Author Archives: MSM C

Mount St. Mary Academy Senior Cameron H. Wants to Get Out the Vote

Why We Should Vote by Cameron H. ’19


Imagine one day waking up to the news reporting that female citizens of the United States were no longer allowed to vote. Imagine the reporter on the screen saying that only men were allowed to vote; that the only opinions the government wanted to hear was that of men. While this seems far stretched and outrageous, it used to be a reality. Voting is a right that is often taken for granted, but is also a right that was relentlessly fought for.


Women’s right to vote took seventy-two years to achieve. From the day of the Seneca Falls Convention until the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, suffragettes all around the country aided in the mission to have women’s voices heard and seen as equal to men’s. It was not a war won easily, however. Women were imprisoned and tortured because of what they were doing, yet more and more women were becoming willing to lay down their lives for this cause. They won this right for us, sacrificed their lives for this right for us. They won this right not only for themselves but all women who were born in the United States after them.


Today, women’s opinions are valued in our society. Women are not only around for childbearing. Women are recognized as strong, smart, leaders whose votes make a difference. Not only is there an easy form that you can fill out, but now when you get your driver’s license, there are convenient options to register to vote. After registering and when the time comes to cast a vote, people see the overwhelming options as intimidating. For this reason, there are websites that are made with the specific purpose of giving unbiased summaries of politicians or programs. Registering and the act of voting is being made as easy as it can be.


The government and state are not the only ones that are pressing citizens to vote. The Catholic church has identified three primary responsibilities of all citizens. These are to pay taxes, to defend their country, and to vote. The Church asks us to vote so that we can use our teachings and values to promote and defend the dignity of the human person, support the family and subsidiarity in local, state, and national institutions, work toward the common good where human rights are protected, and act in solidarity with concern for all as our brothers and sisters. Voting is actively protecting people’s rights and defending your values.


There are many reasons that could potentially fuel someone’s motivation to vote. It could be that they see it as honoring the suffragettes. It could be that they see it as a civic duty as a United States citizen. It could be that they are passionate about politics. It could be that they see their opinion as valuable and needed. It could even be a mixture of any of these. Whatever the your reasoning may be, like those who fought before you, you must be the change you wish to see in the world. Don’t be the one who silences your own voice.


Cameron distributed Voter Registration forms to all senior homerooms and encouraged her Mount sisters to get involved in the process.  Like Catherine McAuley, Cameron is passionate about making a difference in her community and the world.  Great job, Cameron!


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.


Mount St. Mary Congratulates Catholic High Homecoming Court!

Mount St. Mary Academy celebrated Monday, October 8th, with a football pep rally.


The Catholic High band performed during the pep rally and the 2018 Catholic High Homecoming Court was recognized.  Each young woman nominated for the Court was announced and presented with a bouquet of flowers.  After a rousing game of Family Feud (MSM vs. CHS) and several spirit performances, the Court was announced.


Front L to R:  Rockette representative Ashley H., Mary Chandler L., Hannah D., Ashley S., and Cheer representative Elizabeth C.
Back L to R:  Courtney F., Kennedy P., and Cameron K.


Come cheer on the Rockets as they play Fort Smith Southside on October 19th.  The Homecoming Court will be presented and the Homecoming Queen will be crowned.


Congratulations to the 2018 Catholic High School Homecoming Court!


Go Rockets! Go Belles!


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.

Mount St. Mary Academy’s Dads’ Club Topples Trees

Fifteen Mount St. Mary dads and ten other Mount supporters joined together Saturday, October 6th, to assist with the removal of two dead trees on campus.


A huge THANK YOU to all those who cut, split, and stacked wood that day.


Your support is invaluable to the school community and greatly appreciated.


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.

Mount St. Mary Celebrates the Forensic Team’s Sweepstakes Win!

The Forensics Team kicked off their 2018-19 season in Bentonville where more than 500 students competed in individual and group events. The MSM Forensics Team won 2nd Place small school overall Sweepstakes!  Our students also did well in their individual areas:

 

  • Lily E. & Anna F. won 3rd place in Duet Improvisation
  • Victoria V. was a Finalist in Informative Speaking
  • Holly M. and Lily E. were Finalists in Storytelling
  • America A. and Sophie M. were Semi-Finalists in Poetry
  • Amalie S. was a Semi-Finalist in Prose
  • Karina S. was a Semi-Finalist in Humorous Interpretation and Impromptu Speaking


The Forensics Class Reader’s Theatre won 2nd place.


Anna, Lily, America, Sophie, and Amalie earned bids to the State Championship in April.


We are very proud of the Forensics Team and their accomplishments.  Congratulations!


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.

Mount St. Mary Celebrates the Golf Team’s Drive

The Mount St. Mary Academy Golf Belles, coached by volunteer coach Brian Loeb, had a great season.



  Pictured from left to right: Emily E. ’19, Lily W. ’20, Isabel C. ’22, Lauren L. ’20, and Virginia Claire J. ’21 faced stiff competition at the State Tournament in Rogers.  At the end of play, Isabel C. ’22 was named All Conference.  Lauren L. ’20 was named All Conference and All State and qualifies for the High School Overall.



Congratulations Golf Belles and Best of Luck, Lauren!



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.

New Faces – Mount St. Mary Welcomes Director of Donor Giving

The Mount St. Mary Academy Vision Statement says:


 
Equipped with knowledge, our graduates leave with confidence, courage, motivation and drive.  Like Catherine McAuley, they are fierce pioneers, passionate about making a difference in their communities and the world.  


We are pleased to welcome home one of our graduates: Ms. Melissa Stiles ’89.  Melissa joins the Mount St. Mary Foundation staff as the Director of Donor Giving.  Like Catherine McAuley, she has been a fierce pioneer in her field (Development) and has been passionate about making a difference in the Little Rock community. 



She brings with her experiences as Senior Major Gifts Officer (CARTI Foundation), Senior Development Officer (Arkansas Children’s Hospital Foundation) and Development Director (Arkansas Community Foundation and Arkansas Symphony Orchestra).  She has also been active in the community, volunteering her time to areas that she is passionate about.



According to Melissa, “This is a wonderful opportunity to serve my alma mater just like it served me.”  Her goal is to grow and enhance the Foundation so “we can meet the needs of our school and her students.”  She plans to focus her efforts on fundraising opportunities that fulfill that mission. 



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.

 

New Faces, New Spaces – International Flavor and Travel

The International Language department at Mount St. Mary Academy experienced two major changes this summer: the addition of a new staff member and travelling downstairs to the first floor of the Flake wing!

 

(From left) Mrs. Ruth Pineda (Spanish instructor), Mrs. Marly Gammill ’05 (French instructor), and Mrs. Maureen Stover ’78 (Latin instructor) welcomed Mrs. Mercedes Rodriguez (Spanish instructor) to the International Language department.

 

Mrs. Rodriguez splits her time between Mount St. Mary Academy and UA Little Rock, where she is also a Spanish instructor.  Bienvenido, Senora Rodriguez!


As for travel, Gammill ’05 and Stover ’78 are actively involved in sponsoring our language trip (summer 2019) AND will be announcing the destination for the 2020 Europe trip Wednesday, October 10th.


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.

 

New Faces, New Spaces – Measuring Success

Measuring student success is an integral part of the Mount St. Mary Academy mission.  We are pleased to welcome two new math teachers to our staff this school year.  They join a department that is determined to enrich and enhance the math experience of each young woman at Mount St. Mary.


Mrs. Teresa Chudy (from left, second), Mrs. Oceanna McMahon ’00 (fourth), and Mr. Justin Brady (right) welcome Mrs. Bobbi Barret (left) and Ms. Amber Pruss ’07 (from left, third).


Barrett will focus on Geometry and Honors Geometry while Pruss will focus on Honors Algebra II and Algebra III.  Pruss also serves as the Freshman Volleyball Assistant Coach.


Also new to the department: two Promethean Boards.  These interactive boards are being utilized in Algebra, Honors Algebra, Pre-Calculus, Honors Pre-Calculus, AP Calculus AB, and AP Calculus BC.


McMahon and Brady were presenters at last week’s Catholic Schools of Arkansas Professional Day.  Their presentation, geared toward junior high teachers, was titled “Math + Collaboration = Future Success.”  We look forward to partnering with the schools in our community to build future success for our students!


 

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.

Mount St. Mary “Helps a Sister”

Www.sistersofmercy.org is the website for all things about the Sisters of Mercy and their mission. It is there we find “The Sisters of Mercy were founded out of a deep concern for persons who are poor. Today, that commitment is focused in five “critical concerns” that we address through attention to personal and institutional choices, advocacy with legislators and other government leaders, and corporate engagement.”

 

One of the critical concerns is Women and this year we are focusing on that particular concern. Part of our Mercy Day celebration was gathering items particularly used to “Help a Sister.” We brought in such items as toothpaste and toothbrushes, but also uniquely feminine items like nail polish/remover and tampons. All these items were delivered to Dorcas House.

 

“The Dorcas House reaches out to women and children of Central Arkansas with the compassion of Christ. Housing, classes, counseling, daily chapel time and our other services provided begin to help change lives. Those who are trapped in domestic violence or struggling with chemical dependency and other addictions find hope and support to break the shackles of their issues and begin to rebuild their lives through a relationship with Jesus Christ.” (http://urmissionlr.org/dorcas-house)

 

How perfect that we could partner with them in this event.

 

“Our love ought to be so firm, so cordial and so solid that we should never refuse to do or to suffer anything for the good of our Sisters.”

Catherine McAuley, Letter to Familiar Instructions, p. 106

 

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.

Mount St. Mary Academy Celebrates Mercy Day

By Brenna Stefanov and Emily Angyal


Mercy Day is a significant day for Mercy schools everywhere. September 24 is the anniversary of the opening of Catherine McAuley’s House of Mercy on Baggot Street in Dublin, Ireland.


Catherine McAuley, founder of the Sisters of Mercy and ultimately our school, devoted her life to the poor, sick and uneducated. In honor of her, we continue her legacy of caring and compassion in the name of Mercy through volunteering in our communities.


Freshmen volunteered in our school community by beautifying the grounds around the school and cleaning the gym. Sophomores started their yearly walk to Allsopp Park to volunteer in our immediate neighborhood community, but ended up making cards for senior citizens and patients at Arkansas Children’s Hospital due to rainy weather. Juniors and Seniors ventured further afield and helped in the greater community. They could be found cleaning walls at St. Edward’s, stuffing brochures at Camp Aldersgate, repairing and cleaning headstones at Calvary Cemetery, and so very much more. Over 500 students, faculty, and staff made a huge contribution to Little Rock.


Imagine that happening all around the world wherever there is a Sisters of Mercy presence. Catherine McAuley would be proud. The day culminated with the school community coming, rightly so, to the table of our Lord with the celebration of the Mass.


“Our charity is to be cordial. Now cordial signifies something that renews, invigorates and warms. Such should be the effect of our love for each other.”
Catherine McAuley
Letter to Cork Manuscript


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.

Mount St. Mary Academy Celebrates Professional Day

Mount St. Mary Academy faculty attended the Catholic Schools of Arkansas 82nd Professional Day Friday, September 28th.  We started our morning with Mass celebrated at Christ the King with Bishop Anthony Taylor, Monsignor Malone, Fr. Keith Higginbotham, other priests, and Catholic school faculty from around the state of Arkansas.  After Mass, the teachers listened to keynote speaker Sr. Patricia McCormack.


Sr. Pat, an Immaculate Heart of Mary Sister from Pennsylvania, travels around the country delivering presentations, workshops, retreats, and in-services.  Her message included the call to “Embrace our Vocation” and “Accentuate the Positive.”  Ms. Naeyaert “loved Sr. Pat’s energy and enthusiasm.  She was very engaging.”  “She was funny and that made all the difference,” said Mrs. Chudy.  Mr. Carden added, “She had a message for everybody!”


After lunch, several Mount teachers served as facilitators and presenters.  Mrs. McMahon and Mr. Brady presented a session for junior high math teachers titled “Math + Collaboration = Future Success.”  Mrs. Johnson, Ms. McLemore, and Dr. Hendrickson presented a session for 7th through 12th grade teachers called “What Literacy Looks Like in the Secondary Classroom.”  Mrs. Burch facilitated the Special Education/Resource/Title I session.


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.

New Faces – Class of ’22 Elects Officers

Mount St. Mary’s Class of ’22 held officer elections Monday, September 17th.  Joining the Student Council are (from left to right) Mimi B. (Freshman Class President), Annie W. (Freshman Class Officer), Sydney E. (Freshman Class Vice President), Dianna R. (Freshman Class Officer), and Lindsey D. (Freshman Class Officer).

 

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.

 

Mount St. Mary Academy Celebrates 1 National Merit Commended Student

The National Merit Scholarship Program recognizes students throughout the nation for exceptional academic promise. Approximately 34,000 Commended Students are recognized annually.

 

Mount St. Mary Academy is proud to recognize one student who has achieved the National Merit Commended Student status: Sophie B ’19.

 

Congratulations, Sophie. We are very proud of you!

 

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.

Mount St. Mary Academy Celebrates 2 National Merit Semifinalists

The National Merit Scholarship Program honors students who show exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies. Approximately 16,000 Semifinalists are recognized annually.


Mount St. Mary Academy is proud to recognize two students who have achieved the National Merit Semifinalist distinction in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship Program: Anna Kate Manchester ’19 and Bekka Ureta ’19.


Anna Kate and Bekka are among the 16,000 Semifinalists who represent the top one percent of the Class of 2019. Last fall, about 1.6 million juniors across the country entered the 2019 National Merit Scholarship competition by taking the PSAT qualifying test.


These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth about $32 million that will be offered next spring, according to a news release from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.


Congratulations,  Anna Kate and Bekka.  We are very proud of your accomplishments!


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.

 

Mount St. Mary Celebrates 2 Girls of Distinction

The goal of the Arkansas Women’s Hall of Fame is to honor, in perpetuity, women whose contributions have influenced the direction of Arkansas. As a part of the 2018 program, five Girls of Distinction were selected form area high schools. Two of the recipients were Mount St. Mary students: Annie Quo ’19 and America Alejandri ’20.

 

Annie is a senior at Mount St. Mary and is actively involved in many organizations, including National Honor Society and JROTC.  In the future, she hopes to work with Doctors Without Borders to help people access healthcare across the globe.

 

America is  junior at Mount.  She is in her third year serving on Student Council and is an active member of the National Beta Club and the National Thespian Society.  After graduation, she plans to pursue a career in Forensic Psychology.

 

Annie and America participated in the August 20, 2018, Arkansas Women’s Hall of Fame program.  This year’s inductees included the Women’s Foundation of Arkansas; Dr Carolyn F. Blakely, Lifelong Educator; Karen Flake, MSM President/CEO, Market Researcher and Public Servant; Dr. Sue Griffin, Alzheimer’s Research Pioneer; Dr. Raye Montague, Engineer; Dr. Bessie Grace Boehm Moore, Educator and Civic Leader; Florence Beatrice Smith Price, Composer; Mary Steehburgen, Academy Award-Winning Actress; and Annabelle Imber Tuck, Legal Trailblazer.

 

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.

New Faces, New Spaces – The Portico

One of our additions to campus this year is the recently-finished portico. Our fall 2017 Parent Satisfaction Survey cited Safety as one of our top concerns. In an effort to address that issue, the MSM Academy Board approved the building of the portico. Mount St. Mary Academy partnered with Nabholz to construct the new portico, a double door entry system. We appreciate the partnership and thank Nabholz for their generous contribution!


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.

New Faces – Welcome Class of ’22!

This year, Mount St. Mary Academy welcomed over 120 freshman girls from over 20 different schools.

 

At the opening mass on August 27th, the freshman walked with excitement through an honor guard made up of Campus Ministry, Ministers of Communion, and the Student Council. This honor guard symbolized the beginning of their four years at Mount St. Mary and the endless possibilities ahead of them. Over the next four years, these young women will be transformed. They will be challenged academically and encouraged to deepen their faith. Each MSM student receives support from her classmates, teachers and administrators as she grows into the woman God created her to be.

 

Mrs. Collins, MSM Principal, addressed the students, reminding them that the Mercy card is “not something to take lightly. It is a commitment. It is important. This card holds our value system in place for all the world to see. These values will help you grow as an individual and a member of our community. These values will help you live a grace-filled life. Our strength, as a community, lies in our shared Mercy Values.”

 

Mount St. Mary Academy is proud to welcome the Class of 2022!

 

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.

New Faces, New Spaces – Enhancing Learning

Mount St. Mary Academy’s Testing Center and Learning Strategies classroom have a new home in the Flake wing.  

 

The Testing Center in particular has taken on a new face.  Learners are greeted with twenty-four individual cubicles, each of which has a patron saint supporting the student.  Testing coordinator Julia Stevens has decorated each testing area with encouraging words, a prayer for success on the test, and a warm saint supporter.

 

Right next door, Learning Strategies Coordinator Cameryn Miller Burch ‘08 has created a classroom with an less-than-traditional seating pattern.  Students can work in regular desks or comfy chairs. The flexibility offered to students allows them to focus on learning in a less restrictive environment.

 

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.

New Faces, New Spaces – Growing the Faith

Mount St. Mary Academy has been blessed once again!

 

Fr. Keith Higginbotham joined the staff in August as Assistant Chaplain and teaches a Freshman Theology course.  He was ordained in May and originally hails from North Little Rock.

 

Fr. Keith joins Fr. Fred, our Chaplain and AP Physics instructor; Mrs. LouAnn Gieringer, our Campus Ministry Director; Mrs. Buff Easterly (senior Theology), Mrs. Lauren Ramsey Lawrence ’08, (junior, freshman Theology),  Mrs. Brenda Stevens (sophomore Theology), Mrs. Cheri Martinka (sophomore Theology), and Mrs. Sara Mader, (freshman, senior Theology).

 

 

 

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.

 

New Faces, New Spaces – MSM Counseling Program Grows

The Counseling program at Mount St. Mary Academy has grown this summer.  Amy Owens (standing), Counseling Director, along with Sr. Joan Pfauser (seated, left) and Sadie (seated, center), welcomed a new staff member in July.



Mrs. Emily Coffey (seated, right) has joined the Counseling staff and will concentrate her time on the College Application/Acceptance process.   She will assist Mount St. Mary students with the college application process by narrowing their college list down, work-shopping essays, answering application questions, writing letters of recommendation, and anything else the girls may need in regards to College!


Sister Joan Pfauser  will be focusing on the Freshman Experience.  As the Freshman Counselor, she will assist the ninth grade students as they transition to high school.  She will focus on academic, social, and emotional issues and work closely with the Freshmen teachers to ease any transition issues students may have.



Mrs. Amy Owens  will oversee the Counseling program and focus her time on academic, social, and emotional issues with sophomore, junior, and senior students.   She will continue to lead the Student Wellness Team and work with teachers and staff to monitor our students’ needs.



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.

Drain Smart

Mount St. Mary will be participating in Drain Smart again this year. Junior Art student Grace C.’s design “A Day in the Creek” has been selected for installation on the storm drain located at Kavanaugh and Ash in front of Hangers in Hillcrest. Art students will be painting the design as a group so keep your eyes peeled for us!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Concert Belles – State Festival Results

The Concert Belles were AMAZING at the State Festival April 6, 2017!  They received a Division I plaque and TWO best in class awards:  “best medium female chorus” AND “best medium chorus OVERALL” for the 6A division.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quiz Bowl Honors

The Mount St. Mary Quiz Bowl team competed in the state Quiz Bowl tournament on Saturday.  The team performed admirably. 

Katie S received All-State honors and she will be invited to play in the state All-Star tournament in May.

Seniors Win Art Competition

Congratulations to Erica V. and Isabella G. Both of the students’ artwork were selected as winners in the 2017 Governor’s Young Artist Competition, and will be displayed at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion, April 12 – May 13, 2017.

Teen Poet Wins 1st Place

Hannah B. won 1st place at the McMath Branch Library for her written poem, which she entered into the teen poet laureate contest.  She will be representing the McMath Library Branch at this year’s Arkansas Literary Festival, which is put on by the Central Arkansas Library System.  Her written poem will be competing against the written poetry winners from all of the branch libraries April 27th through 30th.  Congratulations, Hannah,  and good luck!