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Teachers Helped Her to Succeed

February 11, 2019
By Deb Daley

Work is bringing Sarita Schroeder Hollander ’97 Visual Media Manager, HDR, back to Mercy High School in February.  She will be coordinating photography for the firm, showcasing the recent renovations that have been made in the school’s science laboratories.  HDR was the architectural designer on the project.

The wife and mother of two boys remembers fondly her time at Mercy from1993-1997.  Her parents wanted her to go to a private school and Sarita wanted to go to an all-girls school.  Several of her classmates from Our Lady of Lourdes grade school attended Mercy so she got on board.  Antoinette Ferrara Schroeder '73, her mother, and eight of her mother’s sisters also attended Mercy.

Although she wasn’t the strongest student and she had to work during her high school years to help pay bills, she recalls fondly two teachers that showed her care, attention and encouragement. 

“Teachers make all the difference in the world.  They have an important and powerful impact on a student.  Ms. Heather Newville took the time to explore nontraditional ways to test me, so my grades didn’t fail.  And Ms. Sherri Hoffman’s teaching style and passion will always stand out to me,” she said. 

According to Sarita, attending an all-girls school also allowed the atmosphere to be relaxed and the conversations to be deep with few judgements. 

She attended the University of Nebraska Omaha and switched to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln her second year where she discovered that an Arts path was her destiny.  Sarita also discovered she learned better through unconventional methods and not a traditional lecture, university style.  She moved back to Omaha, attended a community college, and earned a degree in Graphic Communication Arts.  She honed her artistic skills while at Borsheims for more than 10 years, launching the firm’s first website and being responsible for all photography. 

She has been with HDR for 11 years and currently manages the company’s global photography and cinematography studio.  She travels several times a month to capture the buildings and tell stories based on HDR architects’ work.   

Have ideas for other alumnae features, contact Deborah Daley, Communications and Marketing Director,


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