Kristina Martir ’20, Olivia Manfredo ’20, Gabriella Gutierrez ’22
This year, PV hosted its annual Open House on October 19th for its sending districts. Academics, athletics, and extra-curricular activities highlighted much of what Passaic Valley can offer those who enroll through booths, demonstrations, and performances.
Immense planning went into this event to make it such a success. Dr. Cardillo explained how the Open House first began as a vision to showcase the school’s activities, programs and, most importantly, the school’s unity. Teachers, students, administration, and staff members volunteered to come together to put their best foot forward and present a reputable image of the school.
Dr. Cardillo envisions a successful Open House as including “good publicity, different people coming together with open minds, staff being able to share what we offer, and student guides.”
Passaic Valley students are the greatest asset we have for convincing future Hornets and their families that PV is truly the place to be. “There is nothing better than a good student testimonial,” Dr. Cardillo said.
The night of the Open House, the STEM Department provided interactive experiments for middle schoolers and their guardians. Presentations of electrical currents through circuits, resonance and frequencies, pendulum waves,
and many more demonstrations were hosted by Dr. Susanne Iobst, Mr. Ed Iobst, and Mr. Randall Sanders. Together the science teachers highlighted the STEM Explorations class, Rube Goldberg projects, and PV’s robust STEM curriculum.
In a much anticipated demonstration by the Criminal Justice Program, NJ Transit Officer Roman brought his K-9 partner Officer Jet for a simulated explosives search. Following the demonstration, each audience member was encouraged to pet Officer Jet who and ask Officer Roman any further questions. The Criminal Justice Program also invited members of the Passaic County SWAT team to speak with Open House attendees about their careers and PV’s Criminal Justice offerings.
Several teachers held presentations and conferences in classrooms to inform visitors of PV’s diverse and rigorous academic programs. Mr. Tim Donnelly informed guests of dual enrollment courses. Mrs. Jamie Picarelli and Ms. Lori Quail discussed the Advanced Placement and Honors classes. Mrs. Cheryl Joseph, Ms. Abbie O’Connor, and Ms. Gianna Riccardi conferenced with parents and middle-schoolers about Co-Teaching and Multiple Disabilities classes. Ms. Melanie Vasa showed off her Photography classes and Dark Room. The Teen Center invited visitors to tour their room outside the cafeteria. Ms. Rosanna Napolitano showcased the 8th Grade Italian Accelerated Program. Mr. Billy Goodman gave tours of the Unity Garden in the courtyard. Mr. William Phillian and a couple of his students discussed the Engineering Program. Mrs. Stephanie Roberts presented PVTV and their work. Ms. Kathleen Menake showed off PV’s video conferencing equipment and the CITVC class. Finally, Ms. Arianna Robeson, Mr. Kevin Haimowitz, and Mr. Joe Wassel presented Computer Aided Design and Computer Science offerings.
In the Library, Art classes showcased various student works from their diverse and ingenious projects. The display served as a preview of sorts for the Art Show later in the year.
The Theatre Department presented a ten-minute preview of the 2019 Fall show, Lend Me a Tenor, in the Schneider Auditorium.
“I’m glad that many people were able to watch the preview of this show to see what the Theatre Department offers,” said Ms. Pia Vanderstreet, director of Lend Me a Tenor.
Choir performed two pieces and the Hornet Harmonics performed the “Star Spangled Banner” in a cappella.
Freshman, JV and Varsity Cheerleaders showcased a glimpse of school spirit by performing sideline cheers, cheering for guests as they walked into the Griswald Gymnasium. This brought much enthusiasm to the event and set a tone for the night.
During the Open House, many athletic teams and academic clubs informed attendees of their offerings at booths inside the Gris Gym. With twenty-four sports and over thirty clubs, prospective students were able to truly understand the wealth of opportunities that come with being a Hornet.
In the Farrell Gym, Ms. Jenai Agosta’s Gymnastics Team performed impressive acrobatic feats as they encouraged interested middle schoolers to sign-up.
“We have the best teachers here, showing what we have to offer,” says Dr. Fowler. “Anyone who came in [October 9th] saw the best of the best.”