Founded by the Sisters of Mercy of Detroit in 1992 to provide tutoring for economically disadvantaged girls in southwest Detroit, Mercy Education Project (MEP) today offers a spectrum of programs to serve the basic educational needs of at-risk women and girls in southwest Detroit, one of Detroit’s poorest areas.
Almost 25 years ago, Mercy Education Project began as a tutoring and summer program for 14 girls. By the following year, GED classes for women were added. Witnessing a considerable need for remedial education for Detroit women who had dropped out of school, MEP added adult basic education and adult literacy components. With a growing number of GED graduates looking for additional career services, we expanded the career development program and added job training programs between 2004 and 2007.
In 2009, MEP started the Emerging Leaders summer program for middle school girls. With a focus on creating a college and career knowing culture, Emerging Leaders helps girls – and their families – who have had little exposure to higher education see its benefits and prepare for its possibilities.
In 2012, computer literacy instruction was integrated into the adult education services and ACT/SAT preparation was added for high school youth. In 2013, a Spring Break College Camp was initiated as an intensive one week program immersing 11th and 12th graders is college prep.
Mercy Education Project continues to receive some support from the Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community in addition to individuals, corporations, foundations, and other private and public entities.
Once a very small tutoring project, Mercy Education Project now helps approximately 250 girls and women in Detroit each year to succeed in education and move toward self-sufficiency.