March 17, 2016 â€¢ Volume: 2015-16, Issue 5
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Message from the Alumni Board

Alumni Participation in Symposium

​The annual Symposium brought over 30 presenters to campus on February 26. After a presentation titled “A Co-Curricular Life” by Joe Boucher, students in grades 8-12 enjoyed a day learning about engineering, communications, theater improv, diseases, ink wash painting, physical therapy, meteorites, interior design, cake decorating, solving ethical dilemmas, and much more.

Participation in Symposium is a way to give back to North Cross by helping carry on a favorite school tradition. This year, three former Raiders spoke at Symposium about engineering, law, and design. 

“A big thank you to all the presenters, including parents of some of our current students, and specifically the alumni who were able to participate in Symposium. Alumni presenters included Emily Armentrout ’11, John Fishwick, and David Hill ‘79.  Symposium continues to be a great way for students to realize what graduates from North Cross are able to accomplish. It is also an opportunity to stay active and involved with North Cross. I encourage any alumni to become speakers at Symposium in the future.”

— Jack Hamlin '03, Chairman of the Alumni Board

Cook Field Update

​The Richard Cook Athletic Field campaign has raised $263,783, and it needs to reach $330,000 by March 30 for the field to be built this spring. In order for Cook Field to be ready in the fall, grass will need to be planted in May; otherwise, our soccer and field hockey teams will have to wait another year for their field. The North Cross Board of Trustees will meet on March 30, and at that point, members will need to know that we have enough support in pledges or gifts to begin construction on the field this year.

An exciting announcement: A generous donor has offered a challenge gift of $25,000 to match anyone who increases their gift or offers a new gift or pledge by March 30.

If you would like to increase your gift or make a new one online, click here.
Our goal is to start this project in April so that the field is ready for fall athletics. The campaign will continue until we can fund all its components, including bleachers, a scoreboard, and fencing, but the field is the highest time-sensitive need.

Board of Trustees Update

Russ Ellett ’84, Board of Trustees, Chairman

At the most recent Board of Trustees meeting, George Conway of Independent Educational Services presented results from the survey that was issued to parents and employees in November. While the results showed high satisfaction in most areas that were surveyed, we found that a large percentage of our school community is unfamiliar with the role of the Board of Trustees. As Chairman, I want our Board to be transparent and visible to parents, employees, students, and alumni. Therefore, I will take this opportunity to outline the Board’s responsibilities, structure, and membership. In the future, you will receive regular updates from one of our Board members after each meeting.
Continue reading on the Crossties Blog

Campus Update

Development Update

As you may be aware, a major function of the Development Office is to develop support for our school’s operations and programs through three fundraisers each fiscal year. Those are the Annual Fund, the Winter Gala, and the Big Flea Sales, and the total we must raise this year for these three is $450,000.

Gifts to the annual fund helped 100% of you by reducing the tuition your parents paid and by helping make sure the school had the money to pay teachers, fund programs, and pay bills. You can do the same by making a gift, too.

If you think about it, a $4 or $5 gift each month—about the cost of a cup of good coffee and less than the tip on most restaurant bills—would make a big difference to our students and school.  No matter the size of the gift you make, you’ll make a difference in the lives of others, just as others made a difference in your life.

:: Read the full Development update

Visitors from Argentina

For seven weeks, a group of Argentinian students (grades 8-11) studied at North Cross. ​All of the students are from Corrientes, Argentina, the hometown of Spanish teacher Marianna Hermosilla. They took courses in history, sciences, English, and current US affairs, while becoming more familiar with American culture. 

The students stayed with host families and visited Washington D.C., Natural Bridge, Shenandoah Caverns, attended a hockey game, and even had a chance to go skiing.

Photos from the students' visit to Roanoke and responses to the question "What did you enjoy most about your time here at North Cross?" are included on the Crossties Blog.
:: Continue Reading on the Crossties Blog

Academic Update

A Sweet Project

​Last month, there were buckets and tubing scattered around several maple trees by the lower school. This was part of a project that Brian Clark, father of Rowan Clark ’28, conducted with kindergarten students to teach them how to tap maple trees for syrup.
:: Continue Reading on the Crossties Blog

Campus Speakers

On February 22, Abdullah Baig (left) spoke to upper and middle school students about "Islam 101 in the American Muslim Context." Abdullah speaks regularly at high schools in the Northern Virginia area, as well as George Mason University. The speaker was arranged by Shermeen Imam ’16. 
Last month, middle and upper school students attended the annual Black History Month assembly in Fishburn Auditorium. Jerel L. Rhodes (center) was the keynote speaker this year. Rhodes is the founder of Rebounding Roanoke, an educational-based non-profit organization focused on the youth of the Greater Roanoke Valley.
The Horace G. Fralin Program for Global Studies recently welcomed speaker Heath Lee (right). Ms. Lee is a biographer specializing in women's history. Her discussion focused on the wives of POWs and MIAs, which is the focus of her next book, The Reluctant Sorority. Heath was interviewed on the subject for the PBS documentary “Jeremiah” and Global Studies students had the opportunity to watch it before her address.

Lower School SEAD Program

This week and next, all lower school students are taking part in a unique eight-day Science, Engineering, Arts, and Design (SEAD) project in collaboration with the Virginia Tech Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology (ICAT) and Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech. The program is structured to stimulate cross-grade, multidisciplinary exploration of literature, performance, communication, and design. The common component to the program will be the poem “If” by Rudyard Kipling. This is the first time a project like this has been attempted using elementary aged students.

Founders' Day Celebration

North Cross School celebrated 71 years of excellence at the annual Founders' Day ceremony in the Carter Athletic Center on February 5.  At the start of the ceremony, Dr. Proctor quizzed students with North Cross trivia questions like “What school did we defeat for our first ever soccer win?” (Carlisle), â€œWhat notable newspaper family has an auditorium on campus named after them?” (Fishburn), and â€œWhere did Mr. Clagget earn his undergraduate degree?” (University of Pennsylvania).

Jennifer Landry was named the 2016 recipient of the Morris Award for Excellence in Teaching. Mrs. Landry teaches chemistry, including AP chemistry, and a brand new course called STAD (Science, Technology, Art, and Design). She also leads the Upper School's Honor Council and is chair of Symposium.

In photo: Jennifer Landry (center) receives her Morris Award certificate from Headmaster Dr. Chris Proctor (right) and Mr. Mark Thompson, Director of the Upper School (left).
Continue Reading on the Crossties Blog

CrossWalk Program Update

Started in the fall of 2013, the CrossWalk Program provides individualized instruction in language and math for bright students with dyslexia and similar language-based learning differences in grades ECP Level 3–Kindergarten through 8th grade. The goal of the program is to return students to a mainstream education fully prepared to realize their highest potential by ninth grade. Students in the program spend part of their school day in the classroom with their grade level peers.

With three full-time faculty members, and one part-time Orton-Gillingham trained volunteer, the program currently has 18 students enrolled. Last year the average CrossWalk student advanced two years in reading ability over the course of just nine months.

If you think the CrossWalk Program might benefit your child, contact your classroom teacher or email Kit Prillaman, Director of the CrossWalk Program, at to learn more.
Visit the CrossWalk Program Site

Staff Stories

Jeff Kennard, Director of Marketing
Zack DeMoss, Director of Information Technology

Art Update

Oh, Say, Can They Sing

Members of the North Cross School Chorale had the opportunity to perform the Star-Spangled Banner before the ceremonial swearing-in of John P. Fishwick, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Virginia. Alison Burton ’16, Jack Fishwick ’16, Tristin Johnson-Hodges ’16, Walter Mann ’16, and Adrienne Spring ’16 performed under the direction of Choral Director Mr. Andrew Miller.

:: Watch a video of the performance

A New Piano

The music department at North Cross received its first Yamaha U series piano, thanks to a generous donation from Salem Printing. The instrument provides our teachers, musicians, and singers with a quality, long-lasting instrument to enhance their musical studies. This purchase is part of the school’s goal to obtain four high-quality refurbished pianos to replace the existing pianos. Please join us in thanking Salem Printing for making this first piano possible!
We are also grateful for a recent gift from Randy and Kristina Newberry that puts us on the road to obtaining our second piano. We encourage you to join Salem Printing and the Newberrys in donating to our piano fund. With your help, we can get a second piano on campus by the end of the school year!

High School All-District Choir

Four Upper School students participated in the Virginia Choral Directors Assocation District 6 All-District Choir. From left in photo, Victoria Riego de Dios 19, Olivia Bloch ’19, Isa Kevorkian ’19, and Jack Fishwick ’16, were selected by audition to participate in the workshop style event.  The students learned 5-6 pieces of music, rehearsed for 12-14 hours with notable conductors, and performed in concert for their parents and choral directors.

For the second year in a row, Jack earned All-Virginia Choir honors in the All-State Choir. He was chosen to be a 1st Alternate for the baritone section after he auditioned during All-District Choir.

Athletic Update

Photos from

Raiders Win Conference, Move on to State

At the conference championship at Roanoke College, the boys’ varsity basketball team defeated Hargrave Military Academy to claim the VIC Division II crown. A layup by James Nworah ’18 (left photo by Don Petersen) with just 10 seconds left was the difference for the Raiders in the 59-57 win. 
:: Read the story published at

2016 Muscaro-Satterwhite Service Award

Pam and Joe Moskal were presented with the 2016 Muscaro-Satterwhite Service Award. In his remarks, Athletic Director Eric Lawrence spoke about the importance of the Moskal family to the Raider athletic program. Below is an excerpt from Eric’s remarks.

Pam was a founding member of our Athletic Boosters in 2005 and has faithfully served with the Boosters since that time. She actively attends meetings, helps stock and staff Raider Joe’s as well as our indoor concessions. Basically, anything that needs to get done, she graciously gets it done.

Joe, or Dr. Moskal as most of us know his as, has tirelessly supported our athletic program as team doc for various sports and especially football for the past eight years! For all of these reasons the Athletic Department at North Cross is endlessly grateful for the both of you. You make a great couple.

Girls' Swimming Wins Conference

The girls’ varsity swim team earned a BRC Conference Championship for the first time since 2005. Maddie Robinson ’16 (right) and Margo Winn ’18 (left) were named Co-MVPs for the event. Katherine Lake ’18, Nathalie Lemon ’20, Lilly Kemper ’19, and Grace Whitesell ’19 were named First Team BRC All-Conference.

The boys’ varsity team finished a close second, losing to Roanoke Catholic by four points. Joseph Cartledge ’16, Andrew Lorens ’19, Daniel Lorens ’16, and Zack H'Doubler ’17 were named First Team VIC All-Conference. 

Class News and Notes

Bharathan Receives Harrison Research Award

"From examining how James Joyce’s work relates to civil unrest to quantitative eco-labeling schemes, and from researching Roman property law to analyzing the pathology of Alzheimer’s disease, 50 University of Virginia undergraduates, including Urmila Bharathan ('14) of Roanoke, will pursue 46 grant-funded research projects this summer."
See the full story on the Roanoke Times

Mark Wise Accepts New Position with Meridium

In January of 2015, Mark Wise '96 accepted a new role at Meridium to run its Equity Investor Alliance with General Electric. The position lead to a relocation from Thailand (after 7 years) to the San Francisco Bay Area. Wise's role is global and full-time supporting GE from a Meridium perspective.

"It's been a great ride with Meridium these last 16 years, and I must say, I feel extremely privileged and have truly enjoyed being a part of a great team," said Wise.

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