Monthly Archives: April 2021

School’s 170-year history officially recognized by the State Senate

A group of Mount St. Mary Academy students, administrators, staff and alumnae were invited to the Arkansas State Senate meeting on Tuesday, April 6, to attend the presentation of Senate Resolution 10, which officially recognized the school for its 170 years of service to the State of Arkansas. Sr. Deborah Troillett, RSM ’73 opened the meeting with a prayer, which made the occasion even more special. State Senator Missy Thomas Irvin ’89 wrote and filed the resolution.

 

Mount St. Mary Academy celebrated its 170th birthday earlier this year on February 5. Founded in 1851 by the Sisters of Mercy at the request of Arkansas’ first Catholic bishop, Andrew Byrne, it is the state’s oldest continuously operated school.

 

“Be it resolved by the Senate of the ninety-third General Assembly of the State of Arkansas that the Senate recognize and celebrate the one-hundred-seventy-year history of Mount St. Mary Academy and the transformative power of faith and knowledge.” – portion of SR10

 

You may read the special resolution in its entirety at www.arkleg.state.ar.us/Bills/Detail?id=SR10.

Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.

OM team wins state tournament, will compete in World Finals

Congratulations to members of this year’s MSM Odyssey of the Mind (OM) team for placing first in their division at the virtual State Tournament on Saturday, April 10. The win earns the group a spot in the 2021 World Finals where it will compete against other qualifying teams from countries around the world.

 

This year’s team chose to solve the problem “OMER and the Beanstalk”, which challenged the students to create a mystical land inspired by selected fairy tales that a youngster character must journey through in order to learn a valuable lesson. They used unique materials like baking soda to create works of art relating to the stories represented. The team’s originality and problem-solving skills earned them high scores for their performance and in the Style and Spontaneous (improvisational) portions of the competition, and ultimately a combined score that topped the charts.

 

Mount St. Mary Academy has participated in the international creative problem-solving program promoting teamwork, STEM and the arts for more than 20 years. Since 1999, the MSM team has regularly been awarded first or second place in regional and state competitions. This marks the 10th straight year the school’s OM team has advanced to the World Finals. Last year’s team finished 13th overall in the final competition, which was held virtually for the first time due to COVID-19.

 

We wish these talented girls the best as they represent MSM and Arkansas on the international level at the upcoming World Finals: Josie Fitz ’21, Caroline Gunderman ’21, Isabel Jara ’22, Belle Mentgen ’23, Lucy Nimmo ’22, Mary Owen ’21, Clara Principe ’24, Macy Ramiro ’22 and Emily Van Ecko ’21. They are coached by Deborah Baldwin, Monica Madey ’06 and Ilia Bailey McNeal ’06.

 

Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.

MSM chemistry teacher wins Stephens Award

Dr. Marty Perry, a chemistry instructor at Mount St. Mary Academy, has been named a recipient of the 2021 Stephens Award by The City Education Trust. Dr. Perry is one of just six teachers in Little Rock selected to receive a $6,600 cash award recognizing his outstanding and inspirational teaching. Over the past six years, 10 MSM faculty members have earned this prestigious honor.

 

This is Dr. Perry’s second year at Mount St. Mary Academy, where he teaches chemistry classes including Honors Chemistry and AP Chemistry. An active member of the Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) Project, Dr. Perry actively engages his students in the learning process through collaborative teamwork using guided-inquiry materials. He believes they not only effectively learn content through this student-centered instructional approach, but they also develop skills valuable for lifelong learning.

 

“College admission committees and future employers routinely identify the most important student attributes as the ability to effectively communicate (oral and written), think critically, solve complex problems, collaborate with a team, process new information, and manage time and resources,” Dr. Perry stated in the essay that accompanied his award application. “Students in POGIL and other active learning settings intentionally work on the development of these skills every day in the classroom.”

 

In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Dr. Perry also coaches the Belles’ golf team and serves on the team of students, faculty and staff that is drafting Mount St. Mary Academy’s new Honor Code. He previously taught at St. Louis College of Pharmacy for three years and at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia for 18 years.

 

“I am honored to be recognized among all the other outstanding faculty we have at MSM,” Dr. Perry said. “It is a privilege to work in an environment that actively engages students in learning and is supported by colleagues and administration.”

 

Congratulations, Dr. Perry!

 

Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.