On October 18th, Mrs. Merryman and Mrs. Vilardo along with a group of senior female students attended the Grit Conference at the Malcolm Pray Achievement Center in Westchester County. Visiting this center has become an annual event where students have the opportunity to learn about entrepreneurship and themselves. The invitation to this conference was extend through the center’s Director and Lourdes alumna, Marikay Satryano class of ’87.

The lecture series speaker Tom Dejerlein discussed the concept that is explored in the New York Times best-selling book Grit by Angela Duckworth. The inspirational conference focused on the trait “grit” and how it is portrayed in people. It is demonstrated in individuals who succeed, who stand out, and accomplish great things in spite of setbacks. These people may not possess the strongest academic skills, or other exceptional gifts, and may be without privilege but have the grit to carry on.

Tom Dejerlein who spoke at the event was interviewed by Angela Duckworth due to his time spent in the USMA. He also demonstrated his “grit” when he was in the army and was hit by a sniper, he was given last rights of the Catholic Church, but woke up in Walter Reed 49 hours.

Senior Nicole Wagner, one of the students that attended the conference said, “It was a great eye-opener as to what may come my way in the future. I learned that hard-work will get you places.”


To learn more about grit you can listen to Angela Duckworth’s Ted Talk