Local Schools

Atchison academy installs new president

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, seated at center, with Abbot James Albers, OSB, installed David Trotter (left) as the new president of Maur Hill-Mount Academy in February. PHOTO BY MARY KATE ROCHE

by Jack Figge
Special to The Leaven

ATCHISON — Every Tuesday, David Trotter, the new president of Maur Hill-Mount Academy, and his leadership team spend 30 minutes in eucharistic adoration.

This time is critical, Trotter said, in the school’s mission of creating a high school culture focused on forming the next generation of missionary disciples.

Last August, the Maur Hill-Mount Academy board announced that Trotter would be the school’s new president. This February, he was installed during a Mass celebrated by Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann.

As president, Trotter said, his goal is to form students as missionary disciples for Christ.

“We are trying to help each of our students get to heaven and become saints. That is the goal. That is our sole purpose,” said Trotter. “We are a Catholic high school. The mission of the church is to evangelize, which means that is our mission as well. We’re here to propose the truth of the Catholic faith and teach it to our students. That’s essential to who we are and our mission.”

Prior to serving as president, Trotter worked for the Fellowship of Catholic University Students as the senior director of philanthropy. When he first saw that Maur Hill-Mount Academy was searching for a new president, he showed little interest. But after learning a little more about the school and being encouraged by friends and family, he decided to apply.

“I have two kids here. But even as a parent, I didn’t understand what was really happening at the high school,” he said. “And the more that I went through the process and began to talk with more people, the more I fell in love with what is currently happening here — and probably even more so the potential of what Maur Hill can be.”

Already, Trotter has noted areas he wants to see the school grow.

The academy is one of the few Catholic boarding schools in the country and currently has 23 boarding students. Trotter said that there is a lot of room for growth as the school can accommodate over 80 boarding students.

“Given our current cultural climate, parents of middle schoolers and high schoolers are looking for Catholic educational options for their children. They’re not satisfied with the local public school and sometimes even the local Catholic school,” said Trotter. “I think that we are a unique place with a special mission, meaning that we can be considered as a strong educational option for families outside of the Atchison area to send their children to.”

While he wants to focus on the school’s external growth, Trotter sees a greater call.

He wants to help create a dynamic Catholic culture within the school so that students are equipped with the foundation to be lifelong disciples. This begins, he believes, by modeling for students what it means to live an authentic Catholic life.

“We are tasked with equipping students with the tools to help them persist in the faith beyond college,” said Trotter. “I believe the most important thing that we can do is to model that ourselves. My personal time in front of the Blessed Sacrament is the most important thing I can do every day. Being able to model that and the graces that come through spending time in [eucharistic] adoration is what changes the needle for our students.”

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Jack Figge

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