MHS Fast Facts
Why We’re Here
Because a family’s income should not determine a child’s outcome, Milton Hershey School offers a cost-free education to students of need. Founded over 110 years ago by Milton and Catherine Hershey, MHS continues to change lives. Our fast facts provide an overview of our school both yesterday and today.
Welcome to MHS
Milton Hershey School is one of the country’s best independent schools. It offers life-changing opportunities and experiences that other schools simply cannot. Everything is provided at no cost to students, thanks to the generosity of Milton and Catherine Hershey.
Get a snapshot of what MHS is all about. Then, go deeper.
Explore Enrollment at MHS
Take a deeper look at the enrollment process knowing we’re here to help at every step along the way.
Today's MHS Leadership
Read about our inspiring past—and see where we’re headed in the next 100 years.
Milton Hershey School is not and has never been a reform school. We accept students of financial need who meet admission criteria and complete our thorough admission process satisfactorily.
- The highest qualifying income for a family of four in 2019-20 was $52,400.
- The average family income for students enrolled in 2018-19 was $21,930. This is 15 percent below the federal poverty guideline of $25,750 for a family of four.
Fast Facts: MHS Basics
Founded in 1909 by chocolate industrialist Milton S. Hershey and his wife Catherine, Milton Hershey School offers low-income children a top-notch education at no cost to their families. We educate children in pre-K through 12th grade.
MHS is located in beautiful Hershey, Pennsylvania.
It is 25 minutes from Harrisburg and 90 minutes from Baltimore. It is just under two hours from Philadelphia.
At more than 7,000 acres, the MHS campus is one of the largest in the United States.
The MHS campus is one of the most well-resourced, technologically advanced, and well-maintained educational institutions in the nation. Our facilities includes:
- 203 buildings
- Six swimming pools
- Animal barns
- A 7,000-seat stadium
- 2,315 student computers
Where Our Students Are From
We enroll students from across the United States. International students are not accepted.
- 2,100+ students, pre-K through 12th grade.
- 50 percent of MHS students have a sibling at the school.
- There is an equal number of boys and girls.
- On average, our student demographic breakout is:
- 24% – Dauphin, Lancaster, and Lebanon Counties
- 49% – Other PA Counties
- 27% – States other than PA
Fast Facts: MHS Academics
MHS consists of three divisions. Each one emphasizes the specific needs of the ages it serves.
- Elementary Division: Pre-K through Fourth Grade
- Middle Division: Fifth through Eighth Grade
- Senior Division: Ninth through 12th Grade
MHS employs 190 caring, talented teachers committed to whole-child education.
We hire the best in their respective fields to give our students the best possible classroom experience.
Each MHS student graduates with at least one industry-recognized certification.
- Students choose and focus on one of 12 career paths.
- Students are encouraged to participate in internships/co-ops and/or apprenticeships.
All students are cared for in a loving, family-like environment. Education in the Judeo-Christian faith, the heritage of the school’s founders, is part of the MHS program and includes daily devotions and Sunday Chapel services.
- 180+ student homes, each with eight to 12 students, led by 450+ houseparents.
- Seniors live together in 10 Transitional Living apartment-style buildings to prepare them for independent living after graduation. Professional TL staff provide oversight.
Fast Facts: MHS Experience
MHS is committed to providing IT tools. We offer the technological education students need for future success. There are more computers than there are people at MHS!
IT points of pride include:
- High-tech “smart” classrooms
- Laptops for Senior Division students
- Computers in the student homes
- MHS offers experiences that help young people pursue their passions and grow.
- We offer sports, arts, leadership development, and so much more.
- Everything students need to participate is provided by the school.
Whatever they do after graduation, MHS students lead successful lives.
- Four out of five students generally plan to pursue some type of postsecondary education.
- MHS students can earn more than $90,000 in scholarships for college or career education. Strong academic performance and good citizenship are the basis.
Included at No Cost to Families
- Tuition and housing (with 24/7 security)
- Healthy meals and snacks
- School and casual clothing
- School supplies and computers
- Medical and dental care (including glasses and medications)
- Counseling services
- Tutoring and personal academic assistance
- All field trips, activities, and equipment (sports and instruments)
Institutional Growth 2020 and Beyond
MHS is committed to expanding its mission. Our goal is to provide more children with this life-changing opportunity. We strive to grow enrollment to 2,300 students.
During the 2019-20 school year, enrollment reached 2,189 students. This is the largest group of enrolled students in school history.