Thornton Academy News

  • Upper School
Senior Spotlights: Tanny Hersom, Magdalene Meek, Gabriella Thompson

Tanny Hersom (Saco)
Altanzul “Tanny” Hersom has loved her time as a TA athlete. From JV soccer early in her high school career, to Varsity lacrosse beginning her sophomore year. She wishes she would have had the honor of serving as team captain had the spring sports season been able to occur. Tanny also took part in TA’a French Exchange Program, hosting a student in 10th grade and traveling abroad in 11th grade. 

Favorite spot on campus?
“Hill Stadium. I love the feeling of stepping on the turf, whether during warmups for a game or just going to practice. I think that most athletes can agree that walking under the bleachers through the small tunnel there, preparing to represent yourself and Thornton Academy, is a feeling that you cannot recreate anywhere else.”

Most loved Thornton Academy traditions and memories? 
“I will forever cherish the memories made during Homecoming Week. It's a time where all staff and students have fun to show their school spirit and compete within their classes. It was always great to see everyone smile during the different activities from the pep rallies and to see the awesome photos on Facebook.”

Favorite class, teacher, or extracurricular?
“One of the best teachers I had throughout high school was Mr. Sharland! I had him my freshman year and then again my senior year, but he showed the same care to me my whole time there. He will always say hi in the hallways and ask how you are doing with the biggest smile on his face, and TA should be very proud to include him as part of the faculty.”

What you're most proud of or your favorite project?
“I am most proud of how I have watched myself and my classmates grow. High school can be difficult as it is. To have our senior year be cut short did not help in any way. Not to say it has been easy by any means, but I am very proud of how we have managed everything and made it through to the very end. “

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
“In ten years I see myself as a graduate from Bentley University, hopefully working as an actuary or in the business world in general. I hope that I somehow manage to make other's lives better and always strive for my personal best.”

 

senior portrait of tanny hersom

 

Magdalene Meek (Halifax, England)
Magdalene is probably best known for her accomplishments as a competitive equestrian. Throughout her time at TA, Magdalene kept a very busy schedule in order to prepare her for competitions, and for her eventual goal of competing in the Olympics! This past year she was honored with the Courtney C. Reeves Memorial Trophy by the U.S. Eventing Association. This award is given to a young individual who exemplifies sportsmanship and the spirit of the sport and who gives back to the sport. In Magdalene’s case, this honor celebrates her dedication to the Young Rider Program by volunteering at events, fundraising for her team, and always being ready with a smile and words of encouragement.

Favorite spot on campus?
“I love the trees right in the center of the TA campus. They have often been the meeting place for my friends and I before school starts. I think in many ways they are like the students, ever changing and growing. I love nature and the peace that comes with it, so it was by far one of my favorite places to take a minute to myself and remember to relax and count my blessings when the pressures of life seemed overwhelming.”

Most loved Thornton Academy traditions and memories? 
“I definitely loved our TA pep rallies. There are many components that set TA apart from other schools, the diversity of the student body being one of them. However, when we were all cheering for TA at those events it gave us an opportunity to come together as one community. And that was a pretty special feeling.”

Favorite class, teacher, or extracurricular?
“I can’t say that I have a favorite teacher because honestly I love them all. I would say that I enjoyed Mr. Nelson’s impromptu motivational talks and Mr. Cote’s lessons on the psychology of the human brain.”

What you're most proud of or your favorite project?
“One of my favorite projects was assigned in Photography class. Our task was to capture some photos that would later be developed in the darkroom. I ended up taking photos of someone very special to me. Later that year he unexpectedly passed away. I feel so blessed that that specific project turned out so well and gave me some mementos of someone I loved.”

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
“Ideally in 10 years I will have gone to the Olympics and come back with a medal around my neck. But that is an audacious goal and life doesn’t always go as planned. With that being said, I do see myself running a successful business as a professional athlete in the UK. No matter what, I hope that in 10 years I’m as happy, driven, and blessed as I am today.”

 

senior magdalene meet and her dog

 

Gabriella Thompson (Saco)
Gabriella danced and performed her way through her time at TA. As a member of the Dance Team and a participant in our theatre program, she spent much of her time in the dance studio and on the stage in Garland Auditorium, both performing and honing her skills as a choreographer—an experience she greatly values and hopes to continue. She will attend Howard University this fall.  

Favorite spot on campus?
“I love the row of beautiful trees in the quad, especially during the springtime!!”

Most loved Thornton Academy traditions and memories? 
“I really love Homecoming and Spirit Week. I love being able to go off and dress goofy for the week and I love the hype during the rally. It’s nice seeing teachers and classmates coming together for fun.”

Favorite class, teacher, or extracurricular?
“My favorite classes at TA were my sophomore English class with Mr. Arenstam and the first dance class I took freshman year—Dance 1!”

What you're most proud of or your favorite project?
“My choreography. I’m really proud of the piece I choreographed for the winter dance show; it was called “House of Gold.” I also choreographed “September” with Kieya Dion our junior year which I really loved.”

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
“I think that i will be living my best life with a great group of friends, and I really want to travel!”

 

gabriella thompson in cap and gown on campus