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Hemmady is named Man of the Year Runner-up


Not knowing how to skate would deter most athletes from even attempting to play hockey. But doing difficult things in order to pursue his passions is just one of the many reasons why Arjun Hemmady ’24 was nominated for this year’s Man of the Year Award. 

Mr. Steven Schillig ’14 has seen Hemmady’s growth over the last four years. He was Hemmady’s scripture teacher, JV hockey coach and sponsor for the RCIA program earlier this year and has seen incredible change over the last four years. Schillig mentioned the actions that Hemmady took as a member of the hockey team, showing up early to practices and being a spiritual leader of the team. 

When it came to games, he held a radical positivity while maintaining a competitive spirit, often checking to make sure if opposing players were okay if they fell near him,” said Schillig. “He often led prayers in the locker room, encouraged his teammates and bolstered the spirits of us coaches when things weren’t going our way.”

Hemmady also is a member of the tennis and hockey teams, club hockey being something that he plans on playing next year at Creighton University. Kentaro Akiyoshi ’24 has been his teammate on the tennis team for four years and has also witnessed Hemmady’s leadership and character. 

“His great leadership skills are present beyond the tennis court, and his care and passion to help others have helped our team grow and become the best team in the state,” said Akiyoshi

Hemmady finds real pride in his involvement in the Active Minds Club, Brophy’s branch of a teen mental health awareness organization, and considers it a significant part of his high school experience. He and Jack Sebald ’24 expanded the service of the club in a direct effort to provide a space for students struggling with their mental health. 

“With struggling with my mental health coming into my freshman year, I had some people stand up for me, now I’m trying to give that back and now be a person that can stand up for others,” said Hemmady.

Faith was always something that Hemmady said he struggled with, rather than something that could give him peace. But it was after a formative experience during his freshman year that for the first time, Hemmady really got a sense of what his faith could bring him. 

“It was during my freshman scripture class with Mr. Schillig, that when I walked into the class, the first thing I felt was love and I grew close to Catholic Social Teaching,” said Hemmady.

Following the RCIA process this past year, he was baptized on April 14 and became a full member of the Catholic church. But Hemmady said that the process was not easy because of the social repercussions that he faced as a result of his conversion.

“Coming from a Hindu family, it’s not seen as a really acceptable thing to convert to Catholicism,” said Hemmady. “I know that not everyone in my life is comfortable with my change in faith.”

But that has not fazed him, and the words of Father Bill Muller, S.J. still echo around his head to this day. 

[Muller] said if people don’t love you for who you are, they’re not loving you. And that’s when it clicked in me. Like, if I’m not loving myself, then what’s the point of me living this life that, you know, it’s not something that I want to live?” 

Hemmady has spread this love through his leadership and participation in the Swift Youth Foundation, an organization focused on creating connections between “economically disadvantaged youth and college bound teens.”

“I had an encounter with the camper last summer where he told me it was the first time he felt loved and that kind of brought it all full circle for me,” said Hemmady. “That kind of sparked what I want to do, and I want to show others that they are loved.”

Next year, Hemmady plans to attend Creighton and be on the BSBA track, where he will receive a bachelor’s degree in business administration so that he can hopefully attend medical school afterward. Still aiming to help others in any way he can. 

When asked for advice to give to younger students trying to make an impact like he did, Hemmady mentioned the influence that one person can make on their community. 

“It really just takes one person to see an issue and do something about it for it to have a greater impact on the community,” said Hemmady. “So don’t be afraid. Just do what your heart calls you to do.”

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Jack Kyle
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