It’s back! Steps for Students race returns for in-person run

November 23, 2021

Runners charge down San Jacinto Street in downtown Houston for the Steps for Students 5K Run/Walk in February 2020, the last time the annual event was held in-person. The race returns Feb. 12, 2022 at the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart. (File photo by James Ramos/Herald)

HOUSTON — One of the largest events in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston returns as an in-person event. In its 17th year, Steps for Students is a celebratory race where the Archdiocese’s Catholic schools to raise funds while also uniting people across the Archdiocese in downtown Houston in support of Catholic education.

After last year’s virtual event, organizers are confident there will be a large turnout in downtown on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022, at the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, located at 1111 St. Joseph Pkwy. Steps for Students raises funds and awareness for the network of 56 Catholic schools in the Archdiocese.

The event will start with a Mass at 6:30 a.m. followed by the presentation of the David Guite Spirit Award and President’s Cup. Daniel Cardinal DiNardo will bless everyone present just before the 5K race begins at 8 a.m.; a post-race party will follow in the Catholic School Village.

Debra Haney, superintendent of Catholic Schools, said she is thrilled to be able to plan the Steps for Students 5K as an in-person event this year.

“We were able to see the ingenuity of our school communities at work in the virtual race last year, and we are so appreciative of the efforts of our teachers and families to make it such a successful event,” she said. “We are looking forward to gathering as a community to celebrate the goodness of our Catholic schools and how well they have managed through this global pandemic.”

Father Richard “Luke” Millette, J.C.L., judicial vicar of the Archdiocese, has run the 5K event for three years — one of them virtually — and has already signed up for the 2022 Steps for Students. He said that as he reflects on Steps for Students, he is struck about how it is important for the schools in many different ways.

“There is of course the tangible benefit of raising money to make Catholic Education more accessible to those who need it, but there is also the benefit of gathering as a community to rekindle bonds of friendship and strengthen our shared values,” he said.

Father Millette said for almost two years, many of the faithful have faced different struggles, whether that is the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic or the sense of isolation that grew while forced to maintain distance from each other. In 2021, over 6,500 people registered for the virtual race and over $554,000 was raised to fund the unique needs of each of our Catholic schools.

“As things continue to slowly open up, I am accustomed to hearing the common refrain of how long it has been since we have seen each other and how happy they are to be getting together again,” he said. “In many ways, Steps for Students is a chance to move forward from the pandemic as we seek to help those who might be suffering economically so that they can receive a good education while at the same time giving us a chance to come together once again as a community for mutual support.”

The timed-5K registration fee is $20. The untimed-5K registration fee is $18. The Family Fun Run, which is a shorter run, is $17. All prices increase by $10 at 11:59 p.m. on Jan. 31, 2022. “Hit the Snooze for Students” is $18, giving participants the opportunity to support their school without participating in the run.

To register, or for more information, visit