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Dear BropHy Community,

As a Jesuit school, you might say intellectual competence, one of the tenets of the grad at grad, is built into our DNA. After all, the Jesuits who first began what would become one of the greatest teaching vocations in the modern world were highly educated and that scholarship continues — Jesuits are scientists, engineers, writers, historians, theologians, philosophers and mathematicians. A focus on academics and lifelong learning coupled with deep spiritual formation has made a Jesuit education a formidable tool in forming young people who are intellectually curious, can think critically, and are competent and ethical leaders.

At Brophy, learning is not confined to just a classroom — Brophy students continue developing intellectual competence through a variety of co-curricular activities. To recall the origin of Jesuit education once again, its genesis coincided with the Renaissance; thus, it’s no surprise that it coalesced as a multi-dimensional Renaissance education.

Our Innovation Commons, an 11,500 square-foot maker space, is not only busy during class periods — there is a near-constant hum of activity from early morning through late afternoon. There you’ll find students involved with Broncobotics (robotics club), rocketry (Brophy is home to the largest rocketry club in the state), CubeSat (an effort to put a satellite into space to study valley fever) and other STEM-based clubs as lessons learned in the classroom advance toward the real world of research and development.

Additionally, Brophy’s “mathletes” take part in increasingly challenging competitions as they continue developing their love of mathematics, becoming competitive at the highest levels nationally. And since 2017, the Brophy Science Journal, a student publication with content and design based on professional science journals, has documented the many award-winning STEM projects and real-world partnerships with institutes like TGen, Barrows and Creighton Medical School that add to the student learning experience.

Speaking of publications, Brophy hosts a stable of student-run publications. The Roundup is Brophy’s long-time, award-winning student newspaper and continues to publish both print and online. The staff learn newswriting, editing, reporting, layout and design, and photojournalism. The writers at The Wrangler, Brophy’s satire newspaper, delight in coming up with nimble alternative takes on school life, and BLAM (Brophy Literary and Arts Magazine) is a tour de force of writing and art created, curated and designed by students.

Speech and Debate, Mock Trial, Model United Nations, Stock Market Club, Young Entrepreneurs, Brophy Law Review, Quiz Bowl and many other co-curriculars extend classroom learning and develop invaluable skills.

And sometimes, rather than a class launching a co-curricular activity, an activity launches a class. The Student Climate Coalition’s extensive research on the benefits of solar energy, ways to make the cafeteria more sustainable, and its work for environmental rights launched the Ecological Justice Leadership class. Plus, Brophy’s many student advocacy efforts propelled the formation of the Romero Program, a senior-level course that places students at nonprofit internships two days a week, helping them hone leadership skills and address community challenges.

Check out the profiles on The Roundup and Math Club in this issue. I’m proud of the many co-curricular initiatives that so effectively enhance learning here, and grateful to our faculty and staff members who, as club moderators, share their knowledge and time so generously with our students. In both the classroom and co-curriculars, we remain focused on pushing toward the frontiers of learning — a commitment that has been synonymous with Jesuit education for five centuries.

AMDG,

Jim Bopp
Principal

"At Brophy, learning is not confined to just a classroom — Brophy students continue developing intellectual competence through a variety of co-curricular activities."

Co-Curricular Profile: Math Club

Moderator: Leah McNamara

Photos by Kathy Mabry

large group of boys with female teacher in the middle

Math Club is the co-curricular home to approximately 20 mathletes this year with about half of them regularly entering competitions. Many of the students are active in other STEM activities as well, especially robotics, according to Ms. McNamara.

Each November, Math Club members take the AMC (American Mathematics Competitions) exam, an individual exam that allows students to qualify for state and national exams. In 2022–23, three students made it all the way to the national level — Shaan Keole ’24, Doer He ’25 and Ming Yang ’25. At nationals, Shaan took second place in the 11th grade division and Ming took third place in the 10th grade division.

Math Club also participates in MathLeague events, a team-based competition held on Sunday afternoons. Ms. McNamara notes that during these competitions, 10–15 students will gather at Brophy to work, via Zoom, on problems with all the other groups who are also competing.

Ms. McNamara states, “One of the things that I think is really important is that students see that academic material can be fun and competitive, just like a sport. They learn a lot and really build their problem-solving skills, and they have a lot of fun doing it. And they win a lot!” She continues, “I was really good at math in high school and I constantly hoped I could have a ‘cooler’ talent like sports or theater or art. I never want these boys to feel like that. I like that they learn that their really great math skills are absolutely worth celebrating.”

Co-Curricular Profile: The Roundup

Moderator: Jake Kelly ’09

Photos Courtesy of The Roundup

large group of students standing together smiling

The Roundup has been published for more than 70 years, having started in 1952 when Brophy reopened. The 1956 yearbook states that “the paper has been mimeographed, but the staff hopes to have printed issues in the future.” In 1967, the newspaper announced it was turning “pro” and “leaving offset printing for the slicker letterpress method.” The Roundup of 1969 proudly claimed to be “controversial,” almost causing a lawsuit and forcing “Fr. Freitas to issue a rebuttal over the P.A.”

By 1982, guided by Fr. John Becker, SJ, the paper had a full-fledged editorial staff as well as an illustrator and typesetter. Sports editor Tom Blodgett ’82 went on to work in local news and teach at Walter Cronkite School of Journalism. Decades later, in 2019, former Roundup editor, Andrew Howard ’17, the editor of ASU’s The State Press at the time, broke a national news story when the special envoy to Ukraine abruptly resigned his job with the state department and Andrew got the scoop, ending up a newsmaker himself on the pages of the New York Times and other major newspapers.

Today, The Roundup is a thriving student newspaper that publishes five professionally printed editions a year, plus offers a digital version on its website at roundup.brophyprep.org. It includes news, entertainment, sports and opinion sections, as well as a podcast. The main staffers are the students in Mr. Jake Kelly’s journalism class, with about 10 additional contributors. As moderator, Mr. Kelly tries to not only help the staff develop journalism skills, but to also discuss the nature of journalism and its role in a healthy democracy.

During the 2022–23 school year The Roundup took first place for print newspapers and second for online newspapers from the Arizona Interscholastic Press Association. In 2017, it won a prestigious National Scholastic Press Association Pacemaker Award. A free press remains part of the bedrock of democracy and future journalists are getting top-notch training at Brophy.