Providing students of modest economic means with a college preparatory education aimed at helping young men and women develop the habits of mind and spirit that will enable them to be successful in college, in their careers, and in life.
Providing meaningful opportunities for professionals to interact with and mentor students while making a difference in their lives. Over 100 Cleveland-area businesses, firms, and non-profits have partnered with Saint Martin.
Saint Martin invites students into our school community who are committed to academic, spiritual, social, emotional, and physical growth. During the admissions process, Saint Martin reviews academic, disciplinary, and attendance records, as well as teacher recommendations.
While we are serious about preparing students for college and career success, we also believe that school should be fun! Caring for the whole student, we believe that involvement in extracurriculars is essential to continuing to form talented, well-rounded, and interesting individuals.
Founded in 2003, Saint Martin de Porres is Cleveland's Cristo Rey High School.
The Cristo Rey Network® was founded in 2000: just 4 years after Cristo Rey Jesuit High School opened its doors in the Pilsen community of Chicago. Cristo Rey Jesuit was a response to a survey of residents' needs conducted by the Jesuits in that neighborhood. While the Jesuits committed resources and personnel to the new high school, they needed creativity and innovation in order to sustain their commitment to educating the students of modest means who lived in Pilsen. And just so was the Corporate Work Study Program initially born - as a funding mechanism to make the dream of college-preparatory education available to students who would otherwise be denied such an opportunity.
The founding President of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School was Fr. John Foley, SJ, a long-time friend and companion in mission of Mr. Richard Clark, then Principal of St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland. In 2000 as the success of Cristo Rey Jesuit in Chicago was becoming apparent, a desire for replication emerged. Fr. Foley invited Rich to join him and several other long-time friends and Jesuit educators on a trip to visit the Fe y Alegria (Faith and Joy) Schools in Peru. It was there that the initial structure and mission of the Cristo Rey Network began to take shape.
While on the site of the school in the modest chapel that sat in the middle of the campus, Rich had an experience that changed the trajectory and purpose of his life forever. He returned home to reflect and pray about the next steps required in order to bring such an opportunity to Cleveland's students of modest means. He turned to his trusted friend and then-President of St. Ignatius, Fr. Robert Welsh, SJ for guidance and prayer. It was Fr. Welsh's enthusiasm for the mission and trust in Divine Providence that made the next few years of their partnership not only possible, but very fruitful.
Rich spent countless hours with others whom he had energized with his contagious excitement for the school project. They spoke all over Cleveland in an attempt to garner support - both from individuals and corporations who could see the possibility and the promise of such an endeavor. Permission was granted by then-Bishop of Cleveland, Rev. Anthony Pilla. Jobs were secured for the students and a small but impassioned staff, under the leadership of Mary Ann Vogel, Principal, Tom Bennett, VP, Corporate Work Study Program and Rich Clark, President, was assembled to begin the process of creating and launching Cleveland's Cristo Rey High School.
In September of 2004, Saint Martin de Porres High School opened its doors to 105 courageous and eager young men and women.
Saint Martin continues in the mission of its founders and early supporters. We strive every day to make a college-preparatory education both accessible and engaging for 400 young men and women. Our corporate partners make this dream both affordable and doubly enriching to our students. We graduate young adults of faith, purpose and service who have worked 1,600 hours in professional positions all over the city of Cleveland - running the gamut from Law to Banking to Medicine to Manufacturing. Our motto "Work, Study, Serve, Lead, Pray" inspires our students, families, staff, friends and alums to persevere in the building of the Kingdom and the transformation of our world.
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