Summer 2017 Unity Campaign Report

Sister Mary Cephas Wichman JC ’51, ’61

Sister Mary Cephas Wichman JC ’51, ’61


A native of Iowa, Sister Mary Cephas Wichman was a vowed member of the Sisters of Mercy for 66 years. She graduated from Mount Mercy Junior College in 1951, received her bachelor’s degree from Mount Mercy College in 1961, and received a master’s degree from the Catholic University of America in 1968. Sister Mary Cephas then served in elementary and middle school education in Eastern Iowa for 18 years, and as president of the Sisters of Mercy Cedar Rapids for eight years, before serving her alma mater.

During her 33 years of service on the Hill, Sister Mary Cephas was a trustee, alumni director, director of planned giving, and eventually vice president of development. She led two major building fundraising campaigns, helped build the Mount Mercy endowment, and established the Heritage Club to recognize individuals who have included the University in their estate plans.

Known for her generosity, kindness, and delicious scones, Sister Mary Cephas dedicated much of her career to developing relationships and raising support for education—a hallmark of the Sisters of Mercy. In recognition of her dedicated service, she was conferred with the title Vice President Emerita, and upon her retirement in 2004, Mount Mercy established the Sister Mary Cephas Wichman Endowed Scholarship in her honor.

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