The Spring 2019 edition of the MESPY Awards was held May 16 in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Simon Theatre. The event included team-specific awards from each of Mercersburg’s seven spring varsity squads, as well as the announcement of this season’s MESPY award winners in a number of categories.
Pieces by 59 student artists—including 18 members of the Class of 2019—are on exhibit in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Cofrin Gallery and Small Gallery. A reception was held May 17 in the Cofrin Gallery.
Ten more members of Mercersburg’s Class of 2019 announced May 13 the destinations where they will continue their athletic careers in college beginning next fall. The group includes athletes headed to NCAA Division I and Division III institutions, and represents seven states: Pennsylvania, New York, Virginia, Georgia, Texas, California, and Washington.
Mercersburg’s Irving and Marshall societies have announced their officers for the 2019-2020 academic year. Next year’s society presidents will be Addie Jenkins ’20 (Irving) and Annaliesse Cantera ’20 (Marshall).
Mercersburg Academy hosted its Spring Dance Concert May 11 in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Simon Theatre. The performance featured a variety of genres, including jazz, tap, ballet, hip-hop, and more.
As studio host for NBC’s telecasts of English Premier League soccer and a veteran co-anchor of three Olympic Games for the network (in 2014, 2016, and 2018), Rebecca Lowe ’99 is no stranger to premier (or Premier) sporting events. Lowe added another big-ticket event to her resume May 4 where she co-hosted NBC’s coverage of the 145th Kentucky Derby from Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.
Mercersburg Academy will host four carillon recitals from the Irvine Memorial Chapel’s Swoope Carillon on Sundays in May. In addition to Mercersburg’s carillonneur Jim Brinson (May 12), guest carillonneurs will include Lisa Lonie (May 5), Doug Gefvert (May 19), and Elisa Tersigni (May 26).
Throughout the month of April, the 118 members of Mercersburg's senior class are giving their capstone presentations. All seniors are enrolled in one of the school's two capstone experiences—MAPS (Mercersburg's Advanced Program for Global Studies) or Springboard—and successful completion of one of these two experiences is a requirement for graduation. The Springtalks Showcase, a culminating event of Springtalks, will be held Monday, April 29, at 7 p.m. in the Burgin Center for the Arts' Simon Theatre.
Mercersburg Academy will hold its fourth annual Summer Faculty Institute for teachers and administrators August 12-16 on campus. Last year, 58 attendees took part in the weeklong event, including six from peer schools.
Erika L. Sánchez, the author of 2018 Mercersburg summer-reading selection I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, addressed the Mercersburg student body at a school meeting April 19 in the Irvine Memorial Chapel.
A pair of basketball student-athletes from Mercersburg’s senior class announced their college choices on April 17 (National Signing Day). Tiffany McGhie ’19 is headed to Division I Canisius College, and J.J. Chou ’19 will play at Division III Chapman University. Both were the leading scorers for their respective varsity teams this winter.
Four more members of Mercersburg’s Class of 2019 have announced the institutions at which they will continue their athletic careers at the collegiate level. They include football players Garrett Ammons ’19 (Gettysburg College), McGee Schnarrs ’19 (Susquehanna University), and Ryan Wiley ’19 (Trinity [Conn.] College), as well as boys’ soccer standout Colby Walker ’19 (Catholic University of America).
“Pictures of Poets,” a series of 12 large-scale photographic portraits by photographer Dean Davis, will be on exhibit March 21 through April 14 in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Cofrin Gallery. An artist reception will be held on Friday, April 5, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the Cofrin Gallery.
Members of James Buchanan High School’s Messa Voce and the Mercersburg Academy Chorale joined together for the second-straight year for a joint concert March 29. This year’s concert was held in the auditorium of James Buchanan High School.
Jesse Zhang ’20 earned a National Gold Key in the 2019 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards for his photograph "Into the Light.” Zhang, of Beijing, China, also received a Regional Gold Key and Honorable Mention for an essay and another photograph, respectively. A total of 20 works by Mercersburg students earned recognition at the national or regional levels.
Father Patrick Conroy, chaplain to the United States House of Representatives, spoke at a school meeting March 29 in the Irvine Memorial Chapel. A Jesuit priest, Father Conroy works with a group called OwningOurFaith, which has a goal of fostering dialogue and inclusion between the LGBTQ community and the Roman Catholic Church, both of which he will discuss at Friday’s school meeting.
Mercersburg Academy will host carillon recitals from the Swoope Carillon at Irvine Memorial Chapel in April. In addition to Mercersburg’s carillonneur Jim Brinson (April 14 and 21), guest carillonneurs will include Ed Nassor (April 7) and George Matthew (April 28).
Mercersburg Academy inducted 23 new members into its chapter of the Cum Laude Society, which recognizes the highest level of academic achievement within the school, during its annual Cum Laude Convocation on Friday, March 22 in the Irvine Memorial Chapel. Alice Albright P ’12, ’17 was the featured speaker.
Mercersburg’s seven spring varsity athletic teams are jumping into their respective schedules. The spring academic term began Tuesday, March 19, and the first varsity athletic contest of the season took place Thursday, March 21, when the Blue Storm boys’ varsity lacrosse squad hosted Kimball Union (N.H.) Academy.
Six Mercersburg Academy students, along with Director of Environmental Initiatives Will Willis and Director of Global Programs and Initiatives Leah Rockwell, attended this year’s International Student Leadership Symposium March 19-27 at Uplands College in White River, South Africa. It marked the 11th symposium for Mercersburg students to participate in since the inaugural event was held in 2007 in Oman.
Mercersburg’s Department of Athletics saluted great performances and accomplishments from the winter 2019 season March 19, when the second group of MESPYs were handed out along with individual team awards from the school’s 10 winter varsity sports.
A pair of legendary Mercersburg alumni—Larry Sheridan ’51 and Bob Leavitt (1903)—have been chosen for enshrinement in the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association Hall of Fame and the Pennsylvania Track & Field Coaches Association Hall of Fame, respectively.
Louisa May Alcott is best known as the author of Little Women, but during the Civil War, she held a different role when she served as a nurse at the Union Hotel Hospital in Georgetown in Washington, D.C. In her latest book, Louisa on the Front Lines: Louisa May Alcott in the Civil War, Samantha Lumby Seiple ’85 dives deeply into Alcott’s role as a nurse and its influence on her life and writing. Seiple’s work, which came out February 26 and is now available at many major retailers, is the first nonfiction book to focus on this lesser-known aspect of Alcott’s career.
Eight Mercersburg Academy students and a number of faculty volunteered their time February 24-26 helping to manage ski and snowshoe courses for the Special Olympics Maryland (SOMD) Winter Games at nearby Whitetail Ski Resort. Tricia Crocker, director of community engagement, coordinated the event.
The overall result of 2019’s Irving-Marshall Week at Mercersburg? The same as in 2018, and 2017, and 2016, with the John Marshall Literary Society outlasting the rival Washington Irving Literary Society for the fourth year in a row. Marshall won this year by a score of 1350-650 on the strength of a first-place Declamation finish by Elizabeth Heidecker ’19.
Carillon recitals at Mercersburg Academy’s Irvine Memorial Chapel will resume Sunday, March 24, following after the Academy’s spring vacation. Guest carillonneurs for the month of March include Jesse Ratcliffe (March 24) and Dr. Elisa Tersigni (March 31).
Mercersburg Academy presented its fifth-annual Winter Student Dance Showcase February 22 in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Simon Theatre. The event featured student-choreographed work from a variety of styles, including hip-hop, modern/contemporary, and jazz.
More than 300 people from Mercersburg and surrounding areas participated in the Relay For Life of Mercersburg on February 17. The event took place in the Hale Field House on campus and raised close to $30,000 for the American Cancer Society.
Mercersburg Academy will host the third-annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Service on Sunday, February 24, at 4 p.m. in the Irvine Memorial Chapel. The service is held by the Mercersburg Ministerium Association to commemorate the life and ministry of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. All are welcome to attend.
Mercersburg seniors Maddie Kennedy ’19 and Casey Nguyen ’19 organized the first-ever Mercersburg Film Festival, which took place February 16 at the Star Theatre, located at 23 West Seminary Street in Mercersburg.
Patrice McGloin ‘19 has been chosen as a Regional Finalist in the 2019 class of the Coca‑Cola Scholars Program, which moves her to the next round of the selection process to potentially become a Coca-Cola Scholar and receive a $20,000 college scholarship
Mathilda Zimmerman ’19 represented Mercersburg Academy at the Poetry Out Loud regional competition January 31 at the Majestic Theater in Gettysburg. Poetry Out Loud is a national program that encourages high-school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance, and competition.
Three student-athletes in Mercersburg’s senior class—Jillian Ahlgren ’19, Tag Curwen ’19, and Noah Litzinger ’19—have chosen the destinations where they will continue their athletic careers at the college level. Ahlgren (of Mercersburg) will play lacrosse and field hockey at Gettysburg College; Curwen (also of Mercersburg) is joining the swim team at Pomona College; and Litzinger (of Waynesboro, Pa.), is headed to play football at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
Instead of the usual class schedule on Wednesday, February 13, students took time to learn about healthy habits and engage in restorative activities as part of Mercersburg Academy’s Health and Wellness Day.
Congratulations to Alexa Marsh ’21 and Shoki Nemoto ’21, who are the student winners of the Winter “Inspired by Writing” Contest. Entrants submitted work in response to “Simile Song,” an imagery-rich poem by Ellie Wilkie ’19, who is a member of this year’s senior class from Alexandria, Va.
Stony Batter Players, Mercersburg’s student theatre company, gave three performances of Chicago: High School Edition February 8–10 in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Simon Theatre. Director of Theatre Laurie Mufson directed the show.
Join us in celebrating the service and accomplishments of distinguished alumni Steven Guttman ’64, James Snyder ’69, P ’05, Robert Hunter ’59, Joseph Huber ’64, Masroor Ahmed ’99, Bebe Lloyd ’94, and Magdalena Kala ’09. The group of seven will be honored Thursday, June 6, at the Faculty, Staff, and Alumni Recognition Dinner, which is hosted by the Alumni Council and officially kicks off Reunion Weekend 2019.
Mercersburg Academy will host recitals from the school’s Swoope Carillon each Sunday in February. Featured recitalists will include guest carillonneur Jesse Ratcliffe of Luray, Va., along with Academy Carillonneur James Brinson.
Jennifer Miller Smith ’97, who is in her 11th year on the Mercersburg faculty and has served as head of the science department since 2014, has been named the school’s dean of academics, a position she will assume at the end of the 2018-2019 school year.
Mercersburg’s two rival student literary societies have announced their lineups of declaimers for this winter’s highly anticipated Prize Speaking Contest (more commonly known as Declamation), which is the culminating event of Irving-Marshall Week.
Twenty-one pieces by 14 different Mercersburg Academy students have been chosen for recognition in the 2019 South Central Pennsylvania Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Work by Harriet Brown ’22, Lucy Bowman ’21, Cherie Sio ’20, Selina Xue ’20, and Jesse Zhang ’20 earned Gold Key awards and will advance to compete for awards at the national level.
Traces in the Wind, a four-person ensemble staged-reading and vocal performance based on the true-life stories of three Holocaust survivors, performed at the school meeting January 25 in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Simon Theatre. The performance was held two days before Holocaust Remembrance Day, which is Sunday, January 27.
Sera Chang ’20, a violinist, has been selected to perform in the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association Central Region Orchestra Festival, which will be held at Jersey Shore Area Senior High School (in Jersey Shore, Pa.) February 20-22 and will include approximately 100 of the best high-school musicians from more than 40 school districts.
The winter 2018-2019 issue of Mercersburg magazine is on its way to mailboxes, and you can access the digital version now. This issue, which specifically explores Mercersburg’s history from 1972 to the present, is the third in a three-part series highlighting and celebrating Mercersburg’s 125th anniversary.
During the afternoon of Monday, January 21, students and faculty took a break from the regular class schedule to participate in a variety of workshops, exploring diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
Fourteen Mercersburg students spent four days at Columbia University in New York City January 17-20 for the 18th-annual Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition (CMUNCE XVIII). The event was held on Columbia’s campus in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhattan.
The 126th football season at Mercersburg Academy—which fielded its first football team in 1894—will be unlike any of the previous 125 at the school. In 2019, Mercersburg joins a growing number of preparatory and public schools across the country in a move to eight-player football, which is a more wide-open version of the classic American sport played with eight players per side compared with 11.
Educational consultant Alexandra Scott was the featured speaker at a school meeting Friday, January 18. Scott’s talks and workshops focus on the emergence of transgender and gender non-binary students and adults.
“The Isolated Figure,” an exhibit by New York City-based professional artist Bruce Williams, opened at Mercersburg Friday, January 11. The show features a total of 29 pieces from Williams in the Burgin Center for the Arts’ Cofrin Gallery and gallery niche. Williams will be on campus visiting classes and attending an artist reception at the exhibit on Friday, January 18 from 6:30-8 p.m.
Head of School Katie Titus announced this week the appointment of William “Bill” Kissick as Mercersburg Academy’s chief development officer. Kissick comes to Mercersburg from St. Paul’s School in Concord, N.H., and will relocate to Mercersburg this summer.
Eight students from Colegio Alemán de San Felipe, which is Mercersburg’s sister school in central Chile, arrived at Mercersburg January 10 for the 12th year of the exchange between the two schools. The group is spending four weeks at Mercersburg and is scheduled to return to Chile February 9.
Approximately 220 student musicians from Franklin and Fulton counties in Pennsylvania rehearsed and performed at Mercersburg Academy as part of the Franklin-Fulton County Band Festival on Friday and Saturday, January 11-12. This was the first time since 2007 that Mercersburg has hosted the event, which rotates between Franklin-Fulton County Music Educators Association member schools.
A school meeting January 11 spotlighted a panel discussion on immigration in the United States with three Mercersburg Academy alumni as panelists and history faculty member David Bell as the moderator. The panel included attorneys Aaron Chiu ’99 of Washington, D.C., and Joshua Bratter ’91, P ’21, of Miami, Fla., as well as Ann Fegley Rodriguez ’97, a legal assistant from Wake Forest, N.C.
Students in Sydney Caretti’s Studio Art class traveled to New York City January 11-13 to experience the sights, sounds, cuisine and art of New York. This was the fifth year Caretti, an arts faculty member, has taken students on this trip.
Founded in 1893 in the heart of Pennsylvania and the Mid-Atlantic, Mercersburg is a private, coed, college preparatory boarding school with approximately 435 students (15 percent are day), grades 9-12 and postgraduate.
We offer 170 courses, including AP and Honors, more than $7 million in financial aid, 26 varsity sports, and a state-of-the-art performing and visual arts center. Located 90 minutes from Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, and within easy driving distance of New York City, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. 300 East Seminary Street, Mercersburg, PA 17236 GPS Address: 10951 Buchanan Trail West, Mercersburg, PA 17236 717-328-6173