Mercersburg Academy


Mercersburg Academy—Unequivocally World-Class

Mercersburg Academy can easily claim the status of “world class education” on the basis of current student experiences and alumni success. Each year, 430 students, in grades 9 through 12, arrive from 40 nations and 30 US states to make themselves at home on the Mercersburg campus. Located 90 miles away from Washington, DC, the school’s 380 acres hold 40 buildings in a small historic borough in south-central Pennsylvania.

“We’re like a little world unto ourselves,” said Mercersburg Head of School Douglas Hale. With alumni holding awards as diverse as the Nobel Prize, Academy Awards, Emmys, and Rhodes Scholarships, this ‘little world’ can claim a remarkable global impact.

Competitive Admission

Last year, over 800 students applied for 150 student openings. This highly-competitive environment nurtures intellectually curious, talented, and motivated students from families who understand the value of education.

Students access the very best in academic college preparation, from AP classes to internships, and the ability to take specialized college courses in areas of particular interest. Students become proficient in second languages. Many pursue Ivy League educations, or choose “Little Ivies,” (highly-ranked liberal arts schools), or select public institutions.

“Our students are prepared to excel at any school in the country,” said Mr. Hale. “And our college counselors make sure our students find the best fit for their passions and their futures, wherever that may be.”


All Mercersburg students have iPads, and 25% of the teachers have written their own e-textbooks for the iPad. The school is known for cutting-edge programs in science, mathematics, and robotics. In a recent national robotics competition in New York, two Mercersburg student teams placed first, and two more placed second for construction, programming, and designing functionality.

Arts at Mercersburg

Mercersburg promotes the arts in its student population, advancing the confidence of self-expression and cultural appreciation. These art programs nurture ‘whole students,’ with remarkable graduates including Academy Award winners Jimmy Stewart and Benicio Del Toro.

An Olympic Sporting Launch

Athletics are a claim to fame for Mercersburg. Current students participate in all major sports, competing against other top-notch Mid-Atlantic institutions.

Mercersburg’s athletic record speaks for itself. There have been 54 Olympians, hailing from 15 different countries, who have competed in events from track and field to swimming, gymnastics, and wrestling.

A Strong Soccer Academy

This year’s soccer team placed third nationally among prep schools, with two São Paulo players on the team. “We can offer you strong soccer and strong academics,” said Soccer Head Coach Quentin McDowell. “But our priority will be academics.”

In fact, Mr. McDowell will be visiting São Paulo and Campinas in November to build community and reach out to potential future athlete-scholars.

Reaching out to Brazilian Students

“We enroll a couple of Brazilians every year, and we would love to reach out to more,” said Mr. Hale. “We find them to be warm, talented, and engaged young people who are a pleasure to have on campus.”


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