Ashley Schroder ‘22 chose to come to Oakcrest in seventh grade for several reasons: she was drawn by the school’s academic excellence, the fact that it was all girls, and how faith is an essential element, both in the curriculum and the general life of the community. Now in her senior year, Ashley is serving Oakcrest as Student Council President.
Throughout her time at Oakcrest, Ashley has taken many enriching classes that left an impression on her. She points to Algebra II Honors as a particularly outstanding class. She remembers that when Oakcrest had to switch to distance learning for a while because of the pandemic lockdowns, her teacher went above and beyond the call of duty, staying on the class Zoom calls for hours answering students’ additional questions, listening to updates on their lives, and giving them advice.
As Student Council President, Ashley works on bringing the entire student body together for events that encourage school spirit as well as service and leadership. She gave each and every grade a warm welcome on the first days of school for both the Middle School and the Upper School, leading Common Homerooms and giving Oakies an overview of the upcoming year. In addition to leading the Student Council, Ashley is a seasoned student-athlete. She runs on the Varsity cross country team and competes on the Varsity swim and Varsity lacrosse teams as well, serving as a captain for both. This past spring she received Oakcrest’s 2020-2021 Athlete of the Year award.
Ashley’s dedication to service and leadership doesn’t end within the walls of Oakcrest. She founded and runs a charity helping the homeless, a 501 (c) 3 organization called Happy Cakes. Ashley started Happy Cakes in sixth grade; the name came from its start as a baked goods sale to raise money for care packages for the homeless. “I originally started the charity because I saw the need in the community to help the homeless, and I was always looking for a way to give back and to give me purpose,” Ashley says. “This need to serve others has always been ingrained in me.”
This year marked two exciting firsts for Happy Cakes, including its first annual donation drive. It was also the first year that Happy Cakes made multiple care package deliveries in one year. Ashley usually delivers the packages to the homeless each Christmas morning, but this year she has made four deliveries. Each package had a value of about two hundred dollars. Other Oakcrest students participated in the assembly and delivery of the package deliveries as well.
Ashley has many favorite Oakcrest memories. Some favorite experiences include class cheers on Field Day, the junior retreat, and going to states with the swim team. At the end of the day, the thing that Ashley loves most about Oakcrest is the people– in her words, “The friends that I have been able to make here and that the bond that we are able to share is based on a shared set of values and beliefs.”