Visit of The German Ambassador H.E. Mrs Deike Potzel to Mount Mercy College

Mount Mercy College was thrilled and honoured to welcome the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, Her Excellency Mrs Deike Potzel, on the 8th February 2018. History was made as Mount Mercy was the first all-girls school in Ireland to receive a visit from the first ever female German Ambassador to Ireland.

1st Year students warmly welcome The German Ambassador pictured centre.
Willkommen Frau Botschafterin (Picture Credit: Irish Examiner)

The German Ambassador, H.E. Mrs Deike Potzel, pictured centre with 5th year students of German who recited the ‘Deutsch in Mount Mercy’ poem for her. To her left, Mount Mercy College Principal, Ms Tricia Ryan, and to her right, Ms Loftus, Teacher of German.

Presentation of flowers to The German Ambassador by 1st year students Aoife Feehely & Angel Metro (Picture Credit: Irish Examiner)

Presentation of Cork Crystal Candlelight Vase to the German Ambassador to commemorate her visit to Mount Mercy. This crystal was hand crafted by George Duggan, Master Craftsman at Cork Crystal.

A generous gift from The German Ambassador for the students of German at Mount Mercy College – a parcel of books for the 12-18 age group.

Roisin Fleming provides beautiful musical accompaniment playing Bach on cello

L-R: Deputy Principal Ms Ellen Van Walleghem, Principal Ms Tricia Ryan, The German Ambassador H.E. Mrs Deike Potzel , Teacher Ms. Loftus & Deputy Principal Ms Mary Roche. (Picture Credit: Irish Examiner)

The German Ambassador was welcomed upon arrival at 10.30a.m. by 1st Year students of German together with Ms Loftus and Principal Ms Ryan. Ambassador Potzel was then accompanied to the library where she was greeted with a standing ovation and applause from all students of German at Mount Mercy. Short speeches of welcome were made by Ms Ryan and Ms Loftus, followed by a performance of the Deutsch in Mount Mercy poem by 5th year students of German. The Ambassador then delivered a very engaging speech and interacted warmly with our students of German. A question and answer session ensued and Ambassador Potzel very thoughtfully answered all questions posed by our students of German. Some of the questions posed included:
· Who inspired you?
· Is it a wonderful experience to be the Ambassador?
· What was your first impression of Ireland?
· Do you think it is important that we encourage an interest in politics in young girls so that women will have a greater influence in politics in the future?
· Climate change is a reality that we are all experiencing on a daily basis – do you think Ireland can learn from Germany in terms of environmental protection?
· As the first female German Ambassador to Ireland, what special qualities do you bring to this role?
· What advice would you give to young people?
· How do you feel Brexit will affect Ireland and Germany?
· What was it like to work as head of the personal office for German Federal President Joachim Gauck?
· You have worked in Iran and Singapore, as well as in Bonn and Berlin – what have you learned from working in these places? What stands out from your experience in these countries?

Following the very interesting and informative question and answer session, a presentation of Cork Crystal was made to Ambassador Potzel to commemorate her visit to Mount Mercy College. Flowers were presented to the German Ambassador by 1st Year students of German, Angel Metro and Aoife Feehely. The German Ambassador presented a very generous gift to our Mount Mercy students of German – a wonderful selection of German books for the 12 to 18 age group. Photographs were taken and musical accompaniment was provided on cello by Roisin Fleming who played classical Bach pieces. To conclude our special hour with the German Ambassador, the European Anthem, Beethoven’s Ode to Joy, was played by music teacher Mr Vincent Whelan on piano and accompanied by Roisin on cello. The Ambassador took her final leave to a standing ovation and rapturous applause from our students of German at Mount Mercy College.

In conclusion, Mount Mercy German Department sincerely thanks the German Ambassador H..E. Mrs Deike Potzel and her team at the German Embassy in Dublin for choosing to honour us with this very special visit. Special thanks must go to Dr Florian Rehli, First Secretary, Ms Nelly Reske, P.A. to the Ambassador, and Annemarie Sullivan, Protocol. Ambassador Potzel’s warm and engaging approach proved to be a big hit with our students of German and we really appreciate the time she made available for them.

A special word of thanks must go to our management team at Mount Mercy College, namely, Principal Ms Ryan and Deputy Principals Ms Van Walleghem and Ms Roche, all of whom greatly supported this special visit. Sincere thanks to our office administrators Vivienne O Shea and Susan Archbold and to Michael Aherne and James Linehan, our caretakers, for their great help and support at all times throughout the organisation of this event.

The Music and Art Departments provided invaluable assistance during this event and most sincere thanks must go to Mr Vincent Whelan, music teacher who coordinated wonderful musical accompaniment for the occasion and to art teacher Ms Dervla Coffee, for the creation of beautiful posters to welcome the German Ambassador. Heartiest congratulations to all the Mount Mercy students of German who participated wholeheartedly in this event. Well done to our students of German.

‘Was glänzt ist fur den Augenblick geboren,
Das Echte bleibt der Nachwelt unverloren.’
                                               – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Chalkline Author Visits Mount Mercy

On Monday 5th February, Mount Mercy’s Junior Book Club hosted the visit of Jane Mitchell the author of the novel Chalkline. This is a prescribed novel on the Junior Cycle and is currently being studied by our second and third year students.
Chalkline tells the story of Rafiq who is only nine when Kashmiri Freedom Fighters raid his village in search of new recruits. Tall for his age he is the first boy to cross the chalk line into a life of brutality violence as a boy soldier.
After a welcome by Grace O’ Sullivan, Jane Mitchell spoke to the students for an hour and revealed that she had been writing since the tender age of six. She encouraged the students to keep honing their creative writing skills. She also revealed that the ending of the novel was not her original ending but as the publishers wanted a happy ending she was obliged to rewrite it! At the request of the book club, Jane Mitchell signed their own personal copies of her novel.

In an exclusive writing workshop with Room 30 she emphasised the importance of “strong verbs” and redrafting. She outlined the importance of the opening to a story and under her instruction the girls wrote and read aloud their first drafts to her. She shared that she used a prologue in her novel because she wanted to show a glimpse of how Rafiq had changed before the reader ever met him.
Overall, the event was a very successful one and we look forward to hosting more authors and poets at Mount Mercy.

Nikolaustag 2017 at Mount Mercy

1st year students of German enjoyed a surprise visit from Nikolaus in early December 2017. Christmas stockings full of festive treats were enjoyed by the students who also sang Christmas carols in German and learned about Christmas traditions in Germany.

Nikolaustag (Nicholas Day) is celebrated annually on 6th December in Germany. St Nicholas is the patron saint of children, sailors, merchants and students. Children leave boots, shoes or stockings outside the door on the evening of 5th December for St Nicholas to fill with secret gifts such as chocolates, nuts, mandarins, decorations and small toys. St Nicholas is also known as the “wonderworker” and was said to have performed many miracles.

1st year students of German 2017-2018 pictured with teacher Ms Loftus (Nikolaustag Celebration at Mount Mercy College, December 2017)

Der Nikolaus bringt uns wieder Süßigkeiten und kleine Überraschungen!

Der Nikolaus erinnert uns daran, wie viel die kleinen Freuden des Lebens bedeuten.

Viele Grüße zum Nikolaustag!

1st year students of German celebrate Nikolaustag at Mount Mercy College, December 2017



1st year students of German 2017-2018 pictured with Principal Ms Ryan (Nikolaustag Celebration  at Mount Mercy College, December 2017)

Frohe Weihnachten to all!



Cork Film Fest German Movie 2017

A group of Mount Mercy TY, 5th and 6th year students of German enjoyed attending the Cork Film Festival Schools Screening of the German movie Tschick (Goodbye Berlin) on 13th November 2017.

The 2016 comedy-drama is based on the bestselling 2010 novel Tschick (known as Why We Took The Car in English). The story revolves around two teenage boys who go on a wild summer holiday joy ride through East Germany.

Themes of friendship, love and adventure are central as the boys experience an unforgettable summer. This film was screened on the opening night of the 2016 Berlin Film Festival.

Recommended age 15+
Fatih Akin / Germany / 2016 / English subtitles / 93 minutes

Enable Ireland Campaign


Mount Mercy College Cork students Sinead Richardson, Caoimhe Boland and Anastasia Hassett hand over their phones for 24 hours to Cork hurler, and secondary school teacher Alan Cadogan who visited Mount Mercy College to promote Enable Ireland’s NO PHONE SURVIVAL CHALLENGE.
Picture. John Allen
For release: October 9, 2017
Photographer: John Allen

Alan Cadogan visits Mount Mercy College Students Who Lead the Way By Answering Enable Ireland’s No Phone Survival Challenge
It’s going to be one of Ireland’s biggest social experiments as addicted screen tapping teenagers are asked to give up their phones for 24 hours
Cork hurler, and secondary school teacher Alan Cadogan visited Mount Mercy College to promote Enable Ireland’s NO PHONE SURVIVAL CHALLENGE. He met with students at Mount Mercy College who are the first in the county to sign up to the challenge to support children and adults with disabilities in their community.
Enable Ireland’s No Phone Survival Challenge, will run for 24 hours, starting from Tuesday, October 24th at 12 noon.
The students at Mount Mercy College are asking others to step away from their phone and try to go cold turkey on October 24th. No phones, no snaps, no photos, no shares, likes or stories. It’s Like, really hard to do!
The No Phone Survival Challenge could become one of Ireland’s biggest social experiments. Ireland is pretty addicted to its phones. As a snapshot, over 40% of 16-24 year olds claim to be connected during every waking hour, according to a recent Eir survey.
According to Maria Desmond, Community Fundraising Manager, Enable Ireland, it’s a challenge that can help change the lives and futures of children and young people who rely on Assistive Technology to live more independent lives.
“By giving up their love affair with their phones, young people are not just pledging to raise vital funds,” Maria Desmond said, “They are putting the spotlight on the crucial power and impact that new technology has on the lives and independence of children and adults with disabilities.”
“Enable Ireland provides Assistive Technology to many young people and adults across the country, including here in Cork. This vital technology can support people with vision impairment or literacy challenges to read and write, it can give a voice to those who are non-speaking, or enable someone to live independently at home through the remote control of doors, windows and lights. AT can make the impossible possible, enabling people to live more independent lives at home, in school and in the workplace.”
“People think that they can’t live without their phones but by giving up their snaps, messages, calls, emails, shares, likes and stories for just one full day they can help raise vital funds to help us support many more people for whom technology is not just a luxury but essential to their quality of life,” she continued.
For more information contact:
Emma Archbold, Tel: 01 4536836 / 0879971410
Note to Editors
Enable Ireland would love if your newsroom could think about taking up the No Phone Survival Challenge on October 24th or to encourage your readers to give up their aul’ phone for just one day!
Attached are photos from our launch at Mount Mercy College.

Mount Mercy College Green Schools Team Achieves 5th Green Flag

Mount Mercy College Green Schools Committee: staff and students weeding and setting new seeds in our wildflower patch, May 2017. Back row L-R: Ms Loftus, Katie Reynolds (P.R.O.), Rebecca O Connor (Chairperson), Ms Cotter, Vika Kharoshankaya, Sophia O Sullivan (Secretary), Ms Fitzgerald. Front row L-R: Dia Harry Thomas (Co-chairperson), Theresa Rose Sebastian, Noirín Rahilly, Zara Dhamad, Benita John, Ama Kurupchu, Elana Hawe Levy (P.R.O.), Sara Ann Biju, Ms Murphy


Mount Mercy College was delighted to achieve its 5th Green Flag on the theme of biodiversity at the National Green Flag Awards Ceremony on Friday 12th May in the Radison Blu Hotel in Little Island. Accompanied by teachers Ms Fitzgerald and Ms Loftus, 6th Year students and Green Schools Committee members Katie Reynolds and Rebecca O Connor represented Mount Mercy and received the flag on behalf of all the Green Schools Committee members. Our Green Schools committee worked very hard over the past two years to achieve the 5th green flag and congratulations to all involved on this wonderful achievement.

Green Flag Awards Ceremony 12th May 2017: Leaving Cert students Katie Reynolds & Rebecca O Connor seeing and discussing things from a ‘green’ perspective 

Receiving our 5th Green Flag: L-R: Ms Fitzgerald, Rebecca O Connor, Katie Reynolds, Ms Loftus, Mr Sean Hartigan (An Taisce)

Our Wildflower Patch: Update

The Mount Mercy Green Schools Committee was busy in May weeding our wildflower patch and setting new seeds. The maintenance of native wildflowers is very important for our environment as they attract bees, insects and birds, whilst also creating an attractive visual display.

Well done to our Green Schools Team on the achievement of Green Flag Number 5

Mount Mercy Students Enjoy German Play

Theaterstück (Play): Auf dem Campingplatz (At the Campsite)

Auf dem Campingplatz. Actors David Jonas-Frei and Lydia Fischer play the central characters of Jürgen and Sonja. 

At the campsite

Student Participation

All German classes (1st year to 6th year) enjoyed a German play entitled ‘Auf dem Campingplatz’ (‘At the Campsite’) staged at Mount Mercy College on the 25th April 2017 by Onatti Productions, a UK-based theatre group. Native German-speaking actors – David from Basel in Switzerland and Lydia from Berlin – provided an extremely entertaining, lively and fun-filled comic performance which included active audience participation. The superb acting combined with excellent comic timing, very clearly spoken German, expressive facial and physical gestures, and lots of laughs provided our students of German with a novel opportunity to enjoy and engage with the German language.

The play revolves around two characters, Sonja and Jürgen, who go camping. When their taxi drops them off at a remote campsite in the middle of nowhere, Jürgen is well equipped with all necessary gear whereas Sonja is struggling to cope with a night in a tent and wondering where to plug in her hairdryer! Soon they realise they have forgotten to bring any food and, with no mobile phone reception, they face into a long and hungry night. Then the arguments commence!

Here are comments on the play from some of our student spectators:
“I thought that the play was extremely entertaining. It was very funny … I could understand most of the play through the actors’ actions. I enjoyed the way that the actors involved us in the play and got us to practise our German speaking.”
– Rachel Mackey, 1st Year student of German

“It was amazing! Sonja was very funny. I could understand more than I thought I could because of the way they acted – you could tell what they were saying. I loved the way we were part of the play too. They kept picking people out to do things.”
– Kate Tompkins, 1st Year student of German

“The actors were very good. It was a very funny play. I was called to do a part – it was embarrassing, but fun!”
– Aleksandra P., 2nd Year student of German

Some comments on the play from our German language assistant Jana Reusch:
”Am Dienstag präsentierte Onatti Productions für die Deutschschüler aller Jahrgänge ihr Stück „Auf dem Campingplatz“. Aufgeführt von den beiden deutschsprachigen Schauspielern David und Lydia, die mit diesem Stück schon erfolgreich durch das Vereinigte Königreich tourten und es nun an irischen Schulen vorführen, bietet es eine lehrreiche und vor allem lustige Abwechslung zum normalen Unterrichtsgeschehen und half den Schülern ein Gefühl für die gesprochene deutsche Sprache zu bekommen.
Meiner Meinung nach war es ein sehr lustiges und vor allem interaktives Stück, das an keiner Stelle zu lang war, sondern vielmehr dazu einlud, immer weiter zuzuhören und auf die nächste witzige Stelle zu warten. David und Lydia haben die ganze Zeit klar und deutlich gesprochen und viel Körpersprache eingesetzt, was das Verständnis für die Schülerinnen sehr erleichterte. An den Stellen, in denen sie Schülerinnen aus dem Publikum in ihr Stück miteingebunden haben, wiederholten sie alles mehrfach und der Rest konnte genießen, wie es zu komischen Situationen kam, z.B. als sich eine Schülerin im Zelt versteckte und nass gespritzt wurde. Man merkte, dass beide Schauspieler sehr viel Spaß während der Vorführung hatten und wie sie versuchten, die Begeisterung auch auf die Schülerinnen zu übertragen. Auch mit den beiden gegensätzlichen Charakteren, die sie spielten, auf der einen Seite den bodenständigen und campingbegeisterten Jürgen und auf der anderen Seite die selbstverliebte modeaffine Sonja, konnte man sich mehrfach identifizieren und mitleiden. Alles in allem habe ich das Stück sehr genossen und finde es eine gute Möglichkeit für alle deutschlernenden Schüler die deutsche Sprache mal von einer anderen Seite kennenzulernen und würde es auf jeden Fall weiterempfehlen.”

Well done to Onatti Productions on this superb play and the fine performance evident throughout, greatly enjoyed by all present.

Which hat to wear? – The audience must decide …


German Scholarship Winner 2017

Heartiest congratulations to Mount Mercy College student Laura Murphy who was awarded a 3 week scholarship to Germany based on her exceptional performance in her Junior Cert German exam and her interview in German at the Goethe Insitut, Dublin in March.

The scholarship is awarded by The German Pedagogical Exchange Service and is funded by the German Foreign Office.

Application for such scholarships is not possible as the award is merit based. Laura’s scholarship will take her to Kiel in Northern Germany next June in a group of 12 scholarship winners. As well as participating in group activities and trips, Laura will also travel to other parts of Germany as part of her scholarship.

Well done to Laura on her outstanding achievement!

Annual 5K Fun Run

A 5 km run/walk will be held in Mount Mercy College on Thursday 11th of May at 7:00pm.

All proceeds will go to the Cork Simon Community and the School Sports Hall Fund.

Adults €10

Children €5

Prizes and refreshments are available after the event. Please Support