LCA’s Great Lake Shake

The Great Lake Shake, created by LCA in 2017 as the first of its kind in Northeast Ohio, gives sixth grade students an opportunity to master communication skills that are invaluable for being successful as they look to high school, college, and beyond. This innovative educational experience was developed to address the rapid deterioration of interpersonal communication skills in students around the world. Many business leaders have publicly stated that the number one job skill that new employees are lacking is strong communication skills. Additionally, leading research from Harvard University, Boston College, and the University of Michigan indicates that social skills and communication abilities are critically important and are traditionally undervalued in primary and secondary schools. LCA has been recognized by Today’s Catholic Teacher as a School of Innovation for the creation of this unique student learning experience.

The Great Lake Shake allows LCA’s students to participate in a fun-filled competitive experience that celebrates interpersonal communication skills. The Great Lake Shake calls for students to interact with a wide variety of adult leaders from our community. Students are expertly trained then challenged to demonstrate strong verbal and non-verbal communication skills. They are evaluated on their manners, conversational skills, proper handshakes, eye contact, and professional appearance.

The competition features over 60 Cleveland area leaders who visit LCA’s campus to serve as independent judges. The students compete in three rounds prior to announcing the finalists:

  • In round one, students enjoy breakfast with educational leaders.
  • In round two, students mix and mingle with business professionals while enjoying mocktails.
  • In round three, students have one minute to introduce themselves and make a great first impression with over 20 different judges in a speed meet and greet session.

At the conclusion of the three rounds of competition, the top six students are announced and are taken by limousine to their final surprise challenge, which varies from year to year. The final celebrity judge selects the top two students, and they are crowned Champions of the Great Lake Shake. These students are invited to compete in a national tournament in Atlanta, Georgia at The Ron Clark Academy. We are proud that LCA’s students continue to rank competitively in the national competition!

Past Champions:

  • 2023 – Marichelle Bou Jebrayel and Meghan Gray
  • 2022 – Bea Jarchow and Case Taseff
  • 2021 – Emma Kure and Marin Petti
  • 2019 – Gianni Salerno and Molly Williams
  • 2018 – Nina Harris, Kendall Leonard, Joey Scarpitti
  • 2017 – Annabella DeFrasia and Eleanor Mitchell

Past Finalists:

  • 2023 – Mary Brocklehurst, Colin Masterson, Timmy Simmerly, Nico Tybuszewski
  • 2022 – Penny Guzowski, Anna McGowan, Peter Nowlin, and Conner Theofilos
  • 2021 – Jack Arbeznik, Alma Mackey, Henry McKenna, and Mather Taseff
  • 2019 – James Brocklehurst, Dean Jensen, Francesca Sowinski, and Sophie Stehlik
  • 2018 – Maggie Barmann, Grace Birt, Karlo Hepp, and Anthony Reali
  • 2017 – Abby Brocklehurst, Maren Jacobs, Cole Trainor, and Samantha Warzocha

Past Amazing Shake Finalists at The Ron Clark Academy, Atlanta GA:

  • 2023 – Mather Taseff
  • 2020 – Sofia Salerno and Nathan Sinchak
  • 2018 – Cole Trainor
  • 2017 – Eleanor Mitchell

Wondering what The Great Lake Shake looks like? Take a look at this video that highlights the memorable experience for our sixth grade Saints at LCA!