Meet Valedictorian Haley Garecht

Advancement Intern Erin Donovan ’20 had the opportunity to sit down with Valedictorian Haley Garecht to ask some questions about her past four years at O’Hara as well as her potential future plans. Here are Haley’s responses:

What is your Parish?

Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Overbrook.

What college will you be attending?

I haven’t committed to a college yet, but hopefully I’ll know soon!

What will your major be?

I’m still deciding on a major, but right now I’m thinking either Political Science or Philosophy. 

If you will be involved in any clubs or activities at your college?

I’m hoping to stay involved in pro-life clubs and play club volleyball, but other than that I’ll probably just join whatever looks like fun- maybe student council or the college’s version of DHDM? I’m also planning on going to either medical or law school, so I would love to join any pre-med or pre-law programs wherever I go. 

What activities did you participate in here at O’Hara? Did you hold any Leadership positions for any of these activities?

Over the last four years I have been a part of DHDM, the Pro-Life Club, NHS, Lion Connection, Tri-M, theater, choir, volleyball, Lion Ambassadors, CSC, Golden Touch, Big Buddies, Operation Santa Claus, and track. I had the opportunity to serve as NHS secretary, DHDM’s Communication Coordinator, Co-President of the Pro-Life Club, and Lion Ambassador officer. 

Do you have any advice for the class of 2026? 

Don’t be afraid to take charge. Some of the best activities and events I’ve been a part of here were completely student-run, so I would definitely encourage the freshmen to take initiative while they are in high school and work to make things happen themselves. 

What is your favorite quote? 

“The robbed that smiles steals something from the thief.” (Othello, Act I, scene III)

What is your greatest O’Hara Memory?

My greatest O’Hara memory is when the volleyball team won the PCL. Hearing the student section, rushing the court, and getting to hold the plaque was an amazing experience and I was so proud of all the work our team put in leading up to the game. Another contender is junior prom- everyone had such a fun time at the dance and it was the first event we had last year that felt fully “normal.” Hopefully senior prom will be even better! 

Are there any people or classes that have had an impact on you?

Mrs. Bauer and Mrs. Rowitt are both teachers who had a huge impact on my time at O’Hara. I loved both Geometry and APUSH as classes, but the most significant thing about both of those periods was how much Mrs. Bauer and Mrs. Rowitt truly cared about the students and our education. I’ve gotten to know and work with Mrs. Bauer a lot over the last two years, and she has always been an advocate for us students and our events. I also have to give a shoutout to the friends I’ve made here, especially through volleyball and show, who made my last four years so fun and are the reason I stayed at O’Hara after freshman year. 

College Plans: What colleges did you get accepted to? What is your college destination and major/minor? Honors program?

I’ve been accepted to Notre Dame, Villanova, Catholic, University of Dallas, Eastern University, Hillsdale, and Franciscan. Like I said before, I haven’t decided on a school yet, but I’ve been accepted to both the Catholic and Villanova Honors Programs.

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