Although more than a decade has passed since Sharnita Nelson was a student at St. Thomas More
, she still vividly recalls a morning ritual from Kindergarten. After reciting morning prayers, students were given activity packets to complete. “The first page was an exercise in penmanship where we traced our names in cursive. We all raced through it to get to the second page, a color by number activity,” Sharnita fondly recalls.
That same enthusiasm for learning was a constant theme throughout Sharnita’s nine years at St. Thomas More. She recalls her 4th grade teacher, Miss Barnes, who was strict and whose class was challenging. At first she didn’t like it but, says Sharnita, “at the end of the day I learned a lot. It was a great foundation.” Then, in 8th grade Sharnita had Language Arts class with Miss Coates, now principal of St. Thomas More. She describes Miss Coates as “incredibly enthusiastic” and the education she received that year as “really improving her writing on high school admissions applications”.
Fast-forward through Sharnita’s high school career at Bishop MacNamara and collegiate experience at University of Maryland and you will find her employed as an accountant by PriceWaterhouseCoopers, LLC in McLean, VA. Sharnita often logs long hours over weeks at a stretch. When asked what values were instilled in her during her time at St. Thomas More, Sharnita responds, “Self discipline. You had to do your homework, then you could play. That translates into all parts of life. The rewards of hard work are always bigger than you ever thought they would be.”
Sharnita still keeps in touch with the St. Thomas More community. She is a member of the parish and helps out at the school from time to time. As a high school student, she was even asked to speak at St. Thomas More’s 8th grade graduation one year. Sharnita is just one of many successful Consortium graduates living life guided by high moral values instilled by her family, her faith and her school.