During their six-day Appalachia Encounter Retreat, 24 seniors and four faculty members learned and served in eastern Tennessee in partnership with the Glenmary Home Missioners.
Prayer, Liturgy, & Sacramental Life
At McNicholas, we are rooted in our experience of God in our daily lives, and so prayer is at the center of all that we do as a community.
Our actions are shaped by the many opportunities to experience God’s love through prayer and reflection within the classroom setting as well as in the sacred space of our school’s chapel. Each school day begins and ends in prayer, and all members of the community share in the experience of prayer through communal worship at prayer services and within the celebration of Mass.
Friday Morning Mass and Prayer
Students, faculty, staff, parents, and alumni are welcome to gather for worship at Mass every Friday at 7 a.m. in our school’s chapel.
Prayer in the Chapel
In the midst of the busyness of life, students are always welcome to the sacred space of our school’s chapel for quiet reflection and prayer. Student study Bibles are on hand for the practice of Lectio Divina. On occasion, groups will meet for formal group prayer before school, during lunch, or after school.
We gather across the street at the sanctuary of Guardian Angels Parish for monthly masses and Holy Day celebrations. Students are encouraged to full and active participation in the liturgy as Eucharistic ministers, lectors, servers, and vocal and instrumental musicians.
McNicholas is excited to officially launch our Flight Program, an extension of the CREW program that was established in the fall of 2020.
We are pleased to welcome Mr. Bob Noll as the Principal of McNicholas High School. Mr. Noll officially begins his tenure at McNicholas on July 1, but he has already been hard at work learning about the McNicholas community and paving a smooth transition from Mr. Dave Mueller’s tenure to his. He describes the energy at McNicholas as “live-giving.”
Members of the Class of 2023 presented their social justice service-learning projects to a standing-room only audience during the 2023 Capstone Symposium. Using the Seven Themes of Catholic Social Teaching as inspiration, students researched and explored ways to use their God-given brilliance to actively love God and their neighbor.
McNicholas is proud of seniors Nate Kouche and Kaitlyn Schulte who were featured in the May issue of The Catholic Telegraph as “Teens Who Radiate Christ.”
All members of the McNicholas community are invited to the Capstone Symposium on April 27 at 7 p.m. to hear members of the Class of 2023 present their Social Justice Capstone Projects. Over the past year, members of the Class of 2023 worked collaboratively to discern and implement a passion projects aimed at making a difference in the lives of others.
During the annual Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce awards ceremony on March 22, senior Kelly Carville will be recognized as Student of the Year and faculty member Jeff Hutchinson-Smyth will be recognized as Educator of the Year.
Sr. Judi Keehnen ‘59 received a special blessing from Fr. Jan Schmidt ‘72 as her ministry in Cincinnati and at McNicholas draws to a close. Sr. Judi has been a part of the fabric of McNicholas High School since she entered McNicholas as a freshman in 1955. Since her graduation in 1959, she has served her alma mater as a teacher, coach, school board member, alumni board member, archivist, and volunteer.
As a member of the Executive Leadership Board for CancerFree KIDS Night for the Fight, senior Shelby Highfield is working to “knock out cancer.” Her heart and hard work as a member of the board helped CancerFree Kids to raise over $245,000 for cancer research. Seven teams of students from McNicholas participated in the event as well, contributing to that total.
More than 40 McNicholas students are skipping study hall for a good reason: They’re tutoring kids at Sands Montessori, Mt. Washington Elementary, and St. Joseph Catholic School. Through a program launched in the 2021-22 school year, our students provide reading enrichment at Sands, math and language arts support at Mt. Washington, and homework assistance at St. Joe’s.
Since becoming school Chaplain and Theology teacher in 2021, Fr. Kevin Scalf of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood has woven himself into the fabric of McNicholas through his wit, sense of humor and ability to make anyone he meets immediately feel valued.
McNicholas High School celebrated students achieving their academic best by inducting 31 new members into the Altiora Chapter of National Honor Society on Thursday, Dec. 1. The National Honor Society recognizes the achievements of junior and senior students who excel academically and fill leadership roles in the school and community.
McNicholas students donated, packed, and wrapped over 100 gift boxes to be shared with local teens through Hope Emergency. This is our ninth year partnering with Hope Emergency to help make Christmas brighter for our neighbors.
The Theology Department held their annual Heritage Week, a mini course for the freshman class highlighting the history, legacy, culture and vision of McNicholas High School. Students learned about our founders the Sisters of Saint Joseph, our namesake Archbishop John T. McNicholas, and the values and mission we continue to strive toward today.
McNicholas student organization Hands Across Campus (HAC) was honored for their compassionate leadership by the Intercommunity Justice and Peace Center (IJPC). At their annual gathering, IJPC awarded the first Youth Justice Award to HAC for their work to promote justice, diversity, and inclusion at McNicholas and in the community.
During a six-day service immersion retreat, 12 seniors visited eastern Tennessee to serve the rural poor and build a community both among themselves and with the people in the Appalachian Mountains. This marks the 41st year that McNicholas has traveled to areas in Appalachia in conjunction with Glenmary Home Missioners, a Catholic organization dedicated to serving the poor and establishing a Catholic presence in rural areas of the United States.
The McNicholas Mission & Ministry Team wants to remind and encourage students to walk with the two feet of love: charitable works and social justice. As the video "Two Feet of Love in Action" by the USCCB reminds us, “God gave us two feet. If we don’t use both, we don’t get very far.” As such, McNicholas expects students to walk with both feet during their four years as Rockets, requiring at least 40 hours of Christian service prior to graduation.
McNicholas welcomed 5 students from Collegi Casp, a sister school in Barcelona, Spain, for a 3-week study abroad program. During their stay, Ariadna, Ana, Andrea, Biel, and Abel lived with McNicholas host families, explored Cincinnati, and experienced life as a Rocket. They participated in clubs, cheered from the Launch Pad, attended a full class schedule, and even helped in our Spanish classes.
McNicholas is excited to unveil Leadership McNick, its newest initiative in the development of compassionate leaders. Leadership McNick is a four-year, intentional growth experience that combines high-quality leadership training with small-group relationship building, retreat programming, vocation and career exploration, and formal and informal mentoring.
Partnering with Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, members of the RLC collected and packed hygiene kits to send to Manna from Heaven Outreach, a group working to support the people of Eastern Kentucky who were devastated by the recent flooding. With a focus on Community, Curiosity, and Creativity, the RLC provides students with the opportunity to learn through community engagement.
McNicholas is proud of and grateful for theology teachers Mrs. Mary Beth Sandmann and Mr. Jeff Hutchinson-Smyth who were featured in the August issue of The Catholic Telegraph as “Role Models of Faith.”
Students in Mrs. Kendra Lonneman’s personal finance classes learned about the importance of philanthropy and supported pediatric cancer research by participating in the Magnified Giving program.
The senior St. Joseph Scholars highlighted the ways they have grown in compassionate leadership as they presented their Social Justice Capstone Projects.
The Class of 2025 grew in compassionate leadership this week as they bonded together during leadership formation. This day of formation laid the groundwork for the Leadership McNick program, a joint venture between McNicholas and the Xavier University Leadership Center (XLC), that will officially kick off next school year.
As part of the Guardian Angels School’s CANabilities Program, McNicholas hosted the eighth grade class from GA, leading them through a morning of witness, reflection, and activities fostering kindness and compassion.
Around McNicholas, you will often hear the phrase, “Once a Rocket, Always a Rocket.” So when one of your own is about to play on football’s biggest stage, we don’t just cheer (though we’ve been doing a lot of that!). We act. To support 2004 McNicholas graduate Kevin Huber, senior Grant Must designed and marketed a “Rockets show their stripes” t-shirt whose proceeds benefit Huber’s FUR Foundation.
Rockets grew in compassionate leadership today thanks to Hands Across Campus (HAC), our inclusion and diversity student organization, who organized an assembly whose topic was autism and theme was “Show me my neighbor.”
St. Joseph Scholars spent the day serving and learning at the Cincinnati Recycling and Reuse Hub. Scholars sorted recyclables, “shopped” for reusable items, and learned about ways that they can be more sustainable in their daily lives.
McNicholas is excited to announce that we are adopting a President/Principal model of school administration to meet the school’s continued growth in its academic, spiritual, and community initiatives.
During October, McNicholas Rockets for Life challenged our community to reflect more deeply on the dignity of every human life through prayer, a Pro-Life Poster Contest, a Cup-Cake Day, a clothing drive benefiting A Caring Place, the annual Evening for Life, and more.
Over the past month, Hands Across Campus (HAC) has led our community in the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, a time dedicated to recognizing influential Hispanic Americans and their positive impact on society.
McNicholas is excited to welcome Father Kevin Scalf of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood as School Chaplain and Theology Teacher.
After 45 years of service, Mr. John Norman taught his last class at McNicholas High School and exited the school building amidst the cheering of students and staff.
Congratulations to freshman artist Lucy Timko whose artwork was selected as one of twelve designs for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati Bicentennial Holy Cards.
Senior Bella Dawson received the Spirit of Sr. Dorothy Stang Award for exemplifying Sr. Dorothy’s values, including outreach to others and care for creation.
Morgan Vogler, Class of 2017, speaks to faculty and students about taking steps toward sustainable living.
The McNicholas St. Vincent de Paul Youth Conference helps members grow in compassionate leadership through service learning.
McNicholas celebrates its 125th Kairos retreat.
Students team up with CancerFree KIDS to fundraise for and spread awareness about childhood cancer. Rockets raised over $15,000.
Rockets celebrate Martin Luther King Day by participating in a service learning opportunity through the Society of St. Vincent de Paul's Ozanam Center.