There are two kinds of nights in the Writing Center: you're either working in a busy traffic intersection or in a mellow cafe. Both are equally valuable experiences. On a traffic-intersection kind of night, you'll meet with loads of classmates from every grade and subject. Each of them plops down in front of you, some more worried than others (depending on the due date of the assignment), and shares ideas, writing styles, and personal opinions. Although you are the one technically helping them, it feels like a mutually beneficial experience. Over the past two years, I have been privileged to learn so much about new peers, new cultures, and new perspectives. By the end of the help session, it feels like you both know each other in a different way.
As many of you may remember, January 15, March 10, and April 10 are big dates in the world of admission. With April 10 now behind us, we are thrilled to share that we are welcoming 149 new students to our community for the 2019-2020 school year. This marks the second consecutive year that Mercersburg was fully enrolled on the decision deadline.
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.
For Trini Hoffman, director of student activities, a weekday at Mercersburg is all about preparing for the weekend. With the help of the Student Activities Committee (SAC) and the Student Council, Hoffman plans roughly 120 activities for students to participate in throughout the school year—everything from dances to bingo and casino nights to trips to Philadelphia or New York City and more. Hoffman and her student volunteers even bring in performers such as Dueling Pianos (the entertainment planned for this coming Saturday).
Yesterday, I overheard my wife telling one of our nine-year-old twin daughters, "It's the little things." She had been trying to sneak candy without permission, a small and fairly meaningless choice, but one that could lead to larger problems down the line. While not an unusual conversation for a parent to have with their child, it's the greater meaning of the phrase, "It's the little things" that resonates with me.
“This trip has taught me so much about communication and hard work. My host family and I don't speak the same language, but we can still communicate and tell jokes. I wouldn't trade this experience for anything.”—Mia Ingram '21
Over spring vacation, nine students traveled with faculty members Jeff Cohen and Trini Hoffman to Costa Rica. This is the ninth-such trip that Mercersburg has made to the country, a tradition that started in 2006 and has continued biennially since 2009. In the following article, students share their experiences and reflections as recorded in the trip's blog.
The OneMercersburg Annual Fund Challenge (which launched earlier this year) presents the school with a unique opportunity to earn $1.5 million toward endowed financial aid. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, every new gift to this year’s Annual Fund has been matched by $125 that is designated for financial aid. Additionally, if parent participation reaches 75 percent, that will unlock an additional $50,000.
Coming from southeast Asia, I was never exposed to skiing before joining the Mercersburg Outdoor Education (MOE) Ski Mountaineering program. Learning to ski has been one of the most unforgettable experiences of my life. There have been moments of frustration and numerous moments of joy as well. New beginnings can be intimidating at first, but my instructors and peers have always been available to help and support me. I have also learned that it is OK to struggle, because there is always room for improvement. Perfection is the result of perseverance and commitment. As long as I have the will and determination to keep going, my skills will improve over time.
When Mercersburg's winter term gets underway and the weather turns cold, students in Mercersburg Outdoor Education (MOE) head for the slopes as part of either the ski mountaineering program or the downhill ski and snowboarding program. In the first of a two-part series on these winter activities, Clarissa Thompson '20 shares her experiences with MOE's downhill ski and snowboarding. She travels regularly to Whitetail Ski Resort (about seven miles south of campus) to work toward becoming a certified ski instructor.
Before this year, I had never heard of Relay for Life. Although several members of my family have been affected by cancer, I was never directly involved with the American Cancer Society. It wasn't until I joined Community Engagement, Mercersburg's community-service team, that I learned more about the phenomenal fundraising event that aims to spread awareness and raise money for cancer research. As part of the Community Engagement team, I have worked with my peers to plan and market the event. This year's Relay for Life of Mercersburg will take place Sunday, February 17, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Hale Field House on campus and will be decorated in a theme of the board game Candyland.
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