Student Awards

Every year, we celebrate exceptional students at the awards assembly. Congratulations to the award winners for the 2022-23 school year!

The ExCEL Award

The Excellence in Community, Education, and Leadership Award recognizes two junior students who are active in school activities, leaders in their schools and who demonstrate a strong commitment to community service.

The first recipient, Lauren Bengtson '24, has excelled in three sports at CDH as well as band. She is a three sport varsity athlete in girls soccer, girls basketball, and girls golf. She is a captain of the girls basketball team and earned an all-conference selection this past season. She has also been a leader in the classroom with a 4.01 GPA. Lastly, she has been a three year member of the CDH Band where she plays the saxophone.

Our second recipient, Miles Bollinger '24, has excelled in three sports at CDH as well as numerous volunteer opportunities. He is a three sport varsity athlete in football, boys basketball, and boys golf. He earned an all-conference selection this past season in boys basketball as well as a 2X all-conference golfer and a state qualifier in 2021. He has also been a leader in the classroom with a 4.09 GPA. Lastly, he is the starting QB for the football team and led volunteer opportunities such as “Toys for Tots” where he and several other student-athletes assembled bikes at Mauer Chevrolet.

Triple “A” Award

The Triple “A” Award honors two senior students for their achievements in academics, the arts, and athletics.  

The first recipient, Tavary Un '23, is a standout in the classroom, and carries a 4.17 GPA while excelling in extra curricular activities including being a major part of the theater department and the numerous productions that are put on each year. She has also been a key member of the girls tennis team and girls basketball team during her time at CDH.

The next recipient, Josh Ojo '23, has excelled in the classroom with a 3.36 GPA. He has also excelled in choir, football, and basketball in his two years at CDH. He was named captain of the football team this past season and has been a standout with the CDH Choir traveling to several out of state competitions. As a member of the basketball team he was an outstanding team player who was reliable and a key part of the team’s success.

Athena Award

The Athena Award is given to one senior female athlete who has distinguished herself in superior achievements in one or more sports, while also excelling academically and contributing to their community.

The Athena Award recipient, Anna Stangler '23, has been a 3X captain of the girls lacrosse team as well as captain of the girls soccer team. She has earned multiple all-conference selections as well as academic all-state. Anna has also demonstrated excellence in the classroom with a 4.34 GPA. A 2022 ExCel award winner, she is also a member of the National Honor Society, PFP (People Finding People), and the Sustainability Club. In her free time, she volunteers at the Gillette Children's Hospital.

Service Academy Appointment

Every year, several CDH students volunteer to serve their country by joining the military. Some enlist to serve on Active-Duty, in the National Guard, or the Reserves.  Some seek ROTC scholarships at colleges - both locally and across the country.  One of the most challenging routes a student can take is to obtain a Congressional nomination and appointment to one of our Nation’s service academies. These include the Army at West Point, Navy at Annapolis, Air Force in Colorado Springs, or the Coast Guard in New London.

There are currently 5 CDH graduates attending these institutions obtaining a first rate education while training to protect and defend the United States of America.  This year we are proud to announce that Simon Houge '23 has achieved this accomplishment and will attend the United States Air Force Academy where he will join Brigadier General Paul Moga '91, who is the Commandant. 

National Merit Scholarship Program

Approximately 1.5 million high school students took the PSAT as juniors in October of 2022. Of the 1.5 million students, 3% or 35,000, are Commended Scholars. We are pleased this year to recognize 5 commended students: Nicholas Collins '23, Isabella Keating '23, Morgan Redden '23, Natalie Seng '23 and Mary Soltis '23.

Robert Stupka III Science Scholarships 

The Robert Stupka III Science Scholarships were established in memory of Robbie Stupka III '02, CDH Class of 2002. This scholarship is awarded to two juniors who demonstrate the same love for science and the scientific process as Robbie did. 

​​The first recipient, Kai Bodden '24, is one of the most insightful students in AP chemistry. He is never one to loudly assert himself, and he quietly, and confidently, understands presented material and is able to perceive the applications of new concepts and how they fold into previous understanding. One of his strongest assets is his resilience in solving problems. His great AP Chemistry experience is a result of his strong efforts and those efforts should propel him forward in any future STEM endeavors.

The next recipient, Ariana Awiszus '24, is one of the most motivated, intelligent, and hard-working STEM students! She takes every opportunity to grow and learn and she never backs down from a challenge.  She has a passion for STEM and learning, which will take her wherever she wants to go in the future. She is a very innovative, creative, and determined problem-solver and will be a great asset to any STEM program she decides to pursue.

Kopp Family Foundation Scholarship

The Kopp Family Foundation Scholarship recognizes two seniors graduating from Cretin-Derham Hall each year. These scholarships are given to students who consistently work up to their academic ability, are of high character, are consistently positive in their dealings with others, are involved in service activities at CDH and their community. They are leaders by example and have a positive impact on those around them. 

Our first recipient, Nick Collins '23, is a senior who challenges himself academically, taking many of the most challenging classes that CDH has to offer including Calc B/C, AP Microeconomics, AP Physics, and the list goes on. He is a very active member of the CDH Student Council, with a special passion for student mental health. He is helping to organize a senior gift from the Class of 2023 that will be donated to CDH upon their graduation in gratitude for their experience at CDH. He works quietly, but effectively and cares deeply about his peers and about CDH.  

Our second recipient, Greta Cunningham '23, also holds a GPA well over 4.0 and takes as challenging a schedule as CDH has. She is a dedicated PFP mentor, member of the ski club, the Chronicle, and Mock Trial. She is a key member of the student council, responsible for communications and dedicated to making CDH a better place for everyone. She has a strong commitment to social justice issues as evidenced by her leadership in the Sustainability Club, among many other things. She is thoughtful, strong, committed and compassionate.

Sister Mary Aloysius Sherin, CSJ Scholarship

The Sister Mary Aloysius Scholarship was established in honor of this beloved math teacher to honor a female junior student who has demonstrated significant achievement in math.

This year’s recipient, Bridget Commers '24, is a phenomenal math student. In the classroom, she is curious and engaged – always willing to offer an insight or suggest a way to solve a problem. She is quick to grasp how to work with the material in class, but is never satisfied until she also understands why the process works. She is a valuable member of the Math Team as well as co-captain. 

Len Horyza Memorial Scholarships 

The Len Horyza Memorial Scholarship honors this namesake who was a teacher, coach and mentor at Cretin High School and Cretin-Derham Hall for 35 years. Mr. Horyza emulated leadership, perseverance and commitment.

The first recipient of this award, Miles Bollinger '24, comes from the boys basketball team. He is hard-working and enjoys balancing school, athletics, and family. He is a great teammate and deeply cares about others. He is the type of student-athlete that Coach Horyza would be proud to coach on the floor and teach in the classroom. This student is a true leader in every sense of the word.

The next recipient, Lillian Moore '24, is tremendously dedicated to AP Calculus. Her enthusiasm, hard work, and determination are second to none. She makes a concerted effort to thoroughly understand all of the topics studied, and she comes in frequently to make sure she has a good grasp of the material.

Derham Hall Carondelet Awards 

The Derham Hall Carondelet Student Leadership Endowment was created by Derham Hall alumnae to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the founding of Derham Hall High School. Two young women from the junior class are selected and, with this recognition, receive a tuition discount of 45% for their senior year. 

The first recipient, Calla Massari '24, is a strong leader both in and outside the classroom. She thinks critically and creatively and asks questions. She is kind and generous and very passionate about social justice. She offers hospitality to all around her and has shared her gifts with the community through our prayer services.

This next recipient, Allysa Edomaruseh '24, holds the space around her with grace and patience. She is a deep thinker and a quiet leader. Her leadership comes through her contributions both in and outside of the classroom. She leads often by example and is usually the first person to pose a question in class and often the first to volunteer to answer a question as well. She embraces creativity through writing and art and has shared her gifts with the community through our diversity, equity, and inclusion assemblies.

Greg Marzolf, Jr. Scholarship Award

The Greg Marzolf, Jr. Scholarship was established in 2000 in memory of Greg Marzolf, Jr., CDH class of 1998.  Greg died in the spring of his sophomore year at the University of St. Thomas after a long battle with Duchene Muscular Dystrophy.  He lived positively, with determination and faith, empowering others to do the same. This award is given annually to a Cretin-Derham Hall junior who embodies similar traits to Greg.  This scholarship acknowledges a student who has shown academic achievement and co-curricular participation while dealing with adversity and has shown perseverance and a positive spirit.  

This year’s winner of the Greg Marzolf, Jr. Scholarship is Nathan Leber '24. Nathan was born with Spina Bifida which occurs when the spine and spinal cord do not form properly. This can lead to a loss of mobility which is why Nathan uses a wheelchair. In addition, Nathan has hydrocephalus which is when cerebrospinal fluid builds up in the brain causing swelling and putting pressure on other parts of the brain. This can cause headaches and nausea. In order to relieve the pressure, Nathan has a shunt that drains the fluid from his brain. 

Despite these challenges, Nathan embraces all that CDH has to offer academically, athletically, and socially. One of Nathan’s teachers described him as an “exceptionally hard worker” who “comes on time, prepared for class, and focuses on the tasks at hand.” Nathan is also a member of the Boys’ Swimming and Diving team. His coach, Mike Steineman, says “Nate is a hard worker.  He does not let his limitations prevent him from doing anything. He joins his teammates in the Fitness Center and is at swim practice everyday. He has the best flip turns on our team and he has very limited movement of his lower body. We routinely have him show all of our other swimmers how we want their turns to look because his are exceptional due to his tremendous core strength!.” Outside of the pool, Nathan has a tight group of friends who can be found laughing and enjoying themselves over an intense game of UNO at the lunch table or after school. Despite some physical limitations, Nathan has found ways to make his own space in order to become a confident and successful student at Cretin-Derham Hall. Mr. Kenny sums it up well, saying that Nathan “truly upholds what it is to be a Raider through his hard work, kindness, and perseverance.

Lepsche Family Award 

The Lepsche Family Award recognizes one junior male student in honor of Ray Lepsche, Jr., Class of 1966. This scholarship recognizes a student who is kind and loves being a member of the Cretin-Derham Hall community.  

This year’s award goes to Isaac Garcia '24, a wonderful student whose mission is to be a blessing to those in need. He has taken it upon himself to start his own non-profit to assist the homeless community. This nonprofit organization, called Isaac’s Blessing Bags, provides our un-sheltered relatives with the resources and necessities they need to help them through their time of transition.

Harvey Buron Spirit Award 

The Harvey Buron Spirit Award recognizes the male athlete that best exemplifies dedication, hard work, and positive attitude.

This year’s recipient, Adam Tauer '23, has signed to play D1 basketball at the University of St. Thomas. He was a three year varsity athlete in both basketball and soccer and is a two time Suburban East All-Conference Player and has been selected to play in the MBCA State All-Star Game in April. He has established himself as a true leader in his class and is always a great friend who treats everyone with tremendous respect. He has earned 6 varsity letters and is a team captain - truly a fine young man we can all be proud of.

McDonough Spirit Award

The McDonough Spirit Award recognizes the female athlete who best exemplifies hard work and a positive attitude. 

This year’s McDonough Spirit Award recipient, Morgan Redden '23 has played tennis for five years and was the first 8th grader ever allowed to play for Cretin-Derham Hall. She quickly became our top player in her final two years and finished 4th and 3rd in sections. She is the team captain who exemplifies hard work, dedication, and positivity.

Raider Awards 

The Raider Awards are presented to one female and one male who exemplify the ideals of the positive spirit of sport and the core mission of athletics at Cretin-Derham Hall.

The first recipient, Charlie Cantwell '23, is someone who does whatever is asked on both the ice and the field. He plays his assigned role and pushes himself to be the best at it. He supports his teammates through the good and the bad and has stepped up in some of the biggest moments this year. 

The second recipient, Ava Junker '23, is a captain and leader on the volleyball team. She has a phenomenal attitude and is one of the most teachable and adaptable players. She is always willing to do what is asked of her and is an excellent student as well. 

Padden Award

The Padden Award is presented in honor of James Padden, a 1948 graduate of Cretin High School who died in the Korean War.  The recipient of the Padden Award is a male student who demonstrates excellence in athletics, attitude, and academics. 

This year's Padden Award recipient, Jake Fisher '23 was a finalist for Mr. Hockey and the Pioneer Press Player of the Year. Additionally, he was first team all-metro in both papers. He was selected by the conference coaches as the SEC Offensive player of the year. He was a senior captain and lettered all four years. He played in over 100 games and had 170 points. Lastly, he is projected to go in the 4-7 round of this year’s NHL draft.

Hugh Derham Award

The Hugh Derham Award is presented in honor of Hugh Derham - the first benefactor of Derham Hall High School. It is presented annually to the female who demonstrates excellence in all three areas of athletics, attitude, and academics. 

This year’s recipient, Anna Stangler '23, is captain of both the girls soccer and girls lacrosse teams. In soccer, she has earned 4 varsity letters, All Academic All State and All Conference. In Lacrosse she also has 4 varsity letters along with All Academic All American, All Section, All Academic All State, All Conference, and Rookie of the Year.

Excellence in Fine Arts 

This award was established to honor seniors who have done extensive and excellent work across several Fine Arts disciplines. This year, two students will be honored for their deserving contributions and excellence in Fine Arts.

This first recipient, Ream Hashel '23, is a quiet, yet powerful, influence on the CDH Music Program. She is a go-getter and a high-achiever with tremendous artistry and integrity, who asks for no recognition, but certainly deserves it. This student has performed extensively with the CDH Band, lent her skill as a violinist to the CDH Choir, and has spent time studying in other artistic areas, like Ceramics. More than just that, this student spends a great deal of time outside of school honing her craft. She studies her instrument with a private instructor weekly, and performs with the top ensemble available through the Minnesota Youth Symphonies - a highly prestigious Minnesota musical organization. Her work ethic, experience, attitude, contribution, and humility are all traits that exemplify what it means to be an excellent musician and artist. 

This next recipient, Justice Linton '23, discovered ceramics as a Sophomore. He immediately dove in, and over the past 3 years he has created 1000's of pieces and spent countless hours immersing himself in making art. He won second place in the CDH Visual Art Student show in May of 2022 and his piece "Dreams and Nightmares" received an honorable mention in the MN Scholastic High School Art Competition earlier this year. Although he has enrolled in and taken other fine art classes he shines in pottery. He leads by example and has become an inspiration and resource for many art students. His familiarity and devotion in the studio is unmatched. His ability to self start, try new concepts, and learn new techniques is inspiring. 

Top Ten Graduates

Congratulations to the top ten students in the Class of 2023!

1. Valedictorian: Greta Cunningham

2. Salutatorian: Anna Stangler

3. Nicholas Collins

4. Robert Diamond 

5. Natalie Seng

6. Mary Soltis

7. Lauren Bullis 

8. Morgan Redden

9. Collett Akins

10. Isabella Keating

Mother Seraphine Ireland Award 

Ellen Ireland was the oldest daughter in the Ireland family. She immigrated with her family, including her brother, John, to the United States and settled in Saint Paul in 1852.

Blessed with a combination of intelligence, warmth, humility, wit and common sense, Ellen joined the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Carondelet and was given the name, Sister Seraphine. By age 30, Sister Seraphine was appointed Superior (“Mother”) and served the province for 39 years. Believing that education leads to social transformation, she established 30 parochial schools, five hospitals, and forty-eight (48) learning institutions, including Saint Catherine’s University and Derham Hall.

Honoring the contributions of Mother Seraphine, Cretin-Derham Hall recognizes one senior young woman for her faith (zeal), leadership, integrity, commitment to service and social justice. She receives this distinction having been chosen by her peers.

The 2023 Recipient of the Mother Seraphine Ireland Award is Natalie Seng '23. Natalie has been chosen by her peers because she is genuine and sincere in every aspect of her life. She has high respect for everyone and supports others in being the best they can be. She approaches the people in her life with a fierce tenderness and knows how to hold a safe space for others. She has a special gift and grace for the elders at her fieldwork site. She truly serves for the greater common good. For these reasons and so much more Natalie embodies the passion and leadership of Mother Seraphine.

Archbishop John Ireland Award 

With his sister, Ellen, John Ireland experienced the expansion of the Minnesota Territory during his childhood. Ordained a priest in 1861, he became the chaplain for the 5 th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War in 1862.

Returning to Saint Paul, he became Rector of the Cathedral of Saint Paul and was appointed the first archbishop in 1888. Archbishop Ireland’s ideas for social reform and the relationship between church and society left profound outcomes. Specifically he established Saint Thomas Academy, the Saint Paul Seminary, and the University of Saint Thomas.

Honoring the contributions of Archbishop Ireland, Cretin-Derham Hall recognizes one outstanding young senior for his faith (zeal), leadership, integrity and commitment to service and social justice. He receives this distinction having been chosen by his peers.

The 2023 Recipient of the Archbishop John Ireland Award is Will Ek '23. Will was chosen by his peers because he is a leader in the CDH community. He leads with purpose and compassion. He cares about his classmates and the school as a whole.  He truly wants to make CDH and his community a better place. He gives of his time with little to no reservations. He is extremely strong in his faith and models what Christ does in so many situations. He is by no means a saint, but for his age and place in the world right now, he is truly a model of what a Christian should be. Congratulations Will!