Mother M. Borgia Egan, RSM, was recently named to the Erie Hall of Fame. She was a Sister of Mercy of Erie, Pennsylvania, and the founder of the founder of Mercyhurst College.

Oddly, the article announcing this honor notes Mother Borgia’s height. FYI, we are not told the height of any of the other four honorees. Why the reference to her height? Is that really the second most critical thing we must know about Mother Borgia? It just feels so novelty-esque.

Here are a few other descriptors that perhaps give us a bit more insight into the immense coolness of this Catholic sister (fortunately, the aforementioned article did include two of those listed below, albeit after the much more news-worthy mention of her height):

  • Born Catherine Egan on March 22, 1876, she entered the Order of the Sisters of Mercy on July 1, 1891.
  • She graduated from Catholic University of America and Duquesne University.
  • Mother Borgia was the superior of the Sisters of Mercy in Titusville, Pennsylvania.
  • She was a respected educator in the parochial schools of the Diocese of Erie.
  • She was an advocate for the higher education of women.
  • Using money earned from candy sales and other door-to-door solicitations, she bought a 70-acre farm on which Mercyhurst College would be built.
  • When the men building the college walked off the job, Mother Borgia handed the nuns paintbrushes.
  • Wanting the institution to be a masterpiece of harmony, she directed that the exterior of the college be given as much attention as its interior.
  • She was not only the founder but the first president of Mercyhurst College guiding the college from 1926 to 1959
  • There is now a Mother Borgia Egan Award, presented by Mercyhurst College to the graduating honors student who fully embodies the spirit of a liberal arts education.
  • And as the student-produced Mercyhurst college newspaper noted, Mother Borgia’s “towering stance and ready sense of humor combined with intellectual prowess make her an unforgettable woman”

Read more about Mother Borgia at the Erie Hall of Fame and at Mercyhurst College.