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Waldron Mercy Academy: Fostering a Foundation of Service

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Waldron Mercy Academy
Waldron Mercy Academy Courtesy of Waldron Mercy Academy

Nestled within the vibrant community of Merion Station, stands a beacon of compassion and service—Waldron Mercy Academy. Steeped in the tradition of Mercy, this preschool through 8th grade Catholic, independent school transcends the conventional boundaries of learning, by instilling in its students a profound sense of social responsibility and a commitment to outreach that resonates far beyond the classroom.

At Waldron Mercy, service is not just an extracurricular activity: it is a way of life. Tracey Hagan, current parent of Sean (class of ‘26) and Mallory (class of ‘28), and Chair of the Parents Association Mercy Outreach committee, encapsulates the essence of this ethos, remarking, “Service lies at the core of our mission. It’s about nurturing empathy and empowering our students to be agents of positive change in the world.”

Courtesy of Waldron Mercy Academy

Indeed, the spirit of service permeates every facet of Waldron Mercy’s culture, from its comprehensive curriculum to its myriad of extracurricular and in-school initiatives, to the Core Values that are a hallmark of a Mercy Education: Compelled by Mercy, Educational Courage, Inspired by Faith, Principled Leadership, and A Voice for Dignity & Respect. 

Moreover, service is not just a one-way street at Waldron Mercy—it is a reciprocal relationship that enriches both the giver and the receiver. Through service-learning projects integrated into the curriculum, students not only contribute to their community but also gain invaluable insights and skills that shape their personal and academic growth.

“Service learning allows our students to apply classroom knowledge to real-world contexts,” notes Mary Fresta, 7th and 8th grade Religion teacher, and parent of Annelise class of ‘19. “It cultivates critical thinking, empathy, and a deeper understanding of social issues, ultimately preparing our students to be conscientious leaders and changemakers in society. It is my goal as a teacher at WMA to instill the Mercy mindset of service in each of my students every year.”

One of the hallmark initiatives of Waldron Mercy’s commitment to service is its partnership with local shelters and food banks. Throughout the academic year, students eagerly participate in food drives, clothing donations, and volunteer outings to soup kitchens—embodying the Mercy tradition of serving those in need.

Courtesy of Waldron Mercy Academy

“We want our students to recognize their capacity to affect change, both locally and globally,” asserts Hagan. “By fostering a culture of service and empathy, Waldron Mercy empowers young minds to become compassionate leaders in an ever-changing world.”

Sister Barbara MacWilliams, a sister of Mercy and Reading Enrichment Teacher at WMA, adds that “Waldron Mercy Academy provides our students with a rich understanding of Jesus’ call to reach out and to care for their brothers and sisters, and we pray that our school community will use their Mercy Mindset to make a difference in the world.”

As Waldron Mercy continues to uphold its legacy of service and community outreach, it remains a shining example of the transformative power of education. In a world plagued by division and inequality, Waldron Mercy stands as a beacon of hope and testament to the enduring values of compassion, empathy, and solidarity.

In the words of Tracey Hagan, “Service is not just something we do; it’s who we are. And at Waldron Mercy Academy, we are committed to shaping a brighter, more compassionate future— one act of service at a time.”

For more information on Waldron Mercy Academy please visit