Meet the Pajnigars!
Off the top of her head, Cathie Adam Pajnigar (’95) lists as many extra-curricular activities as she can remember doing in high school – cheerleading, student council, liturgical planning, and yearbook.
“Back then there seemed to be a club for everything,” Pajnigar smiled as she recalled. “I also played softball but I sat the bench most of the time.”
But still, she was part of the team. That’s what she values the most about Gross Catholic – a sense of belonging. Moreover, Pajnigar believes that sense of belonging builds confidence at what is often a tumultuous time in a young person’s life. Back then, Gross Catholic students could be involved in any number of activities, whether it be play a sport, write for the school newspaper, or perform in the spring musical. That tradition of belonging still reigns true today at Gross Catholic.
Pajnigar wanted that same positive high school experience for her own children, so she chose Gross Catholic once again. Twins James and Thomas are sophomores this year, and Ben is a freshman. Next year, daughter Ava, an eighth-grader at St. Bernadette, will join her brothers. Throughout their childhood, Pajnigar brought her kids to Gross Catholic’s football games, basketball games, summer camps and special events as she continued her own relationship with her alma mater.
James and Thomas are happy their parents chose Gross Catholic, agreeing with their mom that there are a lot of activities and opportunities for them at school. They also appreciate the helpful teachers. For Ben, “It’s an opportunity to meet new friends coming from different schools.”
Her husband, Arman, has become a proud part of the Cougar Family too. Having graduated from a large public school in Lincoln, and then attending a smaller college, he appreciates how smaller class sizes allow more personal interaction between students and teachers. “I’m not a big fan of someone getting lost in the numbers.”
As an alumnae and current parent, Pajnigar knows first-hand that Gross Catholic hasn’t changed much since her time as a student, maintaining its proud traditions and rich 50-year history. Gross Catholic has always felt like home and last year she joined the staff part-time as the school’s nurse.
Teen years can be so awkward, but students can come to Gross and be themselves. It’s comforting to know Gross Catholic still has “that feeling of home and closeness … that same family environment,” she said. “If you want to try out for something, you don’t have to worry, because at Gross Catholic, you will be accepted.”
Pictured: Cathie and Arman Pajnigar (front row) and children Ava, Thomas, James and Ben (back row).
About Gross Catholic
One of Nebraska’s premier private schools, Gross Catholic High School is a faith and family-based community committed to developing Christian leaders through academic excellence in the Marianist tradition. Recognized locally for its outstanding education, welcoming atmosphere, competitive sports programs, engaging activities, robust faith, and boundless service work, Gross Catholic has energized the Omaha area for over 50 years. We are Faithful, Compassionate, and Driven!
To discover the Gross Catholic difference, contact us at 402.734.2000 or visit our Admissions page at grosscatholic.org.