Awards & Highlights 2014 - 2015

Honors Convocation

Scholarship. Leadership. Service. Character. Excellence. The entire Mercy school community convened on May 26tg for the annual HONORS CONVOCATION to recognize all the stellar students of 2015. From math and science, service and scholarships, Newsprint and Lore yearbook, all were honored for their awesome achievements and a standing ovation to the seniors for a fabulous four years. Visit these links to see the full list of student awards: grades 9 - 11 and grade 12

Sr. Emily George Award ~ Nicole Di Ponio
Principal's Leadership Award ~ Taylor Babcock
Garn Griffin Athletics Award ~ Jenna Lerg and Alexandria Sobczak
Salutatorians ~ Rachel Belans and Molly Murphy
Valedictorian ~ Emily Crowley
Teacher of the Year ~ Mrs. Cindy Richter



Congratulations to Social Studies Teacher Mrs. Cindy Richter on being named the Mercy High School 2015 Teacher of the Year. She is a dedicated, faith filled, compassionate teacher who is an advocate for teens. Here is what some students had to say about Mrs. Richter: "She is both genuine and compassionate. She sets high standards and helps each one of us achieve them. She is very passionate about learning and requires us to speak up, and realize that our opinions matter."

Yearbook MIPA Awards - At the recent Michigan Interscholastic Press Associate spring conference, the 2014 yearbook staff was recognized in several yearbook categories:

Personality Profile - honorable mention, Elyse Baron
Personality Profile - honorable mention, Christine Edwards
Sidebar Coverage - honorable mention, Kelly Langan
Student Life Spread - honorable mention, Kelly Langan
People Spread - 2nd place, Lore staff
Graphics - 2nd place, Patti Wallace
Theme Development - honorable mention, Lore staff
Cover - honorable mention, Lore staff
Index - 3rd place, Lore staff
Newsprint Awards - Newsprint was awarded the Spartan Award, which is the top award a high school newspaper can receive from the Michigan Interscholastic Press Association, otherwise known as (MIPA). In addition, the paper's website,, achieved the Gold Award and 16 members of the Newsprint staff won a total of 34 individual awards from MIPA in various writing and design categories


2015-2016 Athletic InformationCongratulations to two more senior athletes who signed scholarships to play a sport in college: Kayley Beauregard – Ice Hockey, UMASS; Samantha Dickie – Swimming, Northern Michigan University.

Image Is 2015 - Compilation of Poetry & Art

Congratulations to the three Mercy students that were elected to the State Board of the Michigan Junior Classical League! Katherine Colleran ’17 (Historian), Phil Engel ’16 (President), and Ellie Janitz ’17 (TAEDA Editor)

Theresa Walle '15 was one of five prize winners for the 21st Annual Madrigal Chorale Vocal Scholarship after competing in the final round concert at St. Paul's United Methodist Church in Rochester. She will use the scholarship money to attend Westminster Choir College's Summer Solo Vocal Artist Program. She also received an Excellent at Michigan School Vocal Music Association State Solo and Ensemble.

Michigan Youth Arts Festival Creative Writing Contest - Congratulations to these students who have been named "Student Scholars" because of their fine work submitted to the Michigan Youth Arts Festival Creative Writing Contest: Amy Vlachos; Alexis Verderbar; Julia Kirby; Maddie George and Marie Camp. The high quality of these poems has earned these girls attendance at the Festival to be held early in May at Western University.

Optimist Leadership Award - Katie Birecki '16 won the Farmington/Farmington Hills Optimist Leadership Award. This award recognizes a junior from each of the 5 area high schools who has demonstrated leadership skills and human relationship development. She serves as an iWizard leader and recently was among five co-editors who published a collection to iTunes called iPad Tips and Tricks. Katie is incredibly intelligent, sincere and generous with her time and sets the very best example for other students.

2015 National Honor Society Inductees

Heart of Mercy

If the love of God really reigns in your heart, it will quickly show itself in the exterior. ~ The Venerable Catherine McAuley

Mercy High School rejoices for 2015 Heart of Mercy Award recipients Ms. Fran Mika, Kailey Savona '15 and Mr. Jim Skellett who live out the values of Human Dignity, Service, Justice, Mercy, and Option for the Poor. Thank you for being faithful and compassionate people of God who make a difference to everyone in our Mercy family.

Here is just some of what students had to say about these inspirational school leaders: "Ms. Mika is

a 21st century example of Catherine McAuley’s legacy. She is an excellent teacher, role model and treats everyone with dignity. She lifts me up and shows me how important I am." "Kailey only has nice things to say about everyone. She is encouraging and treats everyone with importance. She picks people up when they are down. Kailey keeps the Heart of Mercy beating." "Mr. Skellett's door is always open and he is a good listener. He will always go out of his way to help someone in need. He is visible proof of God's love and compassion."

Class of 2015 Valedictorian and Salutatorians

CONGRATULATIONS to Valedictorian Emily Crowley and Salutatorians Rachel Belans and Molly Murphy who will take the stage to speak at graduation. This distinction considers not only academic record but also leadership, service, and extracurricular involvement. Staff and the senior class provided valuable input and each candidate responded to a series of questions and was interviewed by members of Administration. The Mercy Administrative Team will be holding a Catherine McAuley Tea celebration in honor of all the finalists on April 30.

Hats off to the following seniors who were selected as Valedictorian and Salutatorian Finalists: Amanda Allessio, Mariam Aoun, Taylor Babcock, Gabrielle Barthel, Mackenzie Cahill, Madeline George, Megan Haase, Sarah Hughes, Mikayla Kempf, Claire Lachner, Jenna Lerg, Hannah Madill, Megan Makarewicz, Emily Mallon, Julia McAree, Jordyn Puccio, Alexandria Sobczak, Julia Swoish, Rachel Wagner, Jacqueline Welday, Jessica Williams, Danya Ziazadeh, Mackenzie Zierau.

Mercy Marlins Ice Hockey Team are Division 2 STATE CHAMPIONS! Read all about it here and thank them for the day off on April 13, 2015.

National Scholastic Art Award Winners

Congratulations to senior art students, Jaya Jankowski and Hannah McInnis, and their teacher, Ms. Susan Smith, who received national recognition in the 2015 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards competition. Jaya won a national gold medal for her photograph titled, “Reflection” and Hannah received a silver medal for her photograph titled, “Longing for Love." These students have been identified by panels of creative professionals as the most talented young artists and writers in the nation. This year, 300,000 works of art and writing were submitted. Only the top 1% were recognized at the national level. The National Exhibition will be open from June 5 – 14 at the Sheila C. Design Center at Parsons The New School for Design and at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery in New York. Jaya and Hannah have also been invited to attend a ceremony at the world-famous Carnegie Hall on Thursday, June 11.

Farmington Area Arts Commission High School Contest

Rita Erickson Jackie Golias

More congratulations to the following Mercy students who won awards in the 2015 High School Art Competition sponsored by the Farmington Area Arts Commission.

Photography Category

1st Place - $100 – Jaya Jankowski - Hidden

2nd Place - $75 – Rita Erickson – Head On

3rd Place - $50 - Hannah McInnis – Longing For Love

Honorable Mention - $25 – Jackie Golias - Reflection

2-D Category

2nd Place - $75 – Jinghan (Molane) Hu – Blair

3rd Place - $50 – Miranda Stano – Perception

3-D Category

2nd Place - $75 – Sydney Akin – Glazed Stoneware Coil Construction

3rd Place - $50 – Miranda Stano – Glazed Stoneware Slab Construction

Winning artworks will be displayed in a special exhibition at the Festival of the Arts (April 16th – 18th) and will remain at the City Gallery through May 15th. Awards will be presented on Friday, April 17th, at the Costick Center, beginning at 6:00 PM. Winners (or a representative) are required to be present to receive awards. Their families, friends, teachers and administrators are invited to attend the award ceremony. Ticket are $5 each. Awardees will be given one ticket, plus one guest ticket.

Scholastic Art Awards 2015

Congratulations to the 10 students from Mercy’s Art Department who won 17 awards in this year’s Regional Scholastic Art Awards competition.

By Hannah McInnis By Miranda Stano



By Jaya Jankowski By Darby Horne  

Special congratulations to Jackie Golias and Jaya Jankowski. Their portfolios made finalist status and will compete in New York City for talent scholarships. Jaya Jankowski, Hannah McInnis, and Miranda Stano also won five gold keys (first place) in the individual photography, drawing and ceramics contests. Their pieces will also compete in New York for national awards.

The College for Creative Studies sponsors the Southeastern Michigan Art Region, which, this year, received over 6200 individual entries and 250 senior portfolios from students in Lenawee, Livingston, Monroe, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne Counties. This year was even more competitive since the Scholastic Art region received 700 more entries than last year. Jurors selected 300 Gold Keys, 375 Silver Keys and 426 Honorable Mentions. 83 Gold Key Portfolios were selected from 250 submitted, seven were selected “Best of Show” and five Gold Key works were selected as American Vision Nominees. All Gold Key work will be judged at the national level in March. The national ceremony will be on Thursday, June 11 at Carnegie Hall and will also be live-streamed for students and teachers who are unable to attend.

Regional winning entries will be on display in the exhibit at the College for Creative Studies, Walter B. Ford II Building from Tuesday, February 10 – Friday, March 6. Hours: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm Monday – Friday, noon – 5:00 pm Saturday and Sunday. The regional ceremony for Oakland County Private schools will be held on Wednesday, February 11, 2015, at 7:00 p.m. in the Detroit Film Theater of the Detroit Institute of Arts. To see a list of all winners, click here: Lists of winners.

Student Grade Entry Award
Rita Erickson 12 Digital Art Honorable Mention
Jacqueline Golias 12 Art Portfolio Gold Key
Darby Horne 12 Mixed Media Silver Key
Jinghan Hu 11 Painting Honorable Mention
Jaya Jankowski 12 Art Portfolio Gold Key
    Photography 2 Gold Keys, Honorable Mention
    Fashion Silver Key
    Jewelry Honorable Mention
Hannah McInnis 12 Photography Gold Key, Silver Key
Caitlin Ryan 10 Painting Honorable Mention
Catherine Sawicky 10 Painting Honorable Mention
Alaina Skellet 10 Fashion Honorable Mention
Miranda Stano 11 Drawing and Illustration Gold Key
    Ceramics and Glass Gold Key

Way to go, Sammy!  Sammy Kleedtke was the first girl in the 2017 graduating class to commit to the University of Wisconsin-Madison to play soccer. Even though she is just a sophomore, she has already had many offers to play at Big 10 schools. Read all about her amazing soccer accomplishments here!

New Robotics Team Making Headlines

Mercy's first Robotics Team the Riveters prepares for their first competition. Read all about it here.

Make a Difference Day!

Staff and students volunteer at various organizations.

As part of Mercy High School Spirit Week, the entire Mercy school went into the community to do service on Tuesday, September 24th. Imagine what an impact 900 people doing three hours of service can do! Students and staff will travel by bus to the following organizations and work in groups from 9:30am to 12:30pm performing a variety of service tasks to help where needed.

Angel's Place (2 locations) Farmington Hills, Southfield
Another Way Pregnancy Center - Farmington Hills
Arts and Scraps - Detroit
Cadillac Gardens - Detroit
Cass Community Social Services - Detroit
Central Detroit Christian - Detroit
Chaldean Ladies of Charity - Troy
Clark Park Coalition - Detroit
Focus Hope - Detroit
Food Gatherers - Ann Arbor
Forgotten Harvest - Detroit
Gesu Catholic School - Detroit
Gleaner's - Detroit
Great Lakes Alliance/Clean Water - Detroit
Marianhill Retreat Center - Dearborn Heights
Motor City Blight Busters - Detroit
Schulze Elementary School - Detroit
St. Joe's Farm - Ann Arbor
St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center - Detroit
The Greening of Detroit - Detroit
Vista Maria - Dearborn HeightsMercy High President Dr. Cheryl Kreger ’66 says, "Last year, everyone's spirits were lifted after serving in so many different ways on this special day. We, as a school, are again looking forward to working for excellent causes with energy, purpose and joyful hearts. We stand for Mercy and Service and educate women who make a difference."

Youth Mercy Associates

After one year of orientation and preparation, we are proud to welcome 10 New Members of the Youth Mercy Associate-USA Program. We also accepted the recommitment of 10 of our Charter Members.

Newly Commissioned Members are: Nicole Belans, Rochelle Chezick, Katherine Colleran, Claire Johnston, Bridget Kenney, Bridget Lyons, Molly Lyons, Peyton Pawlusiak, Kailey Savona and Josephine Wenson.

Charter Members Re-commissioned are: Lauren Battle, Rachel Belans, Madison Flyte, Meaghan Fortney, Lizzie Lilley, Molly Murphy, Alexis Ponder, Amy Vlachos, and Theresa Walle.

College Bound Athletes

Congratulations to these Mercy High School senior athletes who committed to play a sport in college!

Back row, left to right: Michaela Bargardi - Swimming, Cleveland State University; Erica Heath - Golf, University of Detroit Mercy; Analise Sala - Soccer, Hope College: Claire Lachner - Ice Hockey, Quinnipiac University; Alexandra Sobczak  - Softball, University of Michigan; Taylor Jones - Basketball, Oakland University; Allysen Eads - Cross Country, Hillsdale College

Middle row, left to right: Kathleen McGee - Swimming, Michigan State University; Roxy Griffore - Swimming; Purdue; Molly Murphy - Softball, Emory University Georgia; Brooke Ottaway - Lacrosse, Rollins College; Taylor Babcock - Soccer, University of Portland Oregon

Front row, left to right: Madeline Loniewski - Swimming, Georgetown University; Christine Clayton - Volleyball, Beloit College; Jordan Johnson - Softball, Adrian College; Monica Shuk - Volleyball, Albion College; Marge Terhune - Soccer, St. Lawrence University; Jenna Lerg - Volleyball, University of Michigan; Alexandra Griffin - Soccer, Western Illinois University

POWERFUL POETS -Congratulations to the following students whose poetry has been accepted for publication by Creative Communications writing contest: Hannah Hembree; Kaitlin Johnstone; Jensen Pecora; Tiv Phull; Katelyn Sullivan; Haley Schultz. More congratulations to the many juniors and seniors whose creative efforts have qualified them for inclusion in the annual Anthology of Poetry: Taylor Babcock; Kathryn Dunleavy; Ihechi Ezunionye; Taylor Gibney; Megan Haase; Julia Kirby; Amelia Kravutske; Maddy Loniewski; Jensen Pecora; Maria Pulice; Cleopatra Weeks; Logan Wilczewski; Alexis Verderbar; Morando Yaldo; Julianna Ruggirello; Amy Vlacos; Sierra Wangler; Tiv Phull.

POM PERFORMERS! Some of the Mercy Varsity Pompon team members performed at the Citrus Bowl on New Years Day. The students who went on this trip are part of Mid American Pompon's ALL-STAR TEAM: Stephanie Hosko, Natalie Forster, Addie Powell, Alex Powell, Sarah Turner, Kaitlyn Yaldo, and Mikayla Kempf.

State Solo and Ensemble - Bravo to the following students who achieved stellar ratings and will be advancing to the State Solo and Ensemble Festival in March! Kathryn Wolf received a division I on her violin solo. Katie Schubert, Elise Scarchilli and Lydia Gier received a division I on their flute and clarinet trio. Kaela Brown, Elise Scarchilli, Lydia Gier, and Samantha Schubert received a division I on their flute quartet.

Let's Hear it for the STAFF!

English Teacher Mrs. Jan Mordenski was named as a Poet of Recognition by The Poetry Foundation. The Poetry Foundation is "an independent literary organization committed to the presence of Poetry in American culture." Aside from publishing POETRY magazine, they host readings, help promote writers and their works, and serve as a clearing house for all things having to do with poetry in our country. Their website is a wonderful resource for students and teachers, for anyone looking for a certain poet, a certain poem, a certain critical article regarding poetry, or even someone who just wants to browse for some topical or occasional poems such as "Love" or "Thanksgiving." Being listed with them is an honor for Ms. Mordenski because it not only denotes that she has a substantial body of published work, but that she has attained "national" status as an active American poet. Currently, the website features her poem, "Crochet" which was originally published in the literary journal, Plainsong.

Congratulations to Mercy Golf Coach Mrs. Vicky Kowalski for being named the Observer & Eccentric Girls Golf COACH OF THE YEAR!

Mercy Ski Coach Mr. Tom Gable was inducted into the Michigan High School Ski Coaches Hall of Fame.

Hannah Madill '14 on WDIV "Live in the D"! Hannah Madill was diagnosed in February of this year as a Type 1 diabetic. She has since become deeply involved in the JDRF (formerly known as Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) community. Since her diagnosis Hannah has participated in the Today and Tomorrow Conference (where she met and formed a friendship with Nicole Johnson, Miss America 1999, T1D), she has become an active member of the JDRF Youth Council and formed a team for the JDRF Walk held in September. She has created her own website thru JDRF, wrote many personal letters asking for support, sold JDRF awareness bracelets and raised thousands of dollars. Fellow Mercy classmates, Mercy Alumnae and staff have joined Hannah's team in support and in effort to cure this horrible disease. Hannah appeared on the WDIV segment "Live in the D" and talked about the importance of the work JDRF does. JDRF recommended Hannah to be their representative on the show and helped explain the importance JDRF and its impact on her life. View the segment on WDIV here.

Ellyse Conn, Emily Dulzo and Mikayla Kempf were chosen to be members of the Catholic Central Homecoming Court.

Congratulations to these stellar students who received the Archdiocese of Detroit Scholastic All Catholic Award:

Seniors Juniors Sophomores
  • Gabrielle Barthel
  • Rachel Belans
  • Emily Crowley
  • Olivia Drukker
  • Megan Haase
  • Sarah Hughes
  • Claire Lachner
  • Megan Makarewicz
  • Molly Murphy
  • Mackenzie Zierau
  • Cydney Ayad
  • Theresa Benton
  • Carly Camp
  • Natalie Cieslak
  • Jinghan (Molane) Hu
  • Erin Judd
  • Taylor Lombard
  • Sabrina Yancey
  • Nicole Belans
  • Mallory Demeter
  • Hannah Hamilton
  • Madeleine Jones
  • Samantha Kleedtke
  • Jordyn Kreucher
  • Sarah Kurpiers
  • Brooklyn Rue
  • Hanaa Saleh
  • Samantha Schubert
  • Katelynn Smith
  • Alissa Sweeney
  • Danielle Thomas
  • Sydney Van Acker
  • Jillian Yassay

Congratulations to Emma Feeheley '16 who was crowned Miss Farmington 2014! Read all about it here.

Front Page News! Alycia Washington '15 worked as an apprentice this summer at the Detroit Free Press. Among the many stories she wrote or co-wrote, one in particular stood out and ran on the front page of the Detroit Free Press and was also published in USA Today and about 10 other Gannett newspapers nationwide. It is about an effort through the Catholic church youth group to help homeless people in Detroit. Check it out here.