St. Louis University High School
|St. Louis University High School|
Religioni et Bonis Artibus
Religion and the Fine Arts
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam
For The Greater Glory of God
Men for Others
|4970 Oakland Avenue
St. Louis, Missouri 63110
|School type||Private secondary|
|Religious affiliation(s)||Roman Catholic,
|Founder||Louis Guillaume Valentin Dubourg (as St. Louis Academy)|
|President||David J. Laughlin|
|Grades||9 to 12|
|Enrollment||1100  (2015)|
|Average class size||21|
|Student to teacher ratio||12:1|
|Athletics conference||Metro Catholic Conference|
|Accreditation||ISSL, ISACS, NAIS, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools|
|Average ACT scores||30|
|Publication||Sisyphus, SLUH Review, "Gadfly", SLUH News (for Parents & Alumni), President's Report (for Alumni)|
|Newspaper||The Prep News|
St. Louis University High School (SLUH), a Jesuit Catholic high school for boys founded in 1818, is the oldest secondary educational institution in the U.S. west of the Mississippi River, and one of the largest private high schools in Missouri. It is located in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis.
- 1 History
- 2 Academics
- 3 Facilities
- 4 Activities
- 5 Sports and rivalries
- 6 Notable alumni
- 7 Other notable people
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
SLUH was founded in 1818 by the bishop of St. Louis, Bishop Dubourg, as a Latin school for boys known as St. Louis Academy. Classes were held in a one-story house owned by Madame Alvarez on the northwest corner of Third and Market Street. It quickly grew to include a college division, and the college was granted university status in 1832. The high school retained the identity of St. Louis Academy on the university campus until 1924 when it moved to its own facilities and incorporated separately under the name of St. Louis University High School. The school's new home, on Oakland Avenue, was a gift of Anna Backer in memory of her late husband and alumnus George Backer. That facility, also known as Backer Memorial, has grown considerably over the years and remains the school's home. SLUH remained in an urban setting while many other private high schools have followed demographic shifts to the western suburbs.
In 1984 Paul Owens became the school's first lay principal, and in 2005 David J. Laughlin was hired as the school's first lay president.
Since the school is part of the Jesuit network that consists of 59 high schools and 28 colleges and universities in the United States, SLUH provides an education infused with the tradition and philosophy of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Theology and philosophy classes are conducted daily.
According to figures released on SLUH's website in 2011, the median ACT score for SLUH students is over 30. By composite score, it ranks among the top seven per cent of schools in the United States. Over 50% of SLUH's class of 2011 achieved a score of 30 or higher on the ACT. Among St. Louis and St. Louis area high schools with a total enrollment of over 600, it had the highest scores in 2012. Since 2005 a total of 31 students have received a 36, the highest score possible. Four members of the class of 2012 achieved this score, along with five members of the class of 2013, and two members of the class of 2014.
In September 2010, 23 students from SLUH were named National Merit Scholarship Program Semifinalists, exceeding the number of semifinalists at any other school in Missouri. In 2011, 17 students were named National Merit Semifinalists, while 28 were named National Merit Commended Scholars. In 2012, SLUH surpassed its 2010 performance: 25 students were named National Merit Semifinalists, while 29 were named National Merit Commended Scholars.
Advanced Placement (AP) courses have been offered through SLUH for half a century. AP courses are now offered for 22 disciplines. In 2010, 345 students took 790 AP exams. Eighty-seven percent scored a 3, 4 or 5, grades that qualify them for college credit.
SLUH has also performed well in the Presidential Scholars Program. In 2007, for example, three of Missouri's ten semifinalists were from SLUH. One of Missouri's two recipients, Daniel Viox, was among the three. In 2012 one of Missouri's ten semifinalists was from SLUH.
The humanities receive a strong emphasis within SLUH's curriculum, as evidenced in the language department that has offered four-year programs in Russian and Chinese since 1964. In 1997 a student exchange program with the Nanjing Foreign Language School was established. Since 2011 SLUH has sponsored a Confucius Classroom which is a subdivision of Webster University's Confucius Institute. In 1999 educational exchange programs for the study of Russian language and culture were established with schools – gymnasiums – in St. Petersburgh. In keeping with its strong Jesuit Catholic heritage, courses in Latin and Greek are offered, as are the popular choices of French and Spanish. SLUH also has strong programs in the natural sciences, mathematics, computer science, social sciences, fine arts, and literature.
Virtually all SLUH students immediately enter colleges or universities upon graduation. Members of the Class of 2011 were accepted at 203 different colleges and universities and will be attending 72 of them. These students accepted over 300 scholarships totaling nearly $2 million.
In The Washington Post's 2015 ranking of America's Most Challenging High Schools, SLUH was identified as among the top three in Missouri and the top 1.5% nationwide. In the Post's 2016 ranking, SLUH was identified as among the top 1.2% nationwide.The United States Department of Education's National Blue Ribbon Schools Program recognized SLUH as an Exemplary High Performing National Blue Ribbon School for 2015. In 2016 Niche (company) ranked SLUH as the 19th best All-Boys high school in the US.
In the late 1990s, a large capital campaign to fund growth and expansion projects began under Fr. Paul Sheridan, S.J. Called Vision 2000 (V2K), the $32 million plan included reducing class sizes, better integrating technology into the curriculum, and increasing class options.
The early phases of the program included the addition of new teaching and counseling positions in order to reduce class size and teaching loads and to expand the curriculum. Over a period of eight years, 18 new teaching and counseling positions were added.
The physical improvements began in 2004 when the football stadium was upgraded with the installation of artificial turf to extend its usability. That same year, a new entry boulevard to the west of the campus was constructed jointly with the adjacent St. Louis Science Center. The construction continued with the addition of a 17-acre soccer–track complex and Sheridan Stadium, a new baseball field.
In 2009 SLUH completed the new Danis Field House, a free-standing field house which contains two gymnasium spaces, offices and meeting space for the athletic staff, and locker facilities.
SLUH is competitive in many academic events such as math contests, Math League, Speech Team, Mock Trial and Quizbowl (Academic Team). SLUH has placed as the top scoring high school in the Missouri chapter of Math League for five years running. The Quizbowl team of 2006-07 won the district title and second place at the state competition along with the individual second place medal.
Sports and rivalries
- William S. Bowdern, S.J., conducted an exorcism, some details of which were portrayed in William Peter Blatty's novel The Exorcist, as well as in the movie based upon that novel. In the movie Possessed, Timothy Dalton played the role of Fr. Bowdern in an attempt to present a more accurate version of events.
- Adolph John Paschang (Chinese: 柏增主教) was an American Maryknoll Catholic priest, missionary, relief worker, and educator working in southern part of China in the early 20th century.
- Michael J. Sheridan, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Colorado Springs.
- David Francis Hickey, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Belize.
- Dave Giuntoli, actor.
- James Gunn, filmmaker and screenwriter.
- Matt Gunn, writer for HBO show Real Time with Bill Maher.
- Sean Gunn, actor.
- George Hickenlooper, award-winning filmmaker.
- Ken Kwapis, film and TV director.
- Dan Potthast, ska musician and member of MU330, named after the class in which its constituents met.
- John E. Bardgett, Missouri Supreme Court justice.
- Terrence L. Bracy, former Assistant United States Secretary of Transportation under President Jimmy Carter. Appointed Chairman of the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation by President Bill Clinton.
- Alfonso J. Cervantes, former mayor of St. Louis.
- Joseph Darst, former mayor of St. Louis.
- The Hon. Edward L. Filippine, United States federal judge.
- Raymond Gruender, federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.
- Daniel Isom, former St. Louis City Chief of Police.
- Chris Koster, Missouri Attorney General.
- F. William McCalpin, attorney known as a strong advocate for legal services for the poor.
- Bryan Mullanphy, former mayor of St. Louis.
- Mel Price, former U.S. Congressmen from southern Illinois.
- William F. Quinn, first governor of the state of Hawaii, and former president of Dole Food Company.
- Eugene R. Sullivan, former chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals (Armed Forces), counsel on Richard Nixon's defense team during the Senate hearings concerned with the Watergate Scandal, and governor of Wake Island.
- Raymond Tucker, former mayor of St. Louis. Also, former chair of mechanical engineering at Washington University in St. Louis.
- Buzz Westfall, St. Louis County, County Executive, 1990 - 2003.
- Richard T. Bradley, P.E., City of St. Louis, President - Board of Public Service.
- Jean Baptiste Charbonneau, son of Sacagawea and Toussaint Charbonneau, members of The Corps of Discovery/Lewis and Clark Expedition, pictured as an infant on the U.S. One Dollar Coin.
- Thomas Anthony Dooley III, humanitarian, medical doctor, activist, author and Congressional Gold Medal recipient. During the late 1950s he established and worked in numerous clinics in Viet Nam and Laos. The organization he helped establish (MEDICO) was later incorporated into CARE (relief agency).
- Henry Hampton, Civil Rights Movement activist, recipient of the Heinz Award, film maker, and producer of the documentary Eyes on the Prize.
- E. Michael Harrington, Harvard professor, author, and founder of the Democratic Socialists of America. Included among his many books is The Other America, a book which had a significant impact on John F. Kennedy's and Lyndon B. Johnson's administrations.
- Max Starkloff, founder of Paraquad.
- Jack Warner, SJ, in 1979 founded Teatro la Fragua, a Theatre Group in Honduras that gives free performances and theatre workshops for the poor, in an attempt to help them express their lives and problems. Concerning his role as Jesuit and as a promoter of theatre among the poor, Warner has said: "Art and religion spring from our need to be in touch with something beyond the littleness we feel as human beings."
- Greg Burke, journalist and senior communications advisor in the Vatican.
- Robert Hyland, radio executive at KMOX who created the talk radio format.
- George Michael, sportscaster for The George Michael Sports Machine.
Scholars, scientists, and inventors
- Joseph L. Badaracco, chaired professor of business ethics at Harvard University. Has integrated study of literature into study of business leadership and ethics.
- Michael R. DeBaun, chaired professor of pediatrics at Vanderbilt University, Sickle-cell disease expert and 2004 Backer Award recipient. He is an elected member of the National Academies' Institute of Medicine.
- Barnaby Faherty, historian and author of more than fifty books, one of which, "A Wall for San Sebastian" (1962), was the basis for the 1968 film La Bataille de San Sebastian starring Anthony Quinn and Charles Bronson.
- Gary Gutting, holder of endowed chair in philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. Through his publications in such media outlets as The New York Times he has adopted the role of a public intellectual.
- Robert J. Scherrer, professor of theoretical physics, developer of a model that explains dark matter and dark energy as two aspects of a single force, chairman of Vanderbilt University's Department of Physics and Astronomy, author of many science fiction works, and 2010 winner of the Klopsteg Memorial Award.
- Hubert Schlafly, studied electrical engineering and invented the teleprompter. He also helped promote the broadcasting of television signals via satellite feeds.
- Keith Schwab, quantum physicist and head of Schwab Research Group at Caltech; conducts pathbreaking work concerning quantum nature of the physical world and concerning nanotechnology.
- Nelson Burton Jr., professional bowler.
- Buzz Demling, professional soccer player and former member of the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team.
- Joe Germanese, former Major League Soccer player for the New England Revolution
- Cole Grossman, Major League Soccer player for Real Salt Lake.
- Henry Jones, former All-Pro defensive back for the Buffalo Bills.
- Bob Kehoe, soccer player and former head coach of the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team.
- William "Ty" Keough, sports broadcaster, retired professional soccer player and former member of the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team.
- Ed Macauley, professional basketball player and member of the Basketball Hall of Fame.
- Pat McBride, professional soccer player and member of the national soccer hall of fame.
- Tommy Meyer, professional soccer player for the Los Angeles Galaxy.
- Joe Schultz, professional baseball player and manager.
- Hank Raymonds, Marquette University basketball coach (1961–1983).
- Ken Sanders, former MLB player (Kansas City Athletics, Boston Red Sox, Milwaukee Brewers, Cleveland Indians, Minnesota Twins, California Angels, New York Mets, Kansas City Royals).
- Frank Simek, defender for English soccer club Carlisle United F.C. and member of the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team.
- Matt Sinclair, former professional football player, Washington Redskins.
- Luis Soffner, Major League Soccer goalkeeper, New England Revolution.
- Taylor Twellman, Major League Soccer player for the New England Revolution, named the 2005 MLS Most Valuable Player and member of the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team.
- George Werley, former MLB player (Baltimore Orioles).
- Ronnie Wingo Jr., NFL running back (Buffalo Bills).
- Murphy Troy, 2016 United States Olympic Volleyball Team member
Other notable people
- Charles "Dismas" Clark, taught mathematics and served as an administrator at SLUH during the 1930s. After returning from service as an army chaplain during WWII, he became an advocate of prison reform and rehabilitation. In 1959 he founded Dismas House, the first half-way house for parolees and former prisoners in the United States. The Hoodlum Priest, a film about Clark, was made in 1961. Don Murray played the role of "Dismas" Clark.
- Walter Halloran taught at SLUH during the 1970s. Prior to that he earned two Bronze Stars while serving as a paratrooper chaplain during the Vietnam War. In 1949 he assisted William S. Bowdern with what has since become a famous case of exorcism.
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