Student Programs

Our student programs make the Upper School a unique educational environment. Students are invited to become citizens of a global society by participating in regular community service opportunities, Project Term, athletics, the performing arts, and student government. Other student programs include our Mentor/Mentee Program, First Friday Prayer Services, class retreats, the Mobile Technology Program, exchange experiences through the Network of Sacred Heart Schools, and our highly personal approach to college counseling. Explore your options with the list below to find out more.

US Exchange

Athletics

The Academy of the Sacred Heart is committed to offering every interested student the opportunity to participate in our interscholastic athletic program. Our “no-cut” policy provides a place for each student who has the commitment and desire to learn a sport. We offer a wide range of sports and a variety of championship-level teams.

At the end of the year, there is a presentation of athletic awards and recognition of our student athletes. Since 1988, the Academy of the Sacred Heart has produced five All-Americans, 16 “Coach of the Year” honorees, two Catholic League Hall of Fame coaches, and several district, regional and state championship teams, including the 2018 MHSAA Division 4 Tennis State Champions.

Our athletic program has allowed for hundreds of young women to learn new skills, enhance friendships and have fun. Additionally, several young women have received full or partial tuition assistance from Division I and II colleges for their athletic prowess, and many others continue to play in Division III programs.

Community Service

In an effort to instill community awareness and involvement in all of our students, community service is a regular, integral part of the Upper School. Each student in Grades 10-12 participates in a service activity weekly, with placements lasting one academic year. Grade 9 visits different service placements to explore options for the following year. Community service experiences can include:

  • Teacher aide duties in neighboring public school classrooms
  • Work in food distribution centers
  • Placements with the disabled, elderly and needy

The social action program is comprehensive, incorporating Catholic Social Teaching and social analysis, a speaker series, regular reflection and a culminating project. Students are frequently recognized for their commitment to service through local Youth Assistance Programs, the Society of St. Vincent DePaul and the alum association, with the Alumnae Service Award.

Besides our weekly program, students (and adults) may also participate in a monthly Saturday program at Focus:HOPE in conjunction with the young men from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School (continuous since 1989).

Exchange Program

The Academy of the Sacred Heart, Bloomfield Hills, is part of a worldwide network of Sacred Heart schools, which makes it possible for qualified ASH students to attend other schools in the United States and abroad on an exchange program. We encourage sophomores, in particular, to exchange within the network for a period of two to four weeks.

LEARN MORE about exchange >>

First Year Experience

The First Year Experience (FYE) develops an awareness of our community and all of its offerings in our Grade 9 students. The FYE curriculum evolves annually and may include experiences in art and design, an exploration of sacred spaces, and discussions on social justice issues. Field trips include the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Holocaust Memorial Center, and The Parade Company. A number of the sessions are used to introduce ninth graders to our service program with both on- and off-site experiences. The Grade 9 students have the sole responsibility of inventorying and checking the more than 150 Thanksgiving Baskets the school fills for the Lighthouse of Oakland County collection, and then delivering them to All Saints Church before the Thanksgiving break. Students maintain a journal of responses to these experiences. Grading is on a Pass/Fail basis.

Mentor / Mentee Program

Each student is assigned a Mentor (advisor). The Mentor’s role is to keep in touch with the student, offer guidance in time management and study skills, and assist with course selection. Mentor Period is held daily, in cross-age groups of approximately 10-12 students. The Mentor's relationship with each student fosters academic, emotional and spiritual growth. Over the course of four years, the Mentor comes to know each student personally.

Mobile Technology Program

All Upper School students participate in the Mobile Technology Program. The goal of this one-to-one program is to enrich and enhance the educational program of the Upper School. The Mobile Technology Program supports research, communication, problem solving and the development of presentation skills. The program is motivational for students and has been an agent for change in the instructional practices of faculty members. If you have any questions about our Mobile Technology Program, please direct them to Dino Vandenheede, Director of Technology or visit our Mobile Technology Program website.

Performing Arts

Through the Upper School's Eleventh Hour Theatre Company, students are able to participate in all aspects of theatrical productions. The theatrical repertoire includes straight dramas and musicals. Students can contribute on stage in acting roles or behind the scenes in set production or lighting and sound.

Sacred Heart students have additional performance opportunities through the Forensics program and Model United Nations. Both teams participate within a consortium of area Catholic Schools and have the opportunity to qualify for national competitions.

LEARN MORE about the arts at ash >>

Project Term

Discovering about research fields in oceanography through university programs in the Gulf of Mexico, searching deeply within the soul in the heart of the rainforest, and learning about social justice issues within and around the local community are just examples of the unique programs offered through Project Term for over 40 years. Each year every student in the Upper School participates in an 8-day experiential learning opportunity created by the faculty. Using the lens of the Goals and Criteria and the three dimensions of a Sacred Heart Education (ethical, mystical and ecological), students gain awareness of the world around.

LEARN MORE about Project term >>

Spiritual Life

Students, in relationships of trust, love and prayer, develop an “active faith in God” and the building of school community. Sacred spaces are available for student reflection, regardless of religious affiliation. Integral to the religious atmosphere, retreats provide opportunities for prayer, discussion, individual reflection and class bonding. Students in Grades 9 and 10 participate in day long, off-campus retreats. Students in Grade 11 participate in an overnight experience. Students in Grade 12 participate in a two-day, two-night retreat. At various times throughout the year, the retreat experiences are revisited and enhanced upon. Upperclassmen may also participate in student-led Kairos retreats.

The Upper School participates in all-school liturgies that take place throughout the year and allow for opportunities for prayer and reflection. Students also participate in a reconciliation prayer service, First Friday Prayer Services and additional thematic services throughout the year.

Student Government

In 1977, in an effort to involve the entire Upper School student body and faculty in school leadership, the Academy instituted the School Community Governance (SCG) Program. Our program aims to develop the potential of each student in areas of leadership, organization, management and creativity.

The SCG Program is comprised of approximately 12 small groups, each of which works for the good of the School Community. Example Groups are: Art @ ASH, Blue and Gold, Diversity, Film Club, Health, PHUN (Promoting Happiness and Unity Now), Teacher Appreciation and Women in STEM. Each group has a student leader, a faculty moderator and student members who generate programs and activities. A nucleus group, with a representative from each grade level, serves as a central governing body, reviewing agendas and minutes, approving group proposals and providing leadership.