About Ursuline High School's Tradition of Excellence
I welcome you to the Ursuline High School website. I hope it will enable you to learn more about the Ursuline legacy and its grand traditions, which have been an integral part of Catholic education in the Mahoning Valley for 117 years. Established in 1905 by the Youngstown Ursuline Sisters, Ursuline High School has provided a community of faith and an academic environment within which young people are challenged and supported to become who they have been called to be by their Creator. Our religious heritage permeates every facet of life at Ursuline. We proclaim the Word through formal instructional programs, through experiential activities, and through the celebration of the Liturgy. We build community to reinforce Catholic values as the basis for decision-making and as the model for personal relationships. We foster respect for our differences in gender, creed, race, and nationality by celebrating our unique talents, gifts, and abilities and by developing relationships that energize us in our work together. We are committed to lives of service and our students have countless opportunities to reach out and befriend the poor, the elderly, and the dispossessed.
Ursuline High School has a tradition of academic excellence demonstrated by our students who are named National Merit Finalists and Commended Scholars, by the rigorous standards of our Advanced Placement programs, and by the high percentage of Ursuline students (98%) who continue their education at colleges and universities around the country. Recent classes represent Ursuline today at Notre Dame University, John Carroll University, the University of Pennsylvania, NEOMED, and Ohio State University to name only a few.
Commitment to the Fine and Performing Arts has long been a hallmark of the school. A full curriculum of studio art instruction is enhanced by elective courses in ceramics and multimedia art. The music program features marching and concert bands that successfully compete on local, regional, and national levels. Our theater department stages three major productions each year: Student One Acts in the fall, a comedy or drama production in the winter, and the Spring Musical in May.
Our students have multiple opportunities to develop their unique gifts and talents through a wide range of extra-curricular activities. Through these programs our students hone their leadership skills, recognize the importance of hard work, channel their energy and enthusiasm, develop their creativity and imagination, and form relationships with adult mentors and their peers who share their values and interests.
Ursuline High School is blessed with a dedicated and talented staff who live the Ursuline motto Soli Deo Gloria — For the Glory of God Alone — each and every day. Over two-thirds of our teachers have master’s degrees, and all continue their education through planned professional development programs annually. Their commitment to their students extends beyond the classroom by serving as mentors, advisors, and chaperones.
I invite you to learn more about Ursuline by exploring the pages of this website, and I encourage you to visit our school in person. I would love to meet you when you visit – be it as a parent, prospective student, alumnus or friend of our school. Soli Deo Gloria…Go Irish.
Mr. Matt Sammartino, Principal
A member of the Ursuline Family since 2000, Mr. Matt Sammartino has held a variety of positions at UHS during his tenure. Matt began his career at Ursuline as a member of the Social Studies Department teaching Advanced Placement US Government and Politics, Advanced Placement American History, Economics, Psychology, and US Government. Mr. Sammartino became a member of the Ursuline Administration as the Assistant Principal for Student Affairs and was appointed Principal of Ursuline in July 2015. Mr. Sammartino has been highly active within the student community and has served as both Junior Class Advisor and Student Council Advisor. Mr. Sammartino instituted the Ursuline Student Ambassadors. Students benefit from “Mr. Sam’s” passion for United States government and politics as he teaches AP US Government and Politics. He earned his undergraduate degree at Duquesne University in Education and his Master of Educational Administration from Youngstown State University. Mr. Sammartino is a member of Saint Charles Church.
Fr. Richard Murphy, ’72, President
A 1972 graduate of Ursuline High School, Father Richard Murphy has served the Diocese of Youngstown’s secondary educational institutions for decades. Father Murphy began his teaching career in 1982 at Cardinal Mooney High School in the Religious Education Department. He was then appointed Associate Principal for Pastoral Ministry at Ursuline High School in 1986. Not only serving as a member of the Administration, Father Murphy taught in the Religious Education Department at Ursuline for 22 years, on both the junior and senior levels. In 2008, Father Murphy was appointed President of the Warren John F. Kennedy Schools and returned to his alma mater once again in 2010. In 2010, Father Murphy assumed the position of Executive Advancement Director and in 2011 was appointed, first ever, President of Ursuline High School. As President, Father Murphy acts as the administration’s liaison to the school Board of Directors and acts as the Bishop’s agent to guarantee authentic Catholic culture and identity. A native of Youngstown’s Northside, Father Murphy earned his undergraduate degree in political science and English from American University, a Master of Theology Degree from the Athenacum of Ohio, and a Master of Religious Education Degree from Boston College. Father Murphy also serves as the Pastor of Saint Mary’s Church in Mineral Ridge and Saint Stephen’s Church in Niles, Ohio.
Mrs. Michelle Carosella, Assistant Principal for Curriculum and Instruction
Mrs. Michelle Carosella began her tenure at Ursuline in July of 2017. Prior to her time at U.H.S., Mrs. Carosella worked at the Office of Catholic Schools for the Diocese of Youngstown. Mrs. Carosella is graduate of Magnificat High School in Rocky River, Ohio. She earned her Bachelor of Education Degree from The University of Toledo and Masters of Education at John Carroll University. She has worked in the Solon City Schools as an interventionist where she designed instruction for students with disabilities, as a teacher for students with limited English proficiency, as a third grade teacher as well as a media specialist. Mrs. Carosella and her family belong to Holy Family Church.
Mrs. Maggie (Matune) Damore, ’06, Assistant Principal for Student Affairs
A 2006 graduate of Ursuline High School, Mrs. Maggie Damore has served as the Assistant Principal for Student Affairs since July 2015. Mrs. Damore joined the Ursuline Faculty in 2010 as a member of the Social Studies Department. During her time in the classroom, she taught American History, American Government, American Law, Advanced Placement Psychology, and Advanced Placement US History. In addition to teaching, from 2013-2015, Mrs. Damore coordinated the school’s technology program. Mrs. Damore has been involved with many student activities, including Students of Stewardship and its mission trips to El Salvador and Nicaragua and The Student Ambassadors. In the past she has served as Sophomore Class, Senior Class, Model United Nations and Irish Times Advisor. She continues to teach AP Psychology. Mrs. Damore earned Bachelor’s Degrees in History and Adolescent/ Young Adult Education at John Carroll University, a Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Administration from John Carroll University, and a Master’s of School Administration from Youngstown State University. Mrs. Damore is a member of Saint Christine Church.
Ohio Catholic School Accrediting Association
In keeping with the mission of the OCSAA, the OCSAA process has as its hallmark a commitment to continuous improvement. As a member of the OCSAA, Ursuline High School engages in strategic planning to ensure a high-performing school in which students are grounded in their faith life and achieve at high levels.
OCSAA accreditation also requires Ursuline High School to show evidence that they are implementing OCSAA Standards. The State Board of Education has approved these Standards as comparable to the ODE’s Operating Standards for Ohio’s Schools. Through the OCSAA accreditation process, Ursuline High School maintains its state charter.
Ursuline High School is fully accredited by the OCSAA and possesses a charter from the State of Ohio to operate.
Ursuline High School is fully accredited by the AdvancED Accreditation Commission, the national commission that confers the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI) accreditation seal. This means that Ursuline High School is recognized across the nation as a quality school.
To learn more about the School Accreditation Process, visit www.advanc-ed.org.