Dr. Joseph Schmidt Stepping Down as President after 54 Years at Saint Patrick

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Aidan Lewis '21, News Editor

After 54 years as a leading figure and role model in the Saint Patrick High School community, Dr. Joseph G. Schmidt, AFSC, is stepping down from his role as President. Since arriving at St. Pat’s as a 21 year old Purdue graduate in 1967, Dr. Joe has been a teacher, dean, principal, and most recently, President. When asked why he chose to come to St. Pats in ‘67, Dr. Joe said he loved sports, so it was an opportunity to coach, he was excited about teaching in a Christian Brothers school, and his wife was happy about the job opportunity. 

“It has been quite a great journey for me,” Dr. Joe said when he reflected on his experiences over the last five decades. He has enjoyed coming to work every day, and stated that working at Saint Patrick has never felt like a job to him, but instead a privilege.

The thing Dr. Joe will miss the most about the Shamrock community is the students themselves. “One of the biggest thrills,” Dr. Joe said, “is continuously watching generations of Shamrocks become successful men.” Oftentimes, one will see Dr. Joe greeting students in the hallways and asking them about their day, showcasing the interest he takes in their lives to make their high school experience better.

Saint Patrick science teacher Rob Iliff explained what he witnesses everyday: “He (Dr. Joe) is always around the building, stopping into classrooms and engaging with students and teachers.” Mr. Iliff continued, “He has been a great role model of what it means to be a Shamrock.” A Shamrock, in Dr. Joe’s words, is devoted to the Lasaillian mission of helping others, engaged in service in the community, and loyal to the brotherhood that is so important to Saint Patrick High School.

“Dr. Joe will leave an indelible mark on the Saint Patrick High School community,” senior Joshua Esquilin said when asked about Dr. Joe’s impact. “He works very hard to ensure that every Shamrock has the best educational and extracurricular experience there is to have. He truly makes this school stand out as the best from all other educational institutions.” 

As for the new President of Saint Patrick, Mr. Iliff gave some insights as to the qualities he believes Dr. Joe’s successor should strive for, “I’m looking for a president who understands what high quality Catholic education looks like and is eager to continue the Shamrock tradition as future generations of Shamrocks begin their education at our school.”