Each month we will feature a member of our alumni (the League of Knights) to highlight their accomplishments after graduating from IC Catholic Prep. This month, we caught up with Katie (Konrath ‘98) Marsico. Katie is a graduate of Northwestern University, where she majored in journalism and earned a minor in English. She is currently a freelance writer and illustrator and has six children ranging in age from four to fourteen. Katie’s oldest, Maria, is a part of this year’s freshman class.
ICCP: What was your favorite subject in school?
Katie: My favorite subject was English. I had always loved writing, but my English teachers exposed me to entirely new angles of a subject that was and is a huge part of my life. They unraveled the “why”—the reasons for different types of writing—as well as the “how”—the myriad tools and methodologies we turn to as a means of articulating ideas, asserting opinions and arguments, expressing emotions, and telling stories.
ICCP: What is your best memory from your time at IC?
Katie: There are quite a few, so it’s not easy to pinpoint a single moment in time. However, one of the most memorable would have to be honors physics my sophomore year. Mrs. Fenton was nothing if not accessible to her students. Her patience and ability to make physics approachable and—dare I say it, fun!—stirred something in me. I learned that I was willing to push hard, ask questions, and take risks.
ICCP: What are some highlights from your career?
Katie: I initially worked as an editor in children’s reference publishing. When I “retired” in 2006 in anticipation of the birth of my second child, I had earned the title of managing editor . . . and a sufficient number of contacts to begin a new chapter of my career as an author. To date, I have written more than 200 reference books for children and young adults. Now the mother of six children, I have recently started to explore opportunities as an artist/illustrator. In my spare time, I help run a nearly 800-member local parents advocacy group.
ICCP: What is one other thing you would like to share with IC alumni?
Katie: This question is particularly meaningful for me in light of my eldest child, Maria, starting as an IC Catholic Prep freshman this year. As of fall 2018, we weren’t certain where she would attend school. After all, I was fortunate enough to receive a full-ride scholarship to IC—which was life-altering, considering that my mother was widowed and worked full-time.
Last year, I returned to ICCP to discuss my journalism background with Mr. Dronzek’s students. Class started as so many things do there . . . with a prayer. As my visit commenced, I was reminded of the power of that practice. No matter what chaos and bustle had filled the moments before, prayer had a restorative effect, a chance to find focus, clarity, and a sense of priority as a community.
I had always been aware of all that IC had meant for me. After my visit, however, I was suddenly aware of how much I wanted the IC experience for my daughter. After she attended an open house and shadowed, she delighted me by concluding (in a rare moment of synchronization) that she wanted it, as well.
For my family it’s about what felt so right about IC Catholic Prep. This includes the realization that ICCP is more than just another excellent school. It’s an exceptional community whose members are nurtured as individuals with distinct backgrounds, talents, and ambitions. A Catholic education at IC Catholic Prep is a four-year journey that was remarkable for me . . . and that I believe will be an equally incredible adventure for my daughter.
The League of Knights consists of amazing individuals doing great things all over the planet.
Please update your alumni profile to keep in touch and engage with your fellow Knights.