Our beloved President (and principal!) of McAuley, Mrs. Sucher, will be retiring after this school year. I had the opportunity to sit down with her and reflect over her time at McAuley. Here is a brief interview:
- Where did you work before McAuley?
“Colerain High school. I worked 18 years there as the Assistant Principal.”
- How long have you been at McAuley?
“27 years… WOW! “
- What’s your funniest memory of McAuley?
“I remember one year during Catholic Schools Week, there was a talent show for students. I put on a tutu and twirled a baton! This was in the early 90’s. I twirled batons with the Advancement Director at the time. It was hysterical! I also put on a bathing suit and had balloons dropped on my head for the 50th Anniversary of McAuley. It wasn’t my favorite day, but many people thought it was funny!”
- How did your daughters deal with having you as their principal?
“Hmm! They each handled it differently. Kathleen went under the radar and did her own thing. She won the Catherine McAuley award her junior year. She had strong academics and a group of good friends. I was very proud of her! Maureen was more outgoing as the Co- President of her class, and she had strong academics, as well. She had been coming to McAuley since she was 3, and she let everyone know who she was. Both of them were successful. Having them here was a special gift from God. I could see them in class and activities and dances. It was truly very special. My husband reminded me how special it was to be with them every day through their high school years.”
- What’s the first thing you want to do in retirement?
“Go to Disney! — No (She laughs jokingly). I will turn off the alarm clock! 5:00am for 45 years—think about that! I will definitely spend more time with my grandchildren in South Bend. I want to travel a lot. I’ve been very fortunate to be able to travel– Thank God for that! Some of my favorite places that I want to revisit are Paris, Rome, and Greece. I am definitely planning a trip there for my retirement in the fall. It is so beautiful and I am so lucky to go there.”
- What will you miss most about McAuley?
“The students! I love you all. I’m tearing up! It’s going to be the hardest thing for me- just thinking about it. I was even a theater major—I need to get my act together!” (as she tears up)
- What do you want McAuley people to say about you after you leave McAuley?
“I’ve always believed that God created people to His image and likeness. I hope people say that I treated everyone with equality. That was my attempt!”
- Was education always your first career choice? If you hadn’t gone into education, what career would you have pursued?
“No! I wanted to be a star on Broadway! I majored in English, Speech, and Drama at Miami. The advice from my dad was to work for a year and save money before I moved to New York.. And 45 years later I’m here! It was inevitable in a family of teachers!”
- What has been the most fulfilling thing about working at McAuley?
“This is a hard one. The top priority for me is to practice and model my faith every day for the young women we are educating. I’m glad we have the Guardian Angel Fund and Women In and a plethora of AP classes. But I’d have to say being able to practice my faith daily is most important.”
- Who is your hero and why?
“People might think this is cheesy, but the Blessed Mother is my role model for following Christ undoubtingly. As a mother, that’s really inspiring.”
I asked her if she had anything to add before the interview concluded, and she said, “I thank God for the opportunity to be here, and I thank the Sisters of Mercy for believing in me. Thank you to everyone I’ve worked with for the wonderful accomplishments we have made.”
Mrs. Sucher, we wish you all the happiness in the world in your retirement. Thank you for being a wonderful role model in all of our lives. You will truly be missed!