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Mercyhurst Preparatory School

Mercyhurst Preparatory School

538 East Grandview Boulevard, Erie, PA 16504, USA

+1 814 824 2323



Mercyhurst Preparatory School
School type Coeducational Day
Founded 1926
Status Private
Principal Tom Rinke
Language of Instruction English
Co-ed Age Range 13-18
Number of pupils 478
Authorised IB Programmes IBDP
Diploma Coordinator Paul Cancilla
Associations IB


Mercyhurst Preparatory School (MPS) is a four year co-educational Catholic secondary school founded by the Sisters of Mercy to prepare students from all religious and ethnic backgrounds for a successful, productive, and compassionate life in an ever-changing and interdependent world. A Mercyhurst Prep education is based upon the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Mercy charism, and a modeling of Judeo Christian values. We strive for excellence in academic and co-curricular programs, promote service to our local and global communities, and foster the dedication and active support of the students, parents, faculty, staff, and alumni of the Mercyhurst community.


Mercyhurst Prep is located on the beautiful shores of Lake Erie in the USA where students experience seasonal change and access to numerous outdoor activities in this safe community of 200,000. Erie, Pennsylvania has easy access to major US cities - Cleveland, Buffalo and Pittsburgh - as well as Toronto, Canada.


As a college preparatory school, the curriculum is rigorous. 98% of graduates matriculate to post-secondary institutions. The school offers a wide range of courses at the college prep, honors, and International Baccalaureate (IB) levels. Implemented in 1985, the International Baccalaureate program is geared towards knowledgeable and caring students who are motivated to succeed in a well-rounded interdisciplinary curriculum, which leads to IB certificates or the IB diploma.

Students take eight courses in each of the school’s three terms. Our block schedule classes are ninety minutes long. We encourage every student to study at least one IB course.

STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math in the Classroom)

One-to-one iPad deployment provides a tremendous blending of cutting-edge classroom technology with best educational practice. MPS faculty receives extensive ongoing training in the use of iPads. Faculty and students are supported by a full-time technology expert and coach. iPad integration occurs across the curriculum.

Creative Arts

The school offers 49 courses in the performing and visual arts taught by a faculty of active award-winning artists. Students exhibit and perform year-round in the school's nationally recognized musical theater, dance and choral groups.

Collaboration with Mercyhurst University

Academically advanced students may begin college course work or pursue a subject in greater depth at Mercyhurst University. Some students may complete freshman year of college and senior year of high school simultaneously. The two schools are adjoined by a walkway, making each easily accessible to the other.

Athletics, Activities, and Clubs

A wide variety of extracurricular programs meets the interests of our students and helps them develop time management skills, hone their ability to prioritize, assume responsibility for learning and social events, and compete in ventures that highlight their talents. Athletic teams include football, soccer, tennis, golf, volleyball, basketball, swimming, softball, cheerleading, baseball, rowing, cross country and track. MPS teams regularly win district, regional and state titles with a program philosophy that emphasizes dedication, teamwork, and good sportsmanship.

Boarding Opportunities

While 85% of the students are day students, the school also serves international students from countries such as China, Vietnam, Taiwan, India, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, and Russia. A partnership with Pennsylvania International Academy (PIA) provides dormitory housing for international and American students who board full-time as well as weekdays. Visit piacademy.org for more information.

A small sampling of colleges attended by Mercyhurst Prep grads includes:

  • Alfred University
  • Boston College
  • Columbia University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Emerson College
  • Georgetown University
  • Harvard University
  • Ithaca College
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Sarah Lawrence College
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Notre Dame


60% of our faculty/administration hold postgraduate degrees. The student to faculty ratio is 11:1. Besides in-depth expertise in their specific fields, our faculty embody the Mercy charism, an attribute that makes them unique and exceedingly qualified to work with teens. Many teachers travel extensively during breaks and summer vacation, bringing an international mindset to instruction.

Admissions Policy

MPS admits students of any race, creed, color, or national origin without discrimination. When any student applies for admission, every effort is made to determine whether the school offers an educational program which will allow that student to develop intellectually, socially, spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

Recent Renovations:

Vorsheck Library and Research Center

Our newly transformed Library and Research Center enables our students to be miles ahead of the secondary standard in scholarly research and state-of-the-art technologies.

Hirt DREAM Labs


This innovative space facilitates creative endeavors with a combination of CADD (computer-aided design and drafting), 3-D design, and hands-on learning. We recently added "zSpace," an educational solution that creates the ultimate learning experience by combining Augmented Reality (AR) with Virtual Reality (VR). The DREAM Labs encourage technological experimentation, while supporting studies in English, graphics, robotics and self-directed learning across the curriculum.

Performing Arts Center (PAC)

Our newly renovated PAC boasts a cutting-edge flying system, acoustics, lighting, and climate control. These improvements will help prepare our students for the creative endeavors of a 21st century actor, dancer, vocalist, musician, lighting designer and technician.