Founded and operated by the Daughters of Our lady of Mercy, Our Lady of Mercy Academy (OLMA) opened in September 1962 to 52 young women, embodying the first freshman and sophomore classes. The school’s first principal was Sister M. Dolores, and Sisters Gertrude, Dominica and Matthew Marie were the school’s first teachers.
The OLMA crest contains the school motto: “Knowledge and Truth.” The lamp symbolizes knowledge and the globe represents universal truth. The “M” represents the Blessed Mother. A cross, symbolizing Christian education, and the book of life are also present in the crest. The school’s colors are green and gold. Green stands for hope, new growth and enthusiasm, and gold stands for victory, success and becoming the best person possible.
In the spring of 1965, 23 young women departed OLMA as its first graduates. In June 1967, ground was broken for the construction of a new field house. the building was named Carew Hall in honor of Mother Bridget Carew, a founder of Our Lady of Mercy Academy. The next year, Carew Hall was used in the graduation ceremony of the Class of 1968.
Over the years, OLMA has expanded and enhanced its academic curriculum, athletics program, facilities, and more to meet the changing needs of our students. Today, we are growing by leaps and bounds and able to offer our students more unique opportunities than ever before to grow academically, spiritually and socially. We’re adding and upgrading the tools they need to do it as well.
Most recently, we added a brand new MAC Lab, upgraded our technology infrastructure, fully renovated our gymnasium/Carew Hall, upgraded our athletics training facilities, added new athletic fields, created an outside patio, and transformed our third floor porch into an inviting place for students and faculty to study, meet, relax and enjoy.
With an eye on developing tomorrow’s leaders today, OLMA recently created its L2T program. It’s focused on leadership, life skills and technology and begins with Bravery Training for freshmen. Bravery Training is designed to help students overcome their fears and insecurities in a safe and supportive environment. Students learn to set personal goals and develop strategies for achieving them. During the 2018-2019 school year, the program will expand to include public speaking, personal branding/digital literacy, STEM and Business 101, and Financial Literacy.
We are also firm believers in the power of experiential learning. In 2018, we launched our first-ever Mini-Mesters. During these week-long courses, students traveled to Canada, hiked the Grand Canyon, painted watercolor masterpieces, learned to sew, experienced the world of culinary arts, mastered the art of digital photography, danced their way down Broadway, took a step back into the history of Cape May, and were touched by the pure joy that comes from serving others.
The spirit of Sisterhood shared at OLMA remains constant. Once a young woman has entered through our doors, she becomes part of the Sisterhood. It begins on day one and never ends. We invite you to join us as we continue to make history. Together, we will change the world, one young woman at a time.