Loretto’s goal has always been to educate the child as a whole in all fields. We strive for our students to understand humanities, appreciate art and music, and to think critically about social and justice issues. We believe that each student has unique talents that will help him or her develop skills necessary to be successful in the career of their choosing. Whether it is theater, sports, social sciences, or the STEM field, we know our students will be successful in whatever their passion may be.

STEM at Loretto

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math have become important subjects in the competitive world we live in. In recent years, the United States has developed into a global leader, producing the best Scientists and Engineers the world has seen. Loretto Academy recognizes the importance of these subjects, and has always prioritized these subjects in its core curriculum by teaching them daily, relating them to other subjects, and applying real world scenarios to the classroom setting.

In the past 5 years, Loretto Academy has become part of the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Lego League, a competitive program where students are challenged to learn more about real world problems and the science behind their solutions. As a team, students must research a problem, find a creative, original solution, and design and build a robot that will accomplish missions assigned by the League.

Elementary School

5 years ago, the Elementary School began our robotics program by opening Loretto Academy’s FIRST Lego League team composed of 4th and 5th graders. Our team’s name, “AngelBots,” has become a team recognized for its hard work, good ethics, and cooperation. In its third season, the Elementary team won 2nd place Judges’ Award, and went on to be the youngest team to compete in the World Festival at the University of Toronto in Canada. Last year, our teams won 1st place in Team work and 2nd place in research.

Three of our Elementary School teachers have attended the Trustey Family Fellowship with Notre Dame University. This fellowship is a unique opportunity for educators focused on increasing student’s interest and learning in STEM fields. At the end of the school year, the Elementary School held STEM night, where grade levels participated on a project that involved engineering processes. Some projects included the students’ race track and cars, which they designed and built; made to-scale solar systems; opening books using only simple machines, and the research and design of a community garden.

Middle School

The Robotics program carried on to the Middle School, when they began their own team, AngelBots Blue. Last year, the girls came together and created “Plasti-Crete,” an original type of concrete made from the plastic bottles as a solution to minimize the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch” that is currently contaminating our oceans.

The middle school has made improvements to its curriculum, using outside sources to enhance student’s learning and understanding of mathematics and how it is used to create their favorite forms of entertainment. Using Khan Academy, the girls learned how important math is to make Disney and Pixar movies and made their own animations using the same techniques. The students also learned how video games are made using code.org, and solved a series of programing levels.

Finally, Middle school students participate in an annual science fair, where they ask and define problems, use models, investigate, interpret data, and find solutions, to then compete with each other to qualify for city or state wide competitions.

High School

Loretto Academy recognizes that high school students are searching for a career path that matches their skills and abilities, and we offer classes that explore their unique talents to spark their interest in STEM fields. Some of our science courses include; Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Principles of Technology, Anatomy and Physiology of Human Systems, Human Pathophysiology, and Introduction to Forensic Science.

By partnering with Khan Academy, our math courses have become more comprehensive and challenging. Rigorous PSAT/SAT preparation is implemented in every math class, where the success and understanding of every student is priority.

The high school robotics team, AngelBots Gold, was formed in 2015 and has been an enormous success. It is the only all girl high school team in El Paso. Thus far, they have been awarded the Rookie All-Star Award and competed at the World Championships in St. Louis, MO. Recently, Loretto Academy has partnered with UTEP’s MAES/SHPE organization (Mexican American Engineers and Scientists/Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers) to continue promoting knowledge and interest in STEM by establishing a SHPE Jr. Chapter at our school.