Meet The Admissions Team 

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Abby Gagnon (Swardlick), Director of Admissions

Abby Gagnon (Swardlick), Director of Admissions

Abby Gagnon (Swardlick) is a native Mainer, who grew up in Yarmouth. She is a graduate of the University of Denver, and after receiving her degree spent four years in Rome, Italy teaching English as a second language. She has worked in the field of international education for over eight years, and joined the Thornton Academy Admissions team after working as an exchange partner with the school. Since joining Thornton Academy, she has worked to connect with students from diverse countries and help them to reach their goals while studying at TA. Her expertise with the international market and program management experience will help to further develop the Admissions Team's recruitment and enrollment efforts. Abby enjoys all things Italian, loves to stay active by practicing yoga, exercising, and traveling. 

Edwin Nùñez, Senior Associate Director of Admissions

Edwin Nùñez, Senior Associate Director of Admissions

A native of Heredia, Costa Rica, Edwin earned his BA in Economics and Chinese Language and Literature from Middlebury College. As an international student in boarding school and university, Edwin has personally experienced leaving his country for a better education; he truly understands the sacrifices that are involved when a student pursues an academic dream. Edwin joined the Thornton Academy team because he loves to work for an institution that provides students with opportunities for a life-changing experience while achieving their personal aspirations. When he is not busy welcoming prospective families to campus or recruiting students overseas, Edwin enjoys spending time in nature: hiking, cycling, running, gardening and playing soccer. He also has a deep interest in languages and world cultures.

Pat Olinger, Admissions Operations Manager, PDSO

Pat Olinger, Admissions Operations Manager, PDSO 

Pat joined Thornton Academy in 2009, at the start of the Boarding Program. As PDSO (Principal Designated School Official), she handles all things for SEVP (Student and Exchange Visitor Program), issuing and maintaining all I-20s for the international students, maintaining all student SEVIS records (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System), and keeping Thornton Academy's certifications with Homeland Security, current. She has also been known to organize an occasional Open House! Pat earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Northwestern University in Human Development and Social Policy and her Paralegal Certificate from Northeastern University. Her passions are all things ocean-related, kayaking and the beach, as well as her family, which includes two adult daughters, and two new golden retriever puppies!

Megan Theberge, Admissions Associate

Megan Theberge, Admissions Associate

Megan Theberge earned a self-designed International Studies degree from the University of Southern Maine, and had the good fortune to be able to participate in the Semester at Sea program during her studies. While traveling the world aboard Semester at Sea, Megan discovered the educational benefits of cultural exchange and travel. Since then, she has taught students of all ages in China and Thailand and has earned two ESL teaching certifications. Megan has continued to work toward promoting cultural awareness and exchange, and brings a knowledge of cultural sensitivity, diversity, and international relations to her work with Thornton Academy. In her spare time, Megan enjoys volunteering for various environmental causes and spending time outdoors with her son.

Thornton Academy
438 Main Street
Saco, Maine 04072
(207) 282-3361
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