Recently, Notre Dame Prep launched a new Capital Campaign under the banner, Honor Tradition, Value Change, Fund Her Future. As prelude to the campaign, I conducted separate interviews with quite a few members of the greater NDP community about what Notre Dame means to them and why they think it’s important to assure her future. Those interviewed come from all walks of life and socio-economic strata, and span nearly a century of generations. Included among them are alumnae, parents (current and past), trustees, faculty, newcomers to the NDP family, and diehard loyalists who have been around long enough to witness NDP’s remarkable and ongoing evolution. And to a person, in one way or another, they all said the same thing:
Notre Dame Prep is one of a kind.
Now, if even one person had described Notre Dame that way, it would be noteworthy. But when that sentiment is independently echoed by so many, it bears repeating:
Notre Dame Prep is one of a kind.
The consensus is that while other schools pay lip service to the concepts of mission, academic excellence, and student care, and pursue them to one degree or another, no other school – male, female, or coed – is as dedicated as Notre Dame is to living the concepts on a daily basis or to integrating the concepts so holistically into every thing it does. The NDP mission statement is quite simple, actually:
Notre Dame is a school where girls become women who will transform the world.
Simple, yes. Easy, no. Yet that is what NDP dedicates itself to day in and day out. And according to an awful lot of people…it shows. In big and small ways. On a daily basis and over time. In and outside of Notre Dame. In the community and yes, even around the world. As one interviewee said, “No matter where I am, I recognize another NDP girl when I encounter her. There’s a sensibility about her…she is thoughtful, concerned, engaged…”
So just how do academic excellence, a justice driven mission, and the nurture of individual potential combine to make the world a better place?
Well, you can’t transform the world if you don’t have the knowledge, skills or tools to do so. NDP provides ample opportunity in and outside the classroom, academically and extracurricularly to develop those skills. That’s why they are so dedicated to new and innovative programs, to STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math), and to the humanities.
You can’t transform the world if you are not first made aware of the needs of the world. No school offers as many opportunities to serve as NDP does. Service projects have taken NDP students from the comfort of their beautiful campus into the inner city of Baltimore, to rural poverty pockets in Mississippi, to the jungles of Costa Rica, and the villages of El Salvador, to name but a few.
You can’t transform the world if you are not confident, empowered, and yes, happy to do so. At NDP, every student is challenged to be her best while at the same time nurtured to believe in herself. It’s a winning combination that develops confident, joyful, young women. One of the interviewees said, “I never stop by Notre Dame or walk its halls that I am not completely impressed with how happy the girls seem.”
And lastly, you can’t transform the world if you don’t in some way represent it. NDP knows how important diversity – socio-economic, cultural, and racial diversity – is to its future and wants to do everything in its power to give every girl who has a burning desire to attend NDP the opportunity to do so.
This campaign is not about bricks and mortar. And yet, it couldn’t be more substantive. It is about increasing the endowment so that Notre Dame can give as much money in financial aid as is needed. It is about maintaining its program of academic excellence. And most importantly, it is about continuing its mission. Now and in the future. And for every generation. If ever there were a time to “pay it forward,”…now is that time.
For more information, please contact the Office of Advancement.