at the beginning, I have learned so much more about myself and my faith throughout these past two years.

I Am Thankful for...Teaching

Thursday, November 21, 2019 by Andy Miles - ACE 24, Philadelphia

This is the second post in a series from ACE teachers that center around the pillars of teaching, community, and spirituality. It is authored by Andy Miles, a member of ACE 24 in Philadelphia and focuses on his gratitude toward the vocation of teaching.

I am thankful for teaching - Andy Miles ACE 24 Philadelphia

The pretzel salt was everywhere.

No matter how many times I swept my classroom after school, a new layer of salt dust seemed to coat the checkered tile floor each morning. It was beneath the corners of the rug in the back and within the pages of textbooks kept inside the desks. My housemates may claim I exaggerate, but I think I even once found pretzel salt in my shoes when I returned to our row house at the end of a long day.

I Am Thankful for...Community

Thursday, November 14, 2019 by Maria Lynch (ACE 19, ENL 13)

Throughout this month of gratitude, we will be publishing a series of blog posts from ACE teachers that center around the pillars of teaching, community, and spirituality. The following post is authored by Maria Lynch (ACE 19, ENL 13) and focuses on the love that she felt from her ACE Plaquemine community, as well as how she continues to witness transformational moments with a new community in Denver, Colorado.

Maria Lynch - ACE 19, Plaquemine - I am Thankful for Community


Smile - you paid for this.

A heckler with a sense of humor waved this sign at me as I passed the eleventh mile marker of a recent half marathon. Touché, dude.

I’m Already a Teacher…Now What?

Monday, November 11, 2019 by Kenna Arana

Paths for current Catholic school teachers

Since its founding in 1993, the Alliance for Catholic Education has been committed to serving Catholic schools by forming talented individuals into the next generation of school leaders, expanding access to high-performing Catholic schools, and enhancing the high-quality education that Catholic schools have historically provided.

Each year, the ACE Teaching Fellows program welcomes approximately 90 talented, faith-filled college graduates to enter formation as beginning teachers. For those who already serve as skillful teachers, ACE offers a variety of programs to foster their continued growth as educators and leaders.

Below, find an introduction to some of the programs that are strengthening and transforming Catholic schools across the country.

Morning Meetings: Start Your Day with the Right Energy!

Friday, October 25, 2019 by by: Casey Harris —ACE 25, Washington, DC

Casey Harris - Morning Meeting

My morning meetings are a time for the students in my homeroom to start their morning with the right energy. Over the course of our morning meeting, students:

  • Greet each other
  • Share something
  • Complete an activity

Students have ownership and are allowed to come up with certain parts of the meeting, but the structure always remains the same.

An effective morning meeting allows my students to learn new things about their classmates and teachers, while creating a place that is safe and welcoming.

Casey Harris - Morning Meetings

Is ACE What's Next for Me?

Thursday, October 10, 2019 by Kenna Arana

Is ACE What's Next for Me? Alliance for Catholic Education Notre Dame

For teachers and students, October marks the definitive end of the back-to-school season and the novelty of another school year. By this time, teachers and students are settling into the routines they worked so hard to set up in September. In October, pencils, erasers, and paper supplies–and sometimes patience–are starting to wear down, and teachers are working hard to keep momentum going with renewed energy and joy.

An Intersection of Acronyms: My Experiences with ACE, AICSN, and ESS

Thursday, September 26, 2019 by By: Collin Gortner '20 - ACE 27

Collin Gortner - Education, Schooling, and Society/American Indian Catholic Schools Network

Like many students at the University of Notre Dame, acronyms have been a big part of my educational experience. 

A Mississippi-sized Love: Stories from ACErs on the Coast

Monday, September 23, 2019 by Grace Carroll and Emily Voorde, ACE 22, Biloxi

As for many newly-minted ACErs on placement night when they find out where they will be teaching for the next two years, our pictures on the cardboard trifolds next to the label “ACE Biloxi” elicited a flood of surprise and giddiness and questions.  

Biloxi? 
Are they sure?? 
Am I even saying it correctly?!

We Have A Situation!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 by By: Sheila Doyle - ACE 24, Denver

Sheila Doyle Blog

Procedures, procedures, procedures! As new teachers, we hear this word repeated over and over. 

“Make sure you have procedures ready to go for day 1!” 

“What are your procedures for recess, lunch, Mass, lining up, transitioning to the carpet, transitioning to the desks, rotating between centers, turning assignments in, walking through the hallway, packing up at the end of the day, cleaning up at the end of the week?”

Creating a Welcoming Classroom Culture

Tuesday, September 03, 2019 by Elizabeth Eby - ACE 25, LA South Cental

ACE Blog Post - Creating a Welcoming Classroom Culture

“Ms. Eby, you’ve never had Tajín?” 

     “You just HAVE to try Wingstop!”     

          “Do you have Starbucks in New Hampshire?”

During my first year with ACE at Our Lady of Guadalupe in East Los Angeles, my middle school students were continually shocked, and rather amused, by my ignorance of the places, foods, and traditions they found commonplace in LA.

I grew up in New Hampshire, where I shoveled snow, celebrated maple syrup season, and ice skated on frozen lakes in February. New Hampshire was as unfamiliar to my students as LA was to me.

I was initially unsure about how we were going to relate given our different cultural upbringings, but I ultimately decided to lean into these differences so that my students could teach me about their experiences, and I could share my own.

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