Doogan ’23 Reflects on Confidence Gained Through His CBA Journey

Early on in his CBA career, Conor Doogan ’23 noticed a specific culture at the Academy that he wanted to capitalize on.

“There are so many opportunities here at CBA and I feel I really took advantage of them,” he said. “There is a lot of benefit to that. Getting involved in extracurriculars, you really get yourself uncomfortable, and the only way to become comfortable and improve is to be uncomfortable.”

Doogan pointed to the academic, extracurricular, faith and athletic components as driving forces behind making himself more comfortable.

“In different social settings and in the classroom, I have become more of a whole person because of it.”

As he prepares to attend the University of Scranton, he reflected on the classes, experiences and people who helped him succeed during his four years in Lincroft.

“One class that made me spring out of my shell was English with Mr. Cusick. I was able to know myself more and Mr. Cusick was tapping into what I could accomplish. It gave me a sense of believing in myself.”

Outside of the academic classroom, Doogan signified the role that CBA’s Guidance Office played in helping him feel at ease during the college search process.

“The guidance staff did a great job getting to know me, as they do with all of the students. Mrs. Maccarella was a great help, understanding me and really reaching out to me. Whether we want to hear it or not, guidance helps us get to where we need to be.”

Doogan receiving the Zapcic Award from Mr. Begley last month at the Academic Awards.

Once he travels to his new home in eastern Pennsylvania, he plans to enroll in Scranton’s doctorate of physical therapy program. From his experiences at CBA, he understands that he has his work ahead of him, but is confident he will fit in seamlessly.

“Everything that Scranton embodies, CBA embodies. They are faith devoted, a strong community, athletic-based, great people, and academic excellence as well.”

At April’s Lasalle Academic Awards, Doogan was announced as the winner of the 2023 Doctor William J. Zapcic Award, which is presented to the senior who, in the opinion of the administration, most exemplifies the spirit, ideals and achievements of Christian Brothers Academy.

It was a fitting honor for Doogan, as he has been extremely active in every facet of the Academy.

He has held leadership positions as varsity swimming team captain, creative director of the CBA Digital Network, a member of the Student Council, and an inductee into the National Honor Society. That is without mentioning his involvement as a CBA ambassador, liturgical minister, and a member of Lasallian Youth.

“I think it came down to getting my feet wet each and every year.”

While he will miss those experiences, Doogan noted something else when asked what he will miss the most about CBA.

“I think it is the little things; the drives in, the hallway conversations with my friends and teachers. I will miss the big stuff, but it’s mostly the little stuff that adds up to the bigger pictures.”

For years, Doogan has been leading prospective student tours as an ambassador, guiding new families through the wide-range of CBA offerings. As he prepares to graduate, he had one last piece of advice for incoming freshmen.

“Challenge yourself. There shouldn’t be a plan. There should be a guideline, but you have to have the ability to branch off and see where it takes you. CBA has all the tools to make a student successful, so keep yourself and your best interests in mind.”

So what thought will cross Doogan’s mind when he finally is handed his Academy diploma?

“Incredible. For me, it has been a wild ride, so many ups – and downs as well – but I wouldn’t change any of it for the world. Simply put, I am a different person because of CBA. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without all of my friends, without the opportunities CBA had to offer, and without my teachers.”

About Christian Brothers Academy:
Christian Brothers Academy (CBA) is a private, Catholic, academic preparatory school for boys located in Lincroft, New Jersey. Founded in 1959 and taught in the Lasallian tradition, CBA is dedicated to helping students become intellectually mature and morally responsible leaders for society. Through generous contributions from family and friends of the Academy, CBA awards over $1.7 million in scholarships and financial aid to current students. Experience the Academy at