MAY 2018
Jennifer Crusco
Communications Assistant

Holy Angels Club Shares ‘JOY’ with the Community

Demarest, NJ: Several musically inclined students from the Academy of the Holy Angels have discovered that JOY is short for “Joining Old and Young.” This aptly-named group just concluded its 2017-18 calendar of performances at area nursing homes and senior living communities. Each concert featured songs from the 1930s, ‘40s, and ‘50s.

JOY’s current Co-presidents are Elizabeth Anderson of Wyckoff, Rebecca Quigley of Bergenfield, and Caroline Tolin on River Edge. This trio described JOY as a relatively small group, but one that is “deeply loving and very strong.”

JOY was launched in the early 2000s, when a student noticed that her grandmother, who had Alzheimer’s disease, lit up when she played old music. The student decided to bring that joy to other people. AHA alumna and current faculty member Katie McSherry Collins later took over as president of the club.

Volunteer Suzanne Alenick has played piano for JOY for 16 years. Alenick works with the club every week, and travels with the group when they perform.

Over time, JOY also began to donate to Make-a-Wish, an organization that fulfills the wishes of seriously ill children. At first, the residents who heard the JOY concerts would make contributions to the students. The performers decided to share this joy with a worthy cause. The group also raises funds through bake sales and Jeans Pass days, which allow contributing AHA students and faculty members to wear jeans to school for the day.

In 2016, JOY’s fundraising was so successful, that the group split the money in half and donated a piano to one of the senior residences the performers had visited.

“JOY is an absolutely amazing club,” Anderson said. “I have been a part of this club for four years, and it was one of the best decisions I've made. JOY has given me (as well as the other presidents) a new outlook on life and how one thing can make a massive difference in the lives of other people. I really hope JOY sees an influx of freshmen next year, because it changes lives.”

Anderson and Quigley will graduate from AHA at the end of this month, but Tolin will continue as co-president with Yasmine Carter-McTavish of Lodi, who has been serving as JOY’s secretary.

JOY officers for 2018-19 will also include: Vice President Julie Zierer of Upper Saddle River, Secretary Sophia Luongo of Upper Saddle River, Treasurer Meredith Joseph of Suffern (NY), Fundraiser Coordinator Natalie Andreoli of Wyckoff, and Public Relations Coordinators Kayla Pringle of Suffern (NY) and Abrianna Gutierrez of Hamburg.

Founded by the School Sisters of Notre Dame in 1879, the Academy of the Holy Angels is the oldest private girls’ school in Bergen County. While AHA is steeped in Catholic tradition, this prestigious high school serves young women from a broad spectrum of cultural and religious backgrounds. Over time, thousands of women have passed through AHA’s portals. Many go on to study at some of the nation’s best universities, earning high-ranking positions in medicine, government, law, education, public service, business, arts, and athletics. The Academy’s current leaders continue to further the SSND mission to provide each student with the tools she needs to reach the fullness of her potential—spiritually, intellectually, socially, and physically, by offering a first-rate education in a nurturing environment where equal importance is placed on academic excellence, character development, moral integrity, and service to others.


Academy of the Holy Angels

315 Hillside Avenue Contact Us & Driving Directions

Demarest, NJ 07627

Phone: 201.768.7822

Contact Us & Driving Directions

Copyright 2017. Academy of the Holy Angels. Privacy Policy.