Our Lady of Mercy High School (New York)
|Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women|
|1437 Blossom Road
Rochester, New York, (Monroe County) 14610
|Motto||Via, Veritas et Vita
("The Way, The Truth and The Life")
|Religious affiliation(s)||Roman Catholic
Sisters of Mercy
|Director||Nancy Wunder (middle school)|
|Color(s)||Navy Blue and White|
|Slogan||For women who make a difference.|
|Accreditation||Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools|
|Publication||Mercedes (literary magazine)|
|Tuition||$6,750 for Grade 6; $8,600 for Grades 7 and 8; $9,200 for Grades 9-12 (2014-2015)|
|Admissions Director||Mary Cannon|
|Athletic Director||Dr. Nicholas Schlierf|
Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women is a private all-girls Catholic school teaching grades 6-12, located in Brighton, Monroe County, New York near Rochester. It is located within the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester.
The American Sisters of Mercy founded Our Lady of Mercy High School in Rochester in 1928, based in the tradition of the Roman Catholic sisterhood begun by Catherine McAuley, founder of the Sisters of Mercy. The building was built in 1928, and designed by noted Rochester architect J. Foster Warner (1859-1937). It educated young women in grades 9-12 for the first six decades of its operation, branching out to include grades 7 and 8 in 1990. In September 2012, Our Lady of Mercy expanded to include grade 6. To reflect this change, it will change its name to Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women. The school's mission is to educate young women intellectually, personally, and spiritually, teaching them independence and allowing them to realize their full potential. Mercy is committed to helping students develop their talents to meet 21st century challenges. Mercy's slogan is "For women who make a difference."
Throughout the year, students participate in many traditions, some dating to the earliest days of the school. The classes compete during Spirit Week and the competition culminates on Field Day. The school hosts an annual fundraiser, the Spirit Gala, in the fall. Homerooms adopt a family and provide Christmas Baskets during December. The gifts are blessed at Golden Mass, usually celebrated by the Bishop. March is Mission Month, in which students raise money for local, national and international charities through a Mission Mania event with McQuaid Jesuit High School, crafts sold by seniors, and other school-wide fundraisers. Arts Fest provides students a chance to show off their talents; this day-long event includes indoor and outdoor performance assemblies, a concert from a local professional group, and hour-long workshops in various areas taught by teachers and other professionals. In May, many girls take their fathers to the Father Daughter Dinner Dance.
During May, the juniors receive their class rings. Mercy is known for its unique school ring. While most high school rings incorporate gems, the center of the Mercy ring is dominated by the school crest (a cross encircled by the Latin motto <Via, Veritas et Vita>, meaning <the Way, the Truth, and the Life>). The shank on both sides of the ring feature a rising sun with the open Bible among the rays. After their ring ceremony the Juniors attend Junior Prom in the evening. Towards the end of May, May Day is held. A senior is elected May Queen and has a court of peer elected juniors and seniors that help her organize the ceremony. After Mary is crowned in the Grotto, the seniors prepare for Senior Ball. The year ends in June with the Moving Up Ceremony where the classes provide advice to the classes below them. At the end, the student body moves up seats in the auditorium and the seniors join hands and walk to the stage.
Retreats are also a part of Mercy tradition. Freshman retreat is held in school, while Sophomore and Junior retreats are a day long event. Senior retreat is an overnight at Camp Stella Maris and is one of the last times the senior class will spend together.
Mercy offers many extracurriculars to choose from. There is a fall drama, a spring musical, and a Children's Theatre production. Students may lead the school through Student Council or Campus Ministry Board. Mercy is home to the Catherine McAuley chapter of the National Honor Society, as well as groups that volunteer with inner city children and elder Sisters of Mercy. FOCUS emphasizes diversity, and students can join Spanish Club or Francofilles, the French Club. Youth and Government, Mock Trial and DECA all give students real life skills in practice settings. Robotics, Masterminds and Math League test students' knowledge, while Veritas (the yearbook), The Quill (the newspaper), and Mercedes (the literary magazine) give students a creative outlet. Students can join the Ski Club, Run Club, or Boxing Club. Habitat for Humanity and Friends of Rachel help students get involved with the community both in and outside of school. Improv Club, Water Club, and Dress-a-Girl are some of the newer options for students. There is also a choir, a show choir and an orchestra for the musically inclined.
Varsity and junior varsity teams compete in sixteen sports: alpine skiing, basketball, bowling, cheerleading, crew, cross country, golf, indoor track, lacrosse, sailing, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. The teams have won 29 Section V championships in the areas of basketball, bowling, cross country, downhill skiing, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, and volleyball.
- Mimi Kennedy, actress
- Elizabeth Streb, choreographer, winner of MacArthur Foundation Genius Award
- Abby Wambach, two-time Olympic Gold Medalist in Soccer and 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup Winner
Notes and references
- MSA-CSS. "MSA-Commission on Secondary Schools". Archived from the original on March 25, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-27.
- Sixth Grade Flyer, http://mercyhs.com/files/2012_Mercy_Sixth_Grade_Flyer.pdf
- "Our Lady of Mercy to Add 6th Grade," http://www.democratandchronicle.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/201206071803/NEWS01/306070051&nclick_check=1
- Mission and Vision, http://mercyhs.com/about-mercy/mission-and-vision
- Clubs, http://mercyhs.com/academics/clubs
- Mercy Sports, http://mercyhs.com/athletics/mercy-sports