- Posted January 19, 2014 by
New York, NY, New York
This iReport is part of an assignment:
The written word: Your personal essays
Save Mother Cabrini High School!
My name is Barbara Prempeh, and I am a current senior at an all-girls school called Mother Cabrini High School (MCHS),located in the Washington Heights section of upper Manhattan. There aren't enough words for me to describe how this school has changed my life. In the eighth grade, I searched for a high school where I could continue my Catholic upbringing and came across Cabrini. I walked into the school as a freshman in September 2010 as a shy girl and yet the school welcomed me with open arms. I realized I had found my safe haven after witnessing the enthusiasm and passion of the girls there. It was the experience of a lifetime.
Through attending MCHS, I became independent and empowered. I attained many leadership skills through the various activities I joined here at Cabrini. Attending this school has given me the opportunity to explore what is truly out there for me and the real meaning of a sisterhood. My years at Cabrini have been filled with giving back to the less fortunate such as going on mission trips to New Orleans and forming strong bonds with my classmates through the many special traditions kept alive at Cabrini , and participating in marching parades as a drummer in the Drum Corps.
Did you know MCHS stands for something other than Mother Cabrini High School? The school focuses on a philosophy of expanding the Mind,Character, Heart and Soul. Each and every girl who walks through these doors are influenced by these ideas and philosophy. You may also be wondering what makes this place so special? The ambition, drive and discipline that is acquired here in this building can not be replaced. Most of my time is well spent in this building I call HOME. The time and dedication I have given to my school such as staying in the building from early morning to 6PM. The lessons that are taught at Cabrini can never go unnoticed.
Unfortunately, after 115 years of molding young girls to be powerful and strong women MCHS is looking to close its doors. On January 14, a letter was given to the whole student body to announce its closure at the end of the academic year. Although I am a senior, it still hurts to see that the underclassmen and future incoming students will not be able to enjoy the opportunities I was able to have. The number of tears that filled the eyes of not only me, but my classmates as well as teachers was tremendous. The school attributes its closure due to the economic downturn of the past years that include a decline in enrollment,managing the growing maintenance fees of the aging facility, unfunded scholarships and tuition assistance, and rising cost of insurance.
Mother Cabrini High School was founded in 1899 by the beloved St. Francis Xavier Cabrini,patron of immigrants. She founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart who currently own the school. She created a number of institution such as hospitals, schools as well as orphanages in places such as Chicago, Philadelphia,New York, New Orleans,etc. It is impossible for me to accept the fact the place which has created a bright future for so many young women is soon coming to an end. In order for the school to be saved, the sisters are saying that millions of dollars need to be raised to keep the doors open. The donations that will be raised will go towards saving the school first and should we be unable to succeed, it will still help the underclassmen with scholarships to transition them to other schools.
Current students, alumnae, parents, and the community are seeking help in order to save our school from shutting its doors. Your support and donation will truly help and provide a brighter future for many young girls. Please take the time out to help us and continue to change the lives of these aspiring young ladies. We have started a funding page and in 3 short days we have made close to $30,000 dollars. We have also created a social media campaign by creating a hashtag called the #cabrinimovement on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
If you would like to contribute to our cause please check out the link on our page
Our contact information is also provided on the page. Last but not least thank you for support and taking the time out to read this letter.
Sincerely, Barbara Prempeh (Class of 2014)