SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Five students with separately unique talents joined together in September to begin working on the 2017-18 Union Catholic Yearbook.

Eight months later, after countless hours collaborating, designing and laying out the yearbook, UC's Yearbook Club, consisting of seniors Yitang (Brianna) Zhang, Lauren Messercola, Diantae Allen-Closs, Gabrielle Welle and Crystal Mota and under the direction of Mrs. Katie Sagendorf, completed something every student at UC will cherish forever. 

Zhang (who lives in North Plainfield), Messercola (Fanwood), Allen-Closs (Hillside), Welle (Metuchen), and Mota (Union) meshed all their various skills together to form more than 200 pages of memories that will last a lifetime. 

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They saw all their hard work rewarded when the eagerly anticipated yearbooks were handed out to UC's Class of 2018 at a special distribution event during on Monday. The underclassmen will receive their yearbooks next week. 

The very creative cover featured UC's Blue Hart, the "We Are UC'' slogan, and an assortment of images of cued up videos and other computer screen images, including the date (May 24, 2018) and time (10 a.m.) of graduation as they'd appear on a laptop screen.

Union Catholic's Blue Harts is a new tradition launched this school year in honor of Sister Percylee Hart, RSM, Principal of Union Catholic since 1980.

To symbolize the heart and vision that are the core of the UC Community, every student and staff member received a Blue Hart pin to be worn proudly each day. As graduating seniors, students receive a second Blue Hart pin to give to a person who had the most influence on them during their four years at Union Catholic.

"With the design of the cover, the Blue Hart was the first thing we thought of, and then we came up with the website page idea and put them both together,'' said Zhang, who designed the Class of 2018 Senior Sweatshirts. 

Messercola said the Blue Hart was a perfect way to show the spirit of Union Catholic and represented a strong symbol of the school year.    

"We really wanted to incorporate the Blue Hart because of Principal Sister Percylee Hart, and because it was something new thing that was brought to Union Catholic this year,'' said Messercola. "We felt it was important to incorporate that.'' 

Welle said it's very exciting to see her classmates flipping through the pages of the yearbook.  

"It's great to see all our hard work pay off, and it's very exciting to see all our peers see what we've accomplished and see how much they like it,'' said Welle. 

Messercola said this is something the whole Yearbook Club will never forget.

"It's nice to do something for our senior year that we'll remember forever,'' said Messercola. "We'll have this yearbook forever and we'll always be able to look at it to remember our high school years that we also did ourselves.''  

Mrs. Sagendorf was very impressed with the job her staff did. 

"This was a fantastic group of girls to work with,'' said Mrs. Sagendorf. "The nice thing is that everyone brought something different. Brianna is incredibly talented with graphic design and artistry. Gabby and Crystal were awesome with interviews and incorporating pictures. Diantae and Lauren were excellent at captions and developing the overall concept of what we wanted to accomplish. Each one of them brought something so different, and it really made for a better book. They were a great staff to work with. I will miss them a lot.''