St. Mary's Ryken High School

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St. Mary's Ryken High School
22600 Camp Calvert Road
Leonardtown, Maryland, (St. Mary's County) 20650
United States
Coordinates 38°17′16″N 76°37′35″W / 38.28778°N 76.62639°W / 38.28778; -76.62639Coordinates: 38°17′16″N 76°37′35″W / 38.28778°N 76.62639°W / 38.28778; -76.62639
Type Private, Coeducational
Religious affiliation(s) Roman Catholic
Established 1981
President Mary Joy Hurlburt
Principal Rick Wood
Grades 912
Enrollment 700[1]
Average class size 21
Student to teacher ratio 13:1[1]
Campus size 87 acres (350,000 m2)
Color(s) Blue, Green and White             
Athletics conference WCAC (Washington Catholic Athletic Conference)
Nickname Knights
Accreditation Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools[2]
Tuition $14,300[1]
Dean of Academics Brad Chamberlain [1]
Athletic Director BJ Pumroy

St. Mary's Ryken High School, located on an 87-acre (350,000 m2) campus on Breton Bay, is a coeducational, secondary school sponsored by the Xaverian Brothers.[3] SMR is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools [4] and is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools,[5] and recognized as an independent, Catholic school by the Archdiocese of Washington [6] and the Maryland State Department of Education.[7]

The campus has a 1,000-seat sports stadium with a turf field and six-lane track and six buildings: Paschal Hall; Rupert Hall; Romuald Hall; Xavier Hall; Alumni Hall (cafeteria); and Lambert Hall (business office).

Approximately 99% of each graduating class pursues a higher education at a college, university or military service academy. In the Class of 2014, students received almost $12.7 million in scholarship offers.[3]

St. Mary's Ryken provides education for almost 700 students in grades 9-12 and is the only Catholic high school affiliated with the Archdiocese of Washington in the three Southern Maryland counties. Students come from St. Mary's, Calvert, Charles and southern Prince George's counties.

The school colors are blue, green and white, and the official mascot is the knight.


St. Mary's Ryken was established in 1981 and traces its roots in Catholic education to St. Mary's Academy (est. 1885) and Ryken High School (est. 1956).

The Sisters of Charity of Nazareth ( opened St. Mary's Academy (SMA) in 1885 on the grounds of the property known as Rose Hill in Leonardtown. Mrs. Richard H. Miles bequeathed the property to Father Charles Jenkins, S.J., with the intent that it be used by "a religious order to conduct a Catholic school." SMA grew rapidly as a coeducational boarding school and accepted students from kindergarten through twelfth grade. The burgeoning population of St. Mary's County and Southern Maryland soon rendered the academy too small and a new school building was erected in 1936. In 1956, the school expanded yet again with a dormitory, convent and chapel. With the opening of the new, all boys Ryken High School, the sisters carried on their selfless dedication as a school for young women.

In 1916, to their good fortune, the Xaverian Brothers purchased over one hundred acres along Breton Bay from Mr. Enoch Abell and opened a camp for boys known as Camp Calvert. Young men flocked from the cities to spend a few weeks of their summer vacations there. The brothers' vision for this property was to eventually build a school and novitiate for boys and, in 1956, their dream became reality with the opening of Ryken High School (RHS). The school, named after Theodore James Ryken, founder of the Xaverian order, served as a juniorate for those with vocations to the Xaverian Brothers as well as a high school for young men.

Eventually, with a diminishing number of boarders and vocational candidates, both SMA and RHS closed their dormitories and operated solely as Catholic high schools. SMA and RHS supported each other through sports programs, theater and music productions, dances, proms and academic instruction. By the late 1970s, both schools experienced declining enrollments and agreed to merge into one coeducational Catholic high school.

In 2009, St. Mary's Ryken embarked on the first significant reshaping of its campus in almost 30 years. Phase 1 of the Strategic Master Plan was put into action with the groundbreaking for the SMR Athletic Complex. In this year, all of Paschal Hall was air conditioned and an annex was added that includes an office for the Athletics Director and a new boys' team and locker room. A 340-space parking lot was built on the grounds of the old student parking lot and the field and track behind Paschal Hall. Construction of the new 1,000-seat stadium with pressbox, artificial turf field and six-lane track was completed in August 2010.

Student life[edit]


The last period of the day is called "X-hour" (Xaverian hour)and this is when students can participate in one of over 50 clubs and/or a study hall. In 2011, the Mock Trial team won the 7th Circuit Championship for the fourth consecutive year.(


St. Mary's Ryken is a member of the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference (WCAC - It is one of the most competitive conferences in the country, with many of the teams nationally ranked. The student athletes in this conference are some of the most heavily recruited by NCAA Division I colleges and universities.

The varsity softball team captured the 2014 WCAC conference title.[8] Other athletics champions: in 2010, a member of the SMR golf team won the individual WCAC golf championship; in 2007, the boys lacrosse team won the WCAC conference title.

Fall sports: cross country, field hockey, cheerleading, football, sailing, soccer, tennis and volleyball; Winter sports: basketball, cheerleading, ice hockey, swimming and wrestling; Spring sports: baseball, golf, lacrosse, sailing, softball, tennis and track & field

Fine arts[edit]

The fine arts are an important part of the St. Mary's Ryken student body. Concert band, orchestra, jazz band, Shakespearean drama, drama, dance, chorus, photography, art appreciation, pre-architecture, pottery, sculpture, photography and studio art are the main fine art classes and clubs. Each has at least one concert, rehearsal or showcase during the school year with all disciplines participating in the annual Fine Arts Festival.


St. Mary's Ryken is a Catholic school, but it is open to students of all faiths. The school holds liturgies and Mass periodically in the gym, and all students are required to take four years of theology classes; however, students do have the option to take Global Bridges, a global awareness class, their junior year, and philosophy in their senior year.

Students frequently take part in mission programs. Their latest trip was to Camden, NJ, where the students helped out at the Romero Center. The students also made a trip to nearby Philadelphia, PA, to participate in some other service projects. At the end of the trip, students had dinner with some of the local members of the church that supports the Romero Center, the main hub of the Camden Mission Trip.

During X-Hour, students can participate in Mass every Monday or Reconciliation every Tuesday, which is held by the school's Teen Life Catholic Ministry Program. A new Catholic program they are implementing is Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, which will take place every Friday during X-Hour.


Boys and girls wear button-down shirts in the winter and polo shirts in the summer. The polo shirt colors are navy blue, white and forest green. Polos with a club or sport logo are also worn. Boys wear khaki dress pants in the winter and khaki shorts in the summer. Girls wear knee-length pleated kilts in khaki, but also have the option to wear pants and shorts. Freshman and sophomore boys wear green and blue SMR ties. The winter uniform includes a blazer for juniors and seniors and a sweater for underclassmen.

General information[edit]

Full-time faculty : 55

Full-time administrators : 4

Full-time staff : 24

AP Classes offered : 24[1]


Students must complete 28 credits and 65 hours of community service to graduate.[9] They are required to take four social studies credits, four English, four religion (except in the case of transfer students), four math, three science, three of the same foreign language, one fine arts, one technology, one physical education, and four electives. Courses are taken at the college preparatory, honors or Advanced Placement level.

Notable alumni[edit]

External links[edit]

Notes and references[edit]