Written by Janis Dotzler, Class of 1987
From left to right, Janis (1987) and Pat (1987) Dotzler, Nick (2013), Maddie (2015) and at the center Jack (2020)
Favorite subject in high school
I loved all of my classes but I had so much fun in Mrs. Jones’ home ec classes and learned a ton in Mr. Krueger’s research class. It was hard, but it made me a better student.
Favorite teacher from high school, why?
It’s hard to pick my favorite teacher since so many were really good and so dedicated, but I think it’s a tie between Mr. Schlueter and Mr. Wirth. I spent a lot of time with Schlueter for volleyball and student council (now student government) stuff. We would recount and laugh at the previous night’s David Letterman show. So fun! And Mr. Wirth made us think in so many different ways. He helped us grow as young adults.
Favorite Roncalli Catholic tradition or memory from high school?
I will never forget when I was student council president and I wanted so badly to order new spirit wear to sell in the bookstore but we had to sell the horrible polyester stuff that was leftover from the 70s first. It was terrible. So we decided to have a fashion show and “model” the yucky 70s polyester stuff at the lunch periods. We actually walked across the tables doing our best to drum up business to sell that stuff. ☺ It was so funny and kids actually bought the disgusting clothes as a joke!
What activities did you take part in during high school?
I was on the volleyball team, student council, National Honor Society, prom-planning committee, and many other clubs (can’t remember them all after so many years!)
Why did you become involved in the Alumni Committee?
I wanted to be more involved in the Alumni Committee because I love this school and want to remain involved in it once my last child graduates. It is important to me that Roncalli Catholic alumni find out how great their school is and know that Roncalli Catholic has grown so much from when they were there…maybe not in numbers so much but in so many other ways. They need to come home to visit and see the great changes that have happened since they were roaming the halls.
What is special to you about Roncalli Catholic?
It is home with a HUGE family I love. You cannot walk through the doors without being greeted warmly and feeling loved. My three kids received not only a stellar education that has helped them become successful adults, but they also had teachers, administrators, and staff who truly cared about them. I love that the school is small and not one kid gets lost in the shuffle. All students can be involved in any activity they want. But most of all, I love this Roncalli Catholic tribe that is my second family. You will find some of the teachers and coaches hanging out with the parents and students as comfortably as your own family would. You do not get that anywhere else! I genuinely look forward to seeing all of the kids and families at sporting events and other gatherings.
What is it like to be back at Roncalli Catholic as a parent?
Being a parent at Roncalli Catholic is so fun!! We have an amazing group of friends whose kids are friends with ours. I love that we have teachers/coaches who care enough about our kids to take them camping to create team bonding, or who give up their weekend and own money to rebuild the stage so a student’s power chair can safely be on stage in the musical, or a principal who sits with you at the hospital while your son has emergency surgery in the middle of the night seven hours from home. We are blessed to be part of the awesome Roncalli Catholic family!
How did Roncalli Catholic impact your life?
Roncalli Catholic impacted my life in so many ways. If I had not gone to Roncalli Catholic, I would not have been able to be involved in so many activities which helped me earn a scholarship to college. Without that scholarship, I would not have gone to college and would not have been able to fulfill my dream of becoming a teacher. Now I am in year 28 of teaching thanks to Roncalli Catholic and the great teachers I had there who were inspirations for me. I also would not have met my husband, Pat, and had our amazing kids. I made lifelong friends and connections that I treasure. I will always cherish my time at RCHS.