I am an alumna from the 2000s, and while my experience at Marian was positive overall, upon reflection, I have mixed feelings about how Marian prepared me to be a critically-thinking citizen outside the bubble of the school and Catholic community.
If you want your daughter to have a good, easy, and morally tidy life; to apply to in-state colleges where she will do just fine; and to stay in the Birmingham area and raise a nuclear family in the Catholic church, Marian is a good option.
This is not meant to be snarky, but it’s honest -- albeit a little hyperbolic.
Marian is not an environment that encourages divergent thinking, dissenting opinions, soul searching, creativity, experimentation, or generally going outside one’s comfort zone in any way. It is a safe school. Graduates are sure to succeed academically, but Marian does not challenge students in any deep intellectual way.
It wasn’t until I attended a liberal, Ivy League school (Marian actively dissuaded me from applying to it in favor of “safe” local options like Adrian and Alma) that I truly began to feel the limitations of Marian’s education. Paradoxically, I was such a well-trained, good little student at Marian that I couldn’t think creatively once I left. I had to retrain myself -- and give myself permission -- to both feel and voice dissenting opinions and feelings. I had to learn what it meant to be intellectually curious.
Students who did push the boundaries of acceptable thoughts and feelings at Marian were ostracized and punished, which has already been well documented in recent years on social media groups, following the dismissal of Barb Webb. I was not one of these students, but as a more morally astute adult with broader horizons, I sympathize with them. These students (and now almunae) are certainly not the ones highlighted in the Monitor or on the Facebook page, that is sure.
Hindsight is 20-20, and I did make lifelong friends at Marian and gain a solid educational foundation. Maybe that’s all a high school is supposed to do. On the other hand, I'm an educator now and I know that more is possible. Please give other schools in your area a fair look, as I wish my parents had.
I am a Parent and Alumnae. This school is fabulous; the dedicated teachers and staff, the friendly and energetic students, the state of the art facility, the rigorous college prep courses and the strong faith filled atmosphere make Marian High School the best choice for a young lady. After Marian, I went to U of M and excelled there. My daughter is gaining an excellent education and will be well prepared for her future - both academically and spiritually. I never regret my choice to send her to Marian, and her sister will be there soon as well. I highly recommend Marian - it is truly the best school in SE Michigan.
I cannot say anything bad about this school. The moment I shadowed at Marian during my eight grade year, I knew it was a fantastic school. The teachers are so helpful and really care for each student. The students are usually nice and friendly to their classmates and again the staff is AMAZING! I absolutely love this school and when I get to college I know I will miss Marian and all the fantastic times I have had. The school offers so many chances for leadership and the academics in every class are strong and challenging. A fantastic school for you daughter to attend!
I am an alumni of Marian High school, and I would like to say, from first-hand experience, that the quality of education is outstanding. The rigorous academic curriculum prepared me for success in both college and graduate school. Also, although I did not appreciate them at the time, the theology courses were an invaluable resource to me as a developing young woman. Those courses enabled me to contemplate my own sense of values and ethics. Unfortunately, I feel that those courses were overall heavy in religious dogma, but at least I was able to reflect on my own values. This is an opportunity I would not have had going to a public school. I really feel that the Marian community lives up to its mission statement. If I ever have daughters and live in the area, I will not hesitate to enroll them at Marian.
This school is academically rigorous, whether a student is in regular college-prep classes or AP classes. The AP classes are akin to the most strenuous classes in a university, and the stress level is high. But, aside from all the stress, Marian is a very laid back school. Students don't usually pay very much attention to personal appearance during school, so if you miss a few showers due to having 5 tests one day, no one really cares all that much (sounds disgusting, but at Marian, it's the norm). The teachers are usually quite good and care for their students, both in the classroom and outside it. I have two more years left there, but I feel I'm already well prepared for college.
My daugher graduated from Marian about six years ago. I think that sending her to Marian was the best thing we ever did for her. She grew as a person both academically and personally, and is now in Law School at the University of Detroit Mercy. My thanks to everyone at Marian for making our daughter the young lady and professional she is today.
My daughter and two of my nieces attend Marian High School. It is an excellent school because young women are optimized to live life to its fullest potential and to celebrate their individual strengths. All facets of education are offered including strong academics, exceptional athletics and amazing arts including Marian's new gym and state of the art auditorium. I would highly recommend this high school to any parent or student who is committed to providing a young lady with a qualilty education in all areas of her life.
When i began Marian as a freshman, i was a little apprehensive because I didn't come with a huge group of friends like others. I was afraid there would be cliques of friends who had known each other since elementary school. However, i immediately began to feel at home, and I've never regretted choosing Marian for my high school education. The work is challenging at times, but the teachers are exceptional and really connect with their students. This is the most amazing school!