Morgan Park Academy’s graduating seniors had some very exciting options as they made their college decisions this spring.

The Class of 2021 earned $4.4 million in merit-based scholarship offers and gained admission at top national universities and liberal arts schools including:

  • University of Chicago
  • Northwestern University
  • Vanderbilt University
  • Washington University in St. Louis
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Southern California
  • Carnegie Mellon University
  • Howard University
  • Morehouse College
  • Spelman College

With scholarship awards still being counted, MPA students have earned an average of $120,000 in merit-based offers, including a four-year full ride at Northwestern, a full athletic scholarship, and merit awards at Washington University in St. Louis, Loyola University Chicago, DePaul University, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

“Morgan Park Academy students are able to find a great school that’s the right fit, because our small class sizes allow us to give students individualized attention through a four-year college counseling program,” Head of School Mercedes Z. Sheppard said.

“We couldn’t be prouder to see these institutions recognize the character, accomplishments, and future potential of MPA graduates.”


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MPA seniors plan to pursue careers as doctors, lawyers, entrepreneurs, teachers, engineers, artists, and much more, with intended majors including math, biology, physics, chemistry, computer engineering, animal sciences, political science, economics, sociology, business, elementary education, English, Spanish, film and media studies, studio art, fashion design, acting, and Slavic studies.

“I am so proud of the Class of 2021,” college counselor Tanuja Rathi said. “This has been a hugely difficult year for the college admission process, as for so many other things, and these students have risen to the occasion and surmounted every challenge put in front of them.”

In the past decade, MPA students have been accepted by 38 of the nation’s top 40 colleges and universities, as ranked by US News & World Report, despite a trend that has seen acceptance rates dip into the single digits at the most selective schools.

This group includes (in alphabetical order):

  • Boston College
  • Brown University
  • California Institute of Technology
  • Carnegie Mellon University
  • Columbia University
  • Cornell University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Duke University
  • Emory University
  • Georgetown University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • New York University
  • Northwestern University
  • Princeton University
  • Rice University
  • Stanford University
  • Tufts University
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of California, Davis
  • University of California, Irvine
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of California, San Diego
  • University of California, Santa Barbara
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Florida
  • University of Michigan
  • University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • University of Notre Dame
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Rochester
  • University of Southern California
  • University of Virginia
  • Vanderbilt University
  • Wake Forest University
  • Washington University in St. Louis
  • Yale University

Students in that time also have been admitted to two prestigious military academies and nearly all of US News’ top liberal arts schools and historically black colleges and universities:

  • Amherst College
  • Barnard College
  • Bates College
  • Bowdoin College
  • Carleton College
  • Claremont McKenna College
  • Colgate University
  • Davidson College
  • Grinnell College
  • Hamilton College
  • Hampton University
  • Haverford College
  • Howard University
  • Morehouse College
  • Pomona College
  • Smith College
  • Spelman College
  • Tuskegee University
  • United States Air Force Academy
  • United States Military Academy
  • Vassar College
  • Wellesley College
  • Williams College
  • Xavier University of Louisiana