Faculty & Staff

Directors

Mik Oyler
Mik Oyler

Head of School

  • B.S., Business Administration and B.S. Sports-Fitness Management, University of New England
  • M.Ed., Psychology, Springfield College
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Mik holds a Master of Education in Psychology from Springfield College and has over 14 years of experience leading residential programs combining academics and therapy. Mik spent over 7 years with a premier wilderness therapy program, serving as field guide, shift director, program director, and executive director. Mik served as director of the second oldest therapeutic summer camp in the country for 3 years prior to joining the Shortridge team. In his role as Head of School, Mik oversees all school operations. 

Mik also represents Shortridge on the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs – Best Practices Committee, is President of the University of New England Alumni Council, and a Board Member and volunteer with Mount Washington Valley Adaptive Sports. 

Mik and his wife are parents of an outdoor loving toddler and live in New Hampshire, where he is an avid birder and skier. 

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Katie Rainer
Katie Rainer

Executive Admissions Director

  • B.S. International Business, University of Denver
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Katie has been a valuable member of the Shortridge team before ground was even broken to build the academy. She has supported the school and its students as a mentor, most importantly, but also moonlights as a painter, landscaper, and shopper as needed. Katie is always ready for a task or challenge and enjoys sharing her creative energy with Shortridge students.

Katie is also the proud mom of twins Charlie and Lucy who were born the very same year that Shortridge opened its doors! She has a love for travel, children, and families.

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Anne Downey
Anne Downey

Academic Director

  • B.A. cum laude, Wheaton College
  • M.A., Northeastern University
  • Ph.D., University of New Hampshire
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Anne has taught a wide variety of populations, including college students, adults, gifted elementary school children, and ESL learners. A freelance writer for many years, she wrote book reviews and features for the University of New Hampshire alumni magazine and articles about architecture, design and history for various publications. She also wrote corporate histories for various clients.

She lives in Maine with her husband, two daughters, two dogs, and two cats, and enjoys reading, yoga, cooking, hiking, knitting, and volunteering in her community. Anne started her tenure at Shortridge as the U.S. history and English 10 teacher. In July 2011, she was promoted to director of studies. In her new position, Anne supervises teachers and works to strengthen the academic curriculum by building in activities that promote cognitive intelligence in all aspects of life at Shortridge.

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Megan Gerbino, M.S.N., APRN, FNP-C
Megan Gerbino, M.S.N., APRN, FNP-C

Medical Director

  • M.S.N.: Chamberlain University
  • APRN: NH Board of Nursing
  • FNP-C: American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
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Megan is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner, specializing in treating patients across the lifespan. Her most recent work has included 6 years working as a Registered Nurse at Frisbie Memorial Hospital in the Emergency Department.

From 2012-2014, Megan actually worked at Shortridge Academy, beginning as a student mentor, and progressing to Residential Manager, where she coordinated student trips and managed the residential milieu. Her time at Shortridge Academy had such an impact on Megan, that she would not pass up an opportunity to work with the students and staff once again.

Prior to Shortridge Academy, Megan was employed at a community mental health agency as a Case Manager where she worked closely with people diagnosed with severe mental illness. Megan would ensure these patients had their daily and case-specific needs met, as well as assisted in community integration.

In her free time, Megan enjoys hiking, kayaking, playing drums, and spending time with her family. 

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Meg Paul, M.S., LICSW
Meg Paul, M.S., LICSW

Clinical Director

  • B.A. Psychology, University of New Hampshire
  • M.S. Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
  • M.S.W. University of New Hampshire
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As clinical director, Meg supervises Shortridge’s therapeutic program and clinical operations. Meg comes to Shortridge Academy after working in the wilderness therapy world for many years both as a primary therapist and field guide. After getting her feet wet in wilderness, she completed a dual degree masters program, earning her a Master’s in Social Work (MSW) and her Master’s in Kinesiology (MS) from the University of New Hampshire. She is currently licensed as an Independent Clinical Social Worker in both Maine and New Hampshire.

Meg has worked as an adolescent and family therapist in a community mental health center and then in private practice. Meg utilizes a variety of methods in her work with a strength-based approach. These methods include but are not limited to cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, solution focused therapy, motivational interviewing, trauma informed therapy, and structural and family systems therapy. Meg has a passion for helping students and their families integrate the skills and tools they have been working on during their journey in residential care. Developing transferable skills lies at the heart of the work she does with students and their families.

In her free time, you can find Meg spending time with her husband and children enjoying the great outdoors

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Jessa Hobson, M.S., LICSW
Jessa Hobson, M.S., LICSW

Clinical Program Director

  • B.S. Kinesiology/Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
  • M.S.W University of New Hampshire
  • M.S. Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
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Jessalyn, also known as Jessa, comes with over 6 years of wilderness therapy experience as both a field guide and therapist. Jessa has her M.S.W. and M.S. in outdoor education from the University of New Hampshire. She specializes in working with complex family systems from her experience working as a wilderness family therapist. Jessa most often utilizes DBT and Family Systems Theory, as well as a strengths-based, relational approach, as she works with students to support them on their journey toward positive, lasting change. She strongly believes that clients participating in treatment can serve as catalysts for change within their entire family, and that family engagement in their child’s process supports the transference and maintenance of therapeutic growth.

Jessa is also an active participant in the research community of experiential treatment through her work with the Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare Research Center and the NATSAP Research Committee. She has co-authored a number of publications exploring the effectiveness of wilderness therapy in regards to individual therapeutic change, family functioning, and the physical health of clients. She is a strong advocate for increasing access to therapeutic services in order to provide comprehensive and affordable care for as many adolescents and families possible.

Jessa is an avid adventurer and traveler. She grew up in Saudi Arabia and spent almost a year adventure guiding in Oman. She spends much of her free time rock climbing throughout New Hampshire, hiking, and spending time with her family.

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Aaron Logan
Aaron Logan

Technology Director

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    Aaron develops all of the technology systems for Shortridge Academy, from networks for student computers to communications platforms, device management systems, and databases. He has worked with students to explore building game networks, creating virtual 360 video tours for the facility, and producing music with the students on digital audio workstations.

    Aaron has worked to improve the student technology experience since he started at Shortridge in 2003. His most important goal has been creating the structure for students to learn a balanced and healthy approach to personal technology and, more recently, helping families as they navigate device management at home.

    When he’s not “plugged in,” Aaron can be found enjoying the lakes region with his family, whether boating on lake Winnipesaukee or skiing, biking, hiking, or scuba diving.

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    Adam Rainer
    Adam Rainer

    Founder

    • B.A., Psychology & Philosophy, University of Denver
    • MBA, Southern Methodist University
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    Adam relates first hand to the students and parents who struggle with issues that often come with being a teenager or a parent. Shortly after graduating from a therapeutic boarding school himself, Adam realized that his personal life mission was to help other teenagers struggling to find success in life. After years of preparation and planning, Shortridge opened its doors in November 2002. Today, he maintains very strong relationships with his parents and family, largely due to his experience at boarding school.

    He and his wife Katie are proud parents of teenage twins.

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    Christina Smalley, LCMHC
    Christina Smalley, LCMHC

    Clinical Specialist

    • B.A. Psychology and B.A. Spanish, University of New Hampshire
    • M.A. Counseling, Lesley University
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    Christina has been at Shortridge Academy since 2006, coming to the academy after working 5 years for the Crossroads Program for Struggling Teens in Massachusetts. Christina has a great deal of experience in treatment planning, crisis intervention, authoritative parenting, counseling, and supervising staff. She greatly enjoys helping therapists and residential staff to develop their professional skills and increase their knowledge base. Christina is skilled in use of CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing, and Attachment/Attunement work. She also specializes in physiological psychology, often engaging students in psychoeducation on how their brain and body function best.

    Christina has three children of her own and enjoys the challenges of the adolescent population.

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    Clinical Team

    Meg Paul, M.S., LICSW
    Meg Paul, M.S., LICSW

    Clinical Director

    • B.A. Psychology, University of New Hampshire
    • M.S. Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
    • M.S.W. University of New Hampshire
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    As clinical director, Meg supervises Shortridge’s therapeutic program and clinical operations. Meg comes to Shortridge Academy after working in the wilderness therapy world for many years both as a primary therapist and field guide. After getting her feet wet in wilderness, she completed a dual degree masters program, earning her a Master’s in Social Work (MSW) and her Master’s in Kinesiology (MS) from the University of New Hampshire. She is currently licensed as an Independent Clinical Social Worker in both Maine and New Hampshire.

    Meg has worked as an adolescent and family therapist in a community mental health center and then in private practice. Meg utilizes a variety of methods in her work with a strength-based approach. These methods include but are not limited to cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, solution focused therapy, motivational interviewing, trauma informed therapy, and structural and family systems therapy. Meg has a passion for helping students and their families integrate the skills and tools they have been working on during their journey in residential care. Developing transferable skills lies at the heart of the work she does with students and their families.

    In her free time, you can find Meg spending time with her husband and children enjoying the great outdoors

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    Jessa Hobson, M.S., LICSW
    Jessa Hobson, M.S., LICSW

    Clinical Program Director

    • B.S. Kinesiology/Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
    • M.S.W University of New Hampshire
    • M.S. Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
    Read Bio

    Jessalyn, also known as Jessa, comes with over 6 years of wilderness therapy experience as both a field guide and therapist. Jessa has her M.S.W. and M.S. in outdoor education from the University of New Hampshire. She specializes in working with complex family systems from her experience working as a wilderness family therapist. Jessa most often utilizes DBT and Family Systems Theory, as well as a strengths-based, relational approach, as she works with students to support them on their journey toward positive, lasting change. She strongly believes that clients participating in treatment can serve as catalysts for change within their entire family, and that family engagement in their child’s process supports the transference and maintenance of therapeutic growth.

    Jessa is also an active participant in the research community of experiential treatment through her work with the Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare Research Center and the NATSAP Research Committee. She has co-authored a number of publications exploring the effectiveness of wilderness therapy in regards to individual therapeutic change, family functioning, and the physical health of clients. She is a strong advocate for increasing access to therapeutic services in order to provide comprehensive and affordable care for as many adolescents and families possible.

    Jessa is an avid adventurer and traveler. She grew up in Saudi Arabia and spent almost a year adventure guiding in Oman. She spends much of her free time rock climbing throughout New Hampshire, hiking, and spending time with her family.

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    Julie Sichelstiel, LICSW
    Julie Sichelstiel, LICSW

    Therapist

    • B.S. Communications/Journalism, Northeastern University
    • M.S.W. University of New Hampshire
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    Julie comes to Shortridge after having worked for 7 years in the state of Maine. She has her M.S.W. from the University of New Hampshire where she studied clinical social work and worked as a graduate assistant to the intimate partner violence professor. Julie is independently and clinically licensed in both New Hampshire and Maine and has spent her social work career working with vulnerable children, adolescents, teenagers and their families. Julie uses a cognitive behavioral approach to most of her work as well as being trained in motivational interviewing. Julie uses a strength-based approach in her individual and family systems work. Julie has also facilitated Nurturing Parenting groups and has provided training on a variety of modalities.

    Prior to Shortridge, Julie worked as a clinical supervisor and clinical therapist in the home and community treatment program in Maine. Julie provided intensive mental health therapy both individually and with the family in the family home. Julie has experience working with all child and adolescent age ranges, as well as family systems work, and has experience working with a variety of mental health diagnoses including ADHD, PTSD, ODD, depression, anxiety, and DMDD. Julie operates from a philosophy that everyone should be treated with unconditional positive regard and that everyone has the ability to make positive change.

    Julie is a New Hampshire native and has spent the majority of her life living in New England. In her free time, she enjoys taking her dog hiking, camping in the summer, skiing in the winter, and spending time in her community supporting her neighborhood. Whenever possible, Julie spends time with her family and friends and exploring the seacoast.

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    Bre Walker, M.A., ATR-BC
    Bre Walker, M.A., ATR-BC

    Therapist

    • B.S. Expressive Art Therapy & Mental Health Counseling, Lesley University
    • M.A. Expressive Art Therapy & Mental Health Counseling, Lesley University
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    Bre joined the Shortridge Academy team in April 2021.  She received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Expressive Arts Therapy and Mental Health Counseling from Lesley University.  Prior to coming to Shortridge Academy, for 9 years Bre enjoyed working in residential, home-based, group home, and outpatient therapy programs in Massachusetts and New Hampshire providing individual therapy, family therapy, milieu counseling, and community-based support. Bre comes most recently with the experience of being the Clinical Director and Outpatient Therapist working in programs in NH. Bre utilizes Solutions-Focused Techniques, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Expressive Art Therapy, Trauma Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) with children, adolescents and adults. Bre became a Board Certified Art Therapist in 2018 and is very excited to bring her creativity and passion for utilizing the arts in therapy to Shortridge Academy. Bre looks forward to collaborating with the Shortridge Academy Team and making a real difference in the lives of the students and their families. 

    Bre grew up on the Seacoast of New Hampshire and has also lived in Massachusetts. She enjoys being near the ocean, lakes, mountains and forests in this area. During her free time she enjoys spending time with her family, kayaking, watching movies, volunteering for a Local Girl Scout troop, advocating for Art Therapists in New England, making art, and learning new art techniques to share with others. 

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    Christina Smalley, LCMHC
    Christina Smalley, LCMHC

    Clinical Specialist

    • B.A. Psychology and B.A. Spanish, University of New Hampshire
    • M.A. Counseling, Lesley University
    Read Bio

    Christina has been at Shortridge Academy since 2006, coming to the academy after working 5 years for the Crossroads Program for Struggling Teens in Massachusetts. Christina has a great deal of experience in treatment planning, crisis intervention, authoritative parenting, counseling, and supervising staff. She greatly enjoys helping therapists and residential staff to develop their professional skills and increase their knowledge base. Christina is skilled in use of CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing, and Attachment/Attunement work. She also specializes in physiological psychology, often engaging students in psychoeducation on how their brain and body function best.

    Christina has three children of her own and enjoys the challenges of the adolescent population.

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    Brandon Chiapuzio, M.S., MSW
    Brandon Chiapuzio, M.S., MSW

    Therapist

    • B.A. Psychology, California State University Channel Islands
    • M.S. Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
    • M.S.W. University of New Hampshire
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    Brandon joined the Shortridge team in September of 2021, after spending time working in residential treatment in Utah. He received a Masters in Social Work and a Masters in Outdoor Education from the University of New Hampshire. Brandon strongly believes in the power of milieu therapy, and enjoys the opportunity to interact with his clients outside of the office. He believes in finding a balance between nurturing and supporting teenagers, while also challenging them on maladaptive patterns of thinking and behavior. Brandon has worked with a variety of populations, but mostly with adolescents and their families struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma, substance use, attachment difficulties, and other mental health challenges. Brandon is trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and regularly uses the DBT framework in his practice with individuals and families. 

    Brandon grew up in southern California, but has also called Utah and New Hampshire home at different points in his life. In his free time, Brandon enjoys rock climbing, surfing, hiking, camping, and spending time with his partner and their dog, Dottie. 

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    Susan Bullivant, M.S.W., Ph.D.
    Susan Bullivant, M.S.W., Ph.D.

    Therapist

    • B.A. Psychology, Smith College
    • M.S.W. University of New Hampshire
    • Ph.D. Psychology, University of Chicago
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    Susan has enjoyed spending time with the dynamic and engaging students at Shortridge Academy since she joined the staff in 2014.  Over the years, Susan has worn many hats at Shortridge from Residential Mentor, Clinical Intern and now as a full-time Therapist.  She holds a Masters in Clinical Social Work from the University of New Hampshire.  Susan utilizes strengths-based, client-centered and trauma-informed perspectives with students.

    Prior to coming to Shortridge, Susan worked in several residential treatment settings including a halfway house for Suffolk County inmates and community mental health for people with severe and persistent mental illness. Following that, she worked for John Ratey, M.D., coauthor of, Driven to Distraction, a book on ADHD, as a research assistant at Medfield State Hospital in Massachusetts.  

    Susan received her Ph.D. in Psychology with a concentration in Human Development from the University of Chicago, completing a dissertation on the effects of pheromones on how people perceive emotional facial expressions.   Her clinical internships included hospital neuropsychology assessment and university counseling center placements.

    When she is not at Shortridge, Susan’s own three children keep her busy, traveling from hockey practice to piano lessons to dance class.

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    Cathy Allen, M.A.
    Cathy Allen, M.A.

    Therapist

    • A.A. Human Services, Franklin Pierce University 
    • M.A. Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Antioch University
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    Cathy comes to Shortridge with experience working in the mental health field spanning over 20 years in a variety of settings. She earned her Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Antioch University, where she also studied Applied Behavior Analysis therapy. For the majority of her career, she has had the privilege of helping individuals diagnosed with neurological and developmental disorders co-occuring with Mental Health disorders. She finds success with utilizing a person-centered, strength-based approach, and employing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy.  

    Cathy has worked in Community Mental Health for over 10 years of her career in a variety of roles including Program Manager of a Youth Transition program.  She focused on assisting High School students with gaining life skills, self awareness, Mental Health first aid, and support to complete high school graduate requirements.  Additionally, she was also the Program Manager of a Transitional Residential Facility.  

    Cathy has lived in New Hampshire majority of her life, and enjoys spending time with her family and friends, reading, decorating, and pursuing outdoor activities. 

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    Laurienne Missud Martin, LADAC
    Laurienne Missud Martin, LADAC

    LADC Consultant

    • B.A. Psychology, University of North Carolina Charlotte
    • M.S.W. coursework Western Connecticut University
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    Laurienne has been working in the mental health field in a variety of settings for over 25 years. She has had the privilege of getting to know many clients, groups, and families. She has most enjoyed partnering with families in residential settings to help increase their connection and communication. Laurienne has been at Shortridge since fall of 2014. She believes in the change process and in each person’s ability to choose to do things differently. Laurienne most commonly uses Motivational Interviewing, Mindfulness, and CBT, but also incorporates other approaches as needed. She works well with students whose underlying depression and anxiety have lead to poor choices. When not working as a therapist, Laurienne enjoys gardening, garden design, and spending time with her own teenage daughter.

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    Academic Faculty

    Anne Downey
    Anne Downey

    Academic Director

    • B.A. cum laude, Wheaton College
    • M.A., Northeastern University
    • Ph.D., University of New Hampshire
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    Anne has taught a wide variety of populations, including college students, adults, gifted elementary school children, and ESL learners. A freelance writer for many years, she wrote book reviews and features for the University of New Hampshire alumni magazine and articles about architecture, design and history for various publications. She also wrote corporate histories for various clients.

    She lives in Maine with her husband, two daughters, two dogs, and two cats, and enjoys reading, yoga, cooking, hiking, knitting, and volunteering in her community. Anne started her tenure at Shortridge as the U.S. history and English 10 teacher. In July 2011, she was promoted to director of studies. In her new position, Anne supervises teachers and works to strengthen the academic curriculum by building in activities that promote cognitive intelligence in all aspects of life at Shortridge.

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    John Burton
    John Burton

    Director of Studies

    • B.A. University of California at Berkeley, History
    • J.D. New York University School of Law
    • M.A.T. Secondary Mathematics Education, transferring to Ph.D. University of New Hampshire
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    John has wanted to teach math and physics since he was a kid. He took mostly math and physics classes in college and received a bachelor’s degree with honors from the University of California at Berkeley. He went to New York University School of Law, receiving an American Jurisprudence Award his first year and graduating in 1990. He started his career as a corporate lawyer at Cravath, Swaine & Moore. Having moved his family to New Hampshire in 2002, he started teaching mathematics while enrolled in the University of New Hampshire’s graduate mathematics education program. He has finished all of his coursework for his M.A.T. in secondary mathematics education and is transferring to UNH’s Ph.D. program in mathematics education. John is teaching at Shortridge because of the tremendous potential he sees in the students and because he feels that Shortridge is the right place for him to help students learn.

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    Jim Doig
    Jim Doig

    Learning Center Director

    • B.A., Communication, Queens College, NY
    • M.Ed., Education, Adelphi University, NY
    • M.Ed., and C.A.G.S., School Administration, Plymouth State University, NH
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    James Doig now serves the Shortridge Academy Community as the new director of the Learning Center. He comes to Shortridge with over two decades of experience as a teacher and administrator in both the public and private education sectors. Jim recently completed the founding of a group home-based school that received its full state licensing and accreditation. In addition to this, he taught at McLean Hospital in Belmont, MA, and was the recipient of the Partners Healthcare Award for Instructional Excellence. As a public middle-school administrator, Jim’s school became a two-time recipient of the New Hampshire School of Excellence award. Jim was also the first educator to be named New Hampshire Safety Manager of the Year in recognition for his groundbreaking work in school safety planning. Prior to working in the education field, Jim was a corporate legal assistant for a Fortune 500 company and a media producer for national and regional radio networks. For his media work, Jim was the recipient of the Orson Welles Award for outstanding radio creativity.

    Jim and his wife Jen currently reside in central New Hampshire, where they are building a new house. Their daughter is a graduate of Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and is presently a retail pharmacist.

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    Amy Leonard
    Amy Leonard

    Mathematics Teacher

    • B.A., Mathematics, Colby College
    • M.S., Mathematics, University of New Hampshire
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    Amy attended Colby College in Waterville, Maine and majored in Mathematics. She earned her Master’s degree at the University of New Hampshire. She also taught courses at the University of New Hampshire while she worked as the Associate Director of the Mathematics Center there. She has also conducted extensive one-on-one tutoring. Amy has instructed students in Mathematics at Shortridge Academy for 12 years including Algebra I and Pre-Calculus. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, walking, knitting, snowshoeing and teaching Sunday school to five-year-olds.

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    Amanda Pelchat
    Amanda Pelchat

    English & World History Teacher

    • B.A., English Teaching, University of New Hampshire
    • M.Ed., Secondary English Education, Franklin Pierce University
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    Amanda began her career in education at the University of New Hampshire – Durham, where she pursued a bachelor’s degree in English teaching while managing the Upper School Writing Center for Berwick Academy in Berwick, ME. From there, Amanda worked in special education for 3 years in a program designed specifically for at-risk students and students with emotional and behavioral disorders. She then began interning and teaching at Dover Middle School and Dover High School in Dover, NH. Before joining the Shortridge family, Amanda taught 6th grade language arts at Dover Middle School after completing her master’s degree in secondary English education through Franklin Pierce University. Her cumulative experiences have led Amanda to adopt a philosophy of flexible teaching centered around diverse learning styles and student choice. Amanda is elated to be teaching at Shortridge Academy, where she has finally accomplished her dream of teaching high school English to bright and gifted teenagers.

    In her spare time, Amanda enjoys creative writing, interior design, antique furniture restoration, exploring the great outdoors, and traveling.

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    Joel Chagnon
    Joel Chagnon

    Academic Life Manager

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      Joel Chagnon has been an educator for over 25 years.  He spent two decades in public schools teaching at the elementary, middle school, and high school levels. In addition to being a classroom teacher, Joel has also served as a principal, assistant principal, program director, and athletic director. During his time in classroom teaching, Joel was the recipient of the first “Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year” award in 2000.

      Joel eventually went on to run his own business, was the director of admissions and an instructor at a career school. He also helped lead a private company in the area of human resources and public relations. Volunteer service has helped defined Joel’s life. He has served as the Athletic Boosters President in his local community for the past 20 years, has run youth athletics for two decades, and founded  “Lorraine’s Gift” in 2010 which helps provide Thanksgiving dinners to local families in need.

      Joel has been a sports broadcaster for local cable and often finds himself doing public address work for women’s and men’s basketball at both Great Bay Community College and the University of New Hampshire. Joel lives in New Hampshire with his two dogs and two cats and enjoys summers at his lake cottage in Maine.  

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      Francie Wadsworth
      Francie Wadsworth

      Studio Arts Teacher

      • Bachelor of Fine Arts Syracuse University
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      Prior to moving to New Hampshire, Francie lived in New York and Massachusetts and received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Syracuse University. For over twenty years she has enjoyed teaching art to students of all ages, in both public and private school settings. Francie worked for several years with “Access 21”, a program which offers learning opportunities that address college and workforce readiness and success.

      At Shortridge Academy, Francie provides a ‘Choice-Based Art’ program that promotes student independence, creativity and problem solving skills. This allows students to grow at their own pace and gives them the opportunity to respond to their own ideas. With a passion for drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture, fashion design, and illustration, Francie encourages students to tap into their interests in order to create thoughtful and meaningful works of art. Her goal is to create a safe and secure place where students have the freedom to explore, have fun, and take creative risks. Outside of the school setting, Francie enjoys painting, biking, canoeing, and spending quality time with her family.

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      Crysta Ronda, B.S.
      Crysta Ronda, B.S.

      Science Teacher

      • Certified Personal Trainer and Behavior Change Specialist National Academy of Sports Medicine.
      • Bachelor’s in Nutrition with a concentration in Dietetics from the University of New Hampshire
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      Crysta Ronda is a life-long resident of New Hampshire. She earned her Bachelor’s in Nutrition with a concentration in Dietetics from the University of New Hampshire. Post-graduation, Crysta worked in community mental health for four years by facilitating the “InSHAPE”  wellness program for those with severe and persistent mental illness to support health-risk reduction through lifestyle and behavior change. She is certified both as a personal trainer and behavior change specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. She is currently working towards her Master’s degree in Education and hopes to instill curiosity for the sciences as well as increase her students’ self-efficacy and resiliency. In her spare time, Crysta works on her off-grid homestead that she has built with her husband in the Lakes Region. She enjoys foraging and farming, but mostly spending time with her husband and two dogs. She is excited to be a part of the Shortridge Community! 

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      Jenn Soukup, M.S.
      Jenn Soukup, M.S.

      Science Teacher

      • B.S. Marine Science Boston University
      • M.S. Biological and Environmental Sciences with a specialization in Ecology and Ecosystems URI
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      Jenn Soukup graduated from Boston University with honors, earning a Bachelor’s in Marine Science, and then went on to the University of Rhode Island, where she received a Master’s in Biological and Environmental Sciences with a specialization in ecology and ecosystems. Jenn’s teaching philosophy is to encourage students to be curious, hands-on, take chances and make mistakes, ultimately developing their inner confidence. When working as a teaching assistant at URI and UNH, Jenn found her passion: teaching. In addition to being a science instructor at Shortridge Academy, Jenn is currently working towards a PhD in marine biology at the University of New Hampshire.

      Jenn grew up in Illinois, came to New England for the schools and stayed for the beautiful autumns!  When not teaching, she loves to hike, swim and scuba dive, garden, read sci-fi/fantasy/non-fiction science, crochet, and even play water polo! Jenn’s favorite quote is “Now is the time to learn more, so that we may fear less” – Marie Curie.

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      Teddy Ludwig, M.Ed.

      History and Psychology Teacher

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        Teddy attended Worcester State University where he received his Masters in Education. He currently lives in Rochester, NH. Prior to joining Shotridge, Teddy worked as a program director for William Lawrence Camp in Tuftonboro NH, and more recently, he worked as a behavioral health group facilitator at Bonfire Behavioral Health in Rochester, NH. He is fluent in German, loves playing chess, and is a big fan of athletics. Teddy swims and runs as well as practices Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in which he competes competitively. He is very passionate about teaching. Teddy says he loves the process of learning both personally and professionally. Discovering new ways for himself to retain information and to convey it is a fascinating process for him.

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        Debbie Fuller, B.S.
        Debbie Fuller, B.S.

        Academic Mentor

        • B.S. Human Services Fisher College
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        Debbie earned her B.S. in Human Services from Fisher College in Boston. She is a New Hampshire native and has lived in many different towns throughout southern N.H. Over the last 13 years, she has worked in a variety of different settings including private behavioral health agencies, public and private schools, and a community mental health center. In these previous experiences she gained extensive training and knowledge implementing principles of Applied Behavior Analysis. Using these principles, she has supported many individuals in reaching their goals. Debbie is excited to extend her experience to Shortridge Academy. She lives in her newly built home by the lake with her wife, two dogs, and two cats. She enjoys being active and keeping busy. Some of her favorite hobbies include softball, billiards, traveling, and taking her dogs on adventures. Debbie and her wife also run a small personal fitness and skills training company with a dream of opening an indoor training facility for softball and baseball athletes. 

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        Residential Staff

        Jessa Hobson, M.S., LICSW
        Jessa Hobson, M.S., LICSW

        Clinical Program Director

        • B.S. Kinesiology/Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
        • M.S.W University of New Hampshire
        • M.S. Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
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        Jessalyn, also known as Jessa, comes with over 6 years of wilderness therapy experience as both a field guide and therapist. Jessa has her M.S.W. and M.S. in outdoor education from the University of New Hampshire. She specializes in working with complex family systems from her experience working as a wilderness family therapist. Jessa most often utilizes DBT and Family Systems Theory, as well as a strengths-based, relational approach, as she works with students to support them on their journey toward positive, lasting change. She strongly believes that clients participating in treatment can serve as catalysts for change within their entire family, and that family engagement in their child’s process supports the transference and maintenance of therapeutic growth.

        Jessa is also an active participant in the research community of experiential treatment through her work with the Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare Research Center and the NATSAP Research Committee. She has co-authored a number of publications exploring the effectiveness of wilderness therapy in regards to individual therapeutic change, family functioning, and the physical health of clients. She is a strong advocate for increasing access to therapeutic services in order to provide comprehensive and affordable care for as many adolescents and families possible.

        Jessa is an avid adventurer and traveler. She grew up in Saudi Arabia and spent almost a year adventure guiding in Oman. She spends much of her free time rock climbing throughout New Hampshire, hiking, and spending time with her family.

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        Isaac Bancroft
        Isaac Bancroft

        Residential Program Manager

        • B.S., Outdoor Education, University of New Hampshire
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        Isaac graduated from UNH with a bachelor’s degree in outdoor education and a minor in Asian studies. He married his best friend two weeks after graduation and moved to Rhode Island, where he worked as a kayak and stand-up paddle board guide and instructor. Isaac is an outdoor enthusiast. He loves snowboarding, backpacking, back-country skiing, kayaking, SUP, canoeing, rock climbing, biking, and horse-back riding, and has a plethora of other hobbies such as reading, table tennis, anime, puzzles, movies, board games, video games, and all manner of sports. Isaac’s “jack-of-all-trades” personality gives him the ability to connect and engage with the Shortridge students and their varied interests. Isaac worked at Shortridge in 2016 and is excited to be back again, this time living in on-campus staff housing.

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        Christana Patrick
        Christana Patrick

        Residential Manager

        • B.S., Social Work, University of New Hampshire
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        Christana “Chrissy” Patrick graduated from the University of New Hampshire with her bachelor’s degree in social work. As a residential mentor at Shortridge, she enjoys supporting and engaging with the students and talking about anything on their minds. Chrissy enjoys sharing her love of art with students, including painting (acrylics) and making dream catchers.

        Chrissy is an avid collector of free items like stickers, posters, and buttons, most of which she gathers from the New York Comic Con. She has two cats: Eevee, who is a cuddle bug, and Ruger, who is an 18-pound grumpy old man.

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        Amber Witham, B.A.
        Amber Witham, B.A.

        Residential Supervisor

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          Amber graduated from Southern New Hampshire University with a Bachelor’s in Psychology with a concentration in Mental Health. She is passionate about exploring the intersection of youth mental health and community perspectives. While in college, she volunteered with the New Hampshire Juvenile Diversion Program, working with youth and their families as a role model and guide through the juvenile rehabilitation process. She also has experience as an academic tutor in subjects including English Literature and French. In her free time Amber enjoys writing, reading, hiking, yoga, collecting vinyl records, and spending time with animals.

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          Coleman McKaig, B.S.
          Coleman McKaig, B.S.

          Residential Supervisor

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            Coleman is one of our residential mentors who graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a Bachelor’s of Science in Outdoor Education and Leadership. A native Vermonter, he has a passion for hiking, skiing, biking, and lots of other outdoors activities. As a long time summer camp counselor, he has summited all 48 of New Hampshire’s 4000-foot mountain peaks, often surrounded by the smiling faces of happy campers. In addition to outdoor pursuits, Coleman enjoys spending quality time with his family and friends (pets included!) and reading, playing board and video games, and watching New England sports teams.

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            Jackie Garland
            Jackie Garland

            Residential Mentor

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              Jackie has been in the Healthcare and Behavioral health field for the last 10 years and has worked in numerous long- and short-term care facilities assisting those with mental and physical disabilities. Jackie has also worked with children, teens, and the elderly helping them achieve everyday tasks such as completing their ITP’s and IEP’s. She has worked closely with case managers and directly with families to help gain better understanding of each individuals needs and aspirations. Jackie am currently enrolled to become a RBT and acquire her AMA qualifications. Outside of work Jackie enjoys all things outdoors, rocking, coin collecting, and going to antique car shows.

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              Megan Pickford, B.A.

              Megan has a Bachelor’s in Psychology from Virginia Tech and is currently pursuing a masters degree in social work and kinesiology from University of New Hampshire. She is passionate about the field of outdoor behavioral health and has worked as a field guide in wilderness therapy for over two years. She also has experience working in crisis prevention programs, adolescent group homes, and special education programs. While working at Shortridge Academy, Megan hopes to gain a better understanding of the transition process from wilderness to home for adolescents. Megan loves all Washington D.C sports teams and is a hiker in the summer and a skier in the winter. She has been learning to rock climb and mountain bike since moving to New Hampshire. Megan’s dog, Maple, accompanies her on many of her adventures! 

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              Christopher Lubatti
              Christopher Lubatti

              Security Supervisor

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                Chris was born in New London, Connecticut. His father was a NAVY nuclear engineer and ship commander, and his mother was a self-taught machine technician and farmer. He advanced in high school quite quickly and finished his senior year’s credits during his freshman year at NECC. Chris then answered the call of duty during a time of war and earned the title of U.S. Marine. Due to high test scores and simple merits in boot camp, he was recruited to become one of the select few of the Presidential Guard. Chris protected the commandant of the Marine Corps, his Generals, and multiple Naval admirals until he was cleared to protect President Obama and his family. Later, he returned to the Marines to train and lead infantrymen for deployment to Afghanistan’s Kajaki province. They won the battle for Pyramid Hill and Chris later achieved his greatest goal in life bringing all his Marines back alive. When his contract came to an end, he was quickly recruited into the private sector. Between trips, he worked and traveled with celebrities as a bodyguard with Gavin de Beck and associates, Armed shift patrol leader, and later, manager for Knolls security as a security supervisor for a level 1 trauma Center. He decided to return to Maine to help his parents in their elder years and work locally. Some of Chris’ hobbies include farming, martial arts, construction, and property investments. 

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                Ryan Donahue
                Ryan Donahue

                Residential Mentor

                • B.A., Secondary Education/History, New England College
                • M.Ed., Language Arts/Literacy, New England College
                • Reading and Writing Specialist Certification, Granite State College
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                Ryan—better known to Shortridge students as Donny—holds a master of education from New England College and a certification as a reading and writing specialist from Granite State College. Ryan has been a residential mentor at Shortridge since the fall of 2008. Donny enjoys taking students on various outings, especially to Gunstock Mountain for night skiing or a weekend day trip. In the warmer months, Donny enjoys organizing surfing trips after school to Jenness Beach in Rye, NH.

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                Chaz Marie Rodgers, B.A.
                Chaz Marie Rodgers, B.A.

                Residential Mentor

                • Bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of New Hampshire
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                Chaz Marie began working at Shortridge Academy with a Bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of New Hampshire, and with a longstanding wish to help people heal and feel well in the mind, body, heart, and spirit. Through her education in school and her experience with many teachers and healers elsewhere, she has enjoyed learning about all kinds of healing modalities for mental wellbeing, and is especially interested alternative medicine and healing practices. Chaz values healing through meaningful connections, and appreciates spending time with and getting to know all of the students at Shortridge. Chaz spends much of her free time with family and friends. Some of her passions include riding motorcycles, darkroom photography and creating art, travel, and singing in a rock band. 

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                Ian Gollihur
                Ian Gollihur

                Residential Mentor

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                  Ian is going into his senior year at the University of New Hampshire pursuing a B.S. in Social Work with a minor in Public Health. He is deeply passionate about mental health, especially in youth populations. Outside of work Ian is a peer advocate at a UNH program that works to support survivors of sexual and interpersonal violence. He also loves hiking, reading, photography, and watching/playing a variety of sports, especially rowing and basketball.

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                  Amy Cameron

                  Residential Mentor

                  • Bachelor of Arts in Dance Education from Goucher College
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                  Amy Cameron has been educating young people in a variety of ways for 15 years. Her passion for dance influenced her training early on and she began her career as a dance teacher. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts in Dance Education from Goucher College, Amy became the director of the Ballet School of Glyndon. She spent several years in New York City after this, and taught dance and social studies at a private boarding school in the suburbs of Baltimore, Maryland. While there, she also choreographed several musicals for middle and high schools, including Hello Dolly, A Chorus Line, Annie, The Fantasticks, and Little Shop of Horrors. In 2012, Amy moved to Wilmington, North Carolina and began teaching all levels of dance at North Brunswick High School and Pine Forest High School. While here she enjoyed incorporating a variety of dance styles and choreography into her lessons. When her husband Chris got a new job in New Hampshire, Amy was excited for the opportunity to re-join the private school community, and is thoroughly enjoying her new position at Shortridge Academy. When she is not on campus, Amy spends time with her husband Chris and her fur babies.

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                  Sam Hoffman
                  Sam Hoffman

                  Residential Mentor

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                    Sam Hoffman has spent the last 8 years in the healthcare and behavioral health field. He is currently going to York County Community College for his Associates Degree in Behavioral Health. As a residential mentor at Shortridge, he appreciates supporting and engaging with the students and talking about anything on their minds. He loves sharing his enjoyment for all things crafty and creative with the students. Outside of Shortridge Academy, Sam enjoys spending time with his family, many different pets, and friends. Sam has a variety of different interests from reading to anything creative like drawing, sewing, painting, or building to spending time outdoors at the beach or lake.

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                    Medical Personnel

                    Megan Gerbino, M.S.N., APRN, FNP-C
                    Megan Gerbino, M.S.N., APRN, FNP-C

                    Medical Director

                    • M.S.N.: Chamberlain University
                    • APRN: NH Board of Nursing
                    • FNP-C: American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
                    Read Bio

                    Megan is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner, specializing in treating patients across the lifespan. Her most recent work has included 6 years working as a Registered Nurse at Frisbie Memorial Hospital in the Emergency Department.

                    From 2012-2014, Megan actually worked at Shortridge Academy, beginning as a student mentor, and progressing to Residential Manager, where she coordinated student trips and managed the residential milieu. Her time at Shortridge Academy had such an impact on Megan, that she would not pass up an opportunity to work with the students and staff once again.

                    Prior to Shortridge Academy, Megan was employed at a community mental health agency as a Case Manager where she worked closely with people diagnosed with severe mental illness. Megan would ensure these patients had their daily and case-specific needs met, as well as assisted in community integration.

                    In her free time, Megan enjoys hiking, kayaking, playing drums, and spending time with her family. 

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                    Jade Kenyon, BSN
                    Jade Kenyon, BSN

                    Nursing Services Manager

                    • BSN Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA
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                    Jade obtained her BSN degree at Old Dominion University in Norfolk VA. Her previous nursing experience has been primarily focused in neurosciences (neurology and neurosurgery) and trauma. She prefers to practice in a holistic manner, integrating mind, body, and spirit, combined with conventional medicine. In her experience, “a person’s mentality and mindset, mixed with a little sense of humor, can have a very powerful effect on their overall health.”

                    Jade was born and raised in Michigan, where her family still resides and she loves to visit. Currently, she lives in New Durham with her significant other and their baby boy. A few of her favorite things are traveling, food, coffee, reading and maintaining a healthy balance between adventure and relaxation. Her happy place is either a bonfire on a summer night or sitting on her porch on a crisp fall evening.

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                    Kate Mariscal, R.N.
                    Kate Mariscal, R.N.

                    Nurse

                    • RN Hocking College for Nursing
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                    A graduate of Hocking College for Nursing, Kate’s professional experience includes work in hospital surgical and med/surg environments. Kate has also worked as a nurse at a school for children with developmental disabilities. Originally from Ohio, she spent the last few years traveling the states with her husband in a converted school bus/RV that they call their “skoolie”. Kate believes in surrounding oneself in positivity. She dreams of traveling the world, learning every language her brain will allow, and having a taco truck. When not working, Kate homeschools her four kids.

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                    Phoebe Robinson, B.A.
                    Phoebe Robinson, B.A.

                    Nurse

                    • B.A. in Wilderness Leadership from Prescott College
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                    Phoebe came to Shortridge Academy after a short stint as an infusion nurse following a long stint as an ER nurse and wilderness medicine instructor. Prior to becoming a nurse, Phoebe was a WEMT, worked as a ski guide and ski patroller, raft guide, and worked as a wilderness therapy guide after obtaining her B.A. in Wilderness Leadership from Prescott College. She is thrilled to have come full circle and be working with youth again in a therapeutic setting. She very much values the role that nature and animals have to play in grounding and healing us.

                    Phoebe currently lives off the grid on a farm and homestead in Maine where she and her partner and two young daughters have been building their house themselves with their own timber. In the winter they ski down their half mile long driveway. She also just started a nature-based homeschool co-op on her farm for her children- and other children- to connect with each other and Mother Earth. In her free time… oh wait, she doesn’t have any. 

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                    Kelly Collins, BSN, RN, CEN, CPEN

                    Kelly graduated from University of New England in Maine and currently lives in. Acton Maine. For 20 years, she was an Emergency Department RN, a critical care nurse, a  pediatrics nurse, and obtained her ACLS, PALS, TNCC, ENPC, and BLS certifications. She and her spouse are foster parents and farmers. They raise nubian goats, Great Pyrenees dogs, and lots of children. Kelly is the current Nurse Government Affairs Chair for the state of Maine. She heads to Washington regularly for meetings with senators and representatives to discuss healthcare rights and bills.

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                    Administrative Staff

                    Shannon Donovan, B.S., MBA

                    Business Manager

                    • Bachelor of Science Management and Accounting
                    • MBA in Energy Sustainability Studies
                    Read Bio

                    ·       

                    Shannon received her Bachelor and Master degrees at Franklin Pierce University and has spent most of her career in Office Management and Accounting.  She grew up in New Hampshire but has lived in the Mad River Valley of VT and on Cape Cod and is back in Central New Hampshire.

                    Shannon lives with her boyfriend and cats where she loves to spend time outdoors in her garden, running, hiking and enjoying the changing seasons.  

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                    Julie Muldoon
                    Julie Muldoon

                    Office Administrator

                    • B.A. in Political Science, University of Connecticut
                    Read Bio

                    Before joining Shortridge Academy, Julie obtained her Bachelor of Arts in political science at the University of Connecticut. She spent her junior year abroad studying in England due to a strong interest in international politics, and even went back and spent several months living and working there after graduating. Since that time, she has had a varied and diverse work life that has included office administration, dental assisting, insurance billing, and project management. She lives locally with her two children, an English mastiff, and two cats. Her favorite hobbies are reading, spending time in nature, and taking day trips with her Children. Julie is responsible for supporting all areas of Shortridge Academy, including human resources, office coordination, database administration, admissions, and tours.

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                    Jesse Muldoon
                    Jesse Muldoon

                    Facilities Supervisor

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                      Born and raised in Connecticut, Jesse spent decades with the Manchester, CT, Recreation Department, beginning as an apprentice and working his way up to program director of after-school programs grades K through 5. He also taught skateboard lessons and worked with special needs children. Jesse is a mechanic who began working on his own cars, and then continued professionally working on a wide range of vehicles from race cars to recreational vehicles. He has also painted professionally, anything from advertising signs to fine cabinet work. Jesse lives in Alton, enjoys spending time with his children, and being outdoors. 

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                      Michelle Carter B.S.
                      Michelle Carter B.S.

                      Food Services Manager

                        Read Bio

                        Michelle received her B.S. in Business Administration from Emmanuel College and has been with Shortridge Academy since 2012. She holds certificates for Food Handling, Food Allergies, Basic Nutrition, and as a ServSafe Manager. 

                        Michelle spent most of her life in Massachusetts before moving to New Hampshire in 2012 and has owned and operated two successful family restaurants. After selling the 2nd restaurant in 2011, she and her husband decided to move north where she continues to enjoy cooking for family and friends. Michelle and her husband have raised 4 children in New Hampshire where she enjoys being a Girl Scout leader and a CCD Teacher. She also was a foster parent and happily became the legal guardian of her daughter, Cassie.

                        Michelle enjoys spending time with her family, children and grandchildren, while gardening, cooking, and spending time outside with her German Shepherd Willy.

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                        Jessica George

                        Jessica earned her B.S. in Social Sciences / Secondary Education that she utilized to teach geography in middle school for five years. She lived for 12 years in the southern part of the United States before moving to New Hampshire, where she received an Associates Degree in Culinary Arts, a certificate from Le Cordon Bleu, and her ServSafe Management Certificate. In her free time she enjoys baking, sewing, and spending time with her family. She lives with her two children and her beloved pets Harry the dog and Pearl the cat.

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                        Joe Bouthillette

                        Joe attended Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI. He has worked in a variety of restaurants over the years, including; Rosa Restaurant and Martingale Wharf in Portsmouth, NH, Menton in Boston, Elda in Biddeford, ME, and Persimmon in Providence. Joe is a very adventurous cook and eater. He enjoys things that are different and will try just about any dish or cuisine. In the future he hopes to travel the world, seeing the sites and trying local foods. Joe is also a big fan of music. He loves going to concerts and has a small record collection that he inherited from his father and grandfather. He grew up in Southern Maine and currently lives there with his wife and young son.

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                        Eileen Parisi
                        Eileen Parisi

                        School Cleaner

                          Read Bio

                          Eileen is happy to be working in the Shortridge community. She was born and raised in Gloucester, Massachusetts and has a personal and professional background working in addiction and recovery. Widowed at a young age, Eileen raised her two children as a single parent. She considers her children to be her inspiration and proudest achievement. She currently resides in Acton, ME with her fiance, Chris. In her free time she enjoys taking dance classes, reading, and rummaging through antique shops.

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                          Admissions Staff

                          Katie Rainer
                          Katie Rainer

                          Executive Admissions Director

                          • B.S. International Business, University of Denver
                          Read Bio

                          Katie has been a valuable member of the Shortridge team before ground was even broken to build the academy. She has supported the school and its students as a mentor, most importantly, but also moonlights as a painter, landscaper, and shopper as needed. Katie is always ready for a task or challenge and enjoys sharing her creative energy with Shortridge students.

                          Katie is also the proud mom of twins Charlie and Lucy who were born the very same year that Shortridge opened its doors! She has a love for travel, children, and families.

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                          Olivia Therrien, B.A., M.S.W.
                          Olivia Therrien, B.A., M.S.W.

                          Admissions Coordinator

                          • B.A. in Sociology from Colby-Sawyer College
                          • M.S.W. from Boston University
                          Read Bio

                          Olivia holds a B.A. in Sociology from Colby-Sawyer College and a M.S.W. from Boston University. Prior to joining Shortridge, Olivia spent 8+ years working with children, adolescents, and families providing home-based therapeutic support and services. This sparked a desire to explore macro-social work. Olivia has always enjoyed working closely with families and recognizes the value of youth and family voice. Olivia and her husband live in New Hampshire with their rescue dog. Olivia loves road trips, camping, and considers herself to be a foodie.

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                          Christina Smalley, LCMHC
                          Christina Smalley, LCMHC

                          Clinical Specialist

                          • B.A. Psychology and B.A. Spanish, University of New Hampshire
                          • M.A. Counseling, Lesley University
                          Read Bio

                          Christina has been at Shortridge Academy since 2006, coming to the academy after working 5 years for the Crossroads Program for Struggling Teens in Massachusetts. Christina has a great deal of experience in treatment planning, crisis intervention, authoritative parenting, counseling, and supervising staff. She greatly enjoys helping therapists and residential staff to develop their professional skills and increase their knowledge base. Christina is skilled in use of CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing, and Attachment/Attunement work. She also specializes in physiological psychology, often engaging students in psychoeducation on how their brain and body function best.

                          Christina has three children of her own and enjoys the challenges of the adolescent population.

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                          Security Staff

                          Cassie Goodfellow, A.A.B.
                          Cassie Goodfellow, A.A.B.

                          Security Guard

                          • Associate of Applied Business in Information Technology
                          Read Bio

                          Born in Somerville, MA, and currently residing in the NH lakes region, Cassie comes from a diverse background. She holds an AAB in IT, has worked as a licensed massage therapist, and even a CDL school bus driver, among other things. She found her passion for helping others, working for six years as a recovery support specialist and overnight security at a residential substance abuse treatment facility. During that time, she also volunteered as a trained recovery coach at a local addiction referral center while completing credits toward becoming a Certified Recovery Support Worker during the day. She continues to work toward becoming a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor. 

                          Cassie is a self-trained artist working in mixed media, drawing, pyrography, and other mediums. Much of her art features her vast love for owls. Her most recent endeavors include metalsmithing in copper and silver, wire-wrapping, beading, and making gemstone jewelry. When not at home being artistic, she can be found exploring dirt roads in her 4×4, hiking, camping, or kayaking. 

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                          Jared Blount
                          Jared Blount

                          Security Guard

                            Read Bio

                            Jared was born and raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and attended Trinity Catholic High School in Newton, Massachusetts. Jared is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice at the Woods College of Advancing Studies at Boston College. He currently resides in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, but previously lived in Maine for a number of years. He also received law enforcement training at the New England Law Enforcement Training Center in Chelsea, Massachusetts.  Additionally, he has received training, and served some time in the United States Army as a cavalry scout. Jared is an avid, skilled and passionate outdoorsman, and has taught classes in wilderness survival, primitive skills, tracking, archery, wild edible and medicinal plants. He hopes to someday bring his entire unique skills to an educational program at Shortridge Academy. Jared enjoys hiking, camping, traditional archery, and practicing his wilderness skills in his spare time. He is also currently writing a novel, enjoys fitness, and tabletop role playing games.     

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                            Academy Advisors

                            Kathy B. Patch
                            Kathy B. Patch, M.S., C.S., APRN

                            Academy Advisor

                            • B.S., Psychology, Lesley College
                            • M.S.N., Rivier College
                            Read Bio

                            Kay is ANCC board-certified as a clinical specialist in child and adolescent psychiatric mental health nursing and adult psychiatric mental health nursing. She has provided advanced practice outpatient care to the community sector, to private associate groups, and as an independent sole owner/practitioner. Realizing the imperative for a licensed health center staffed by licensed nurses, Kay envisioned and designed the first NH licensed Shortridge Academy Health Education Center, fundamentally supported by nursing theory and practice guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association, and supported by policy/protocol purported by the FDA and the WHO. Semi-retired, Kay is pleased to be spending great time with her family, focusing on her own well-being, spending time out of doors as much as possible, either walking on the Maine coast, hiking in the Whites or snowshoeing and cross country skiing wherever the snow falls. A consummate learner, she spends a bit of time to better understand the possible correlation between environmental changes, epidemiology and the impact on aspects of human well-being (mental, psychological, physical and spiritual).

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                            Philip Zaeder
                            Philip Zaeder

                            Advisor to the Academy

                            • B.A., Yale College
                            • M. Div., Yale Divinity School
                            Read Bio

                            Philip has served the field of education for many years, as chaplain and English teacher at the Taft School (1962–1969); associate university chaplain at Yale (1969–1978); and Protestant chaplain, English teacher, and dean of faculty at Phillips Academy in Andover, MA (1978–2000). Philip lives in Milton, NH, on a colonial farmstead and engages in tree farming and stone-wall building, among his other hobbies.

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                            Frank Anthony
                            Frank Anthony

                            Academy Advisor

                            • BA, Psychology, Amherst College
                            Read Bio

                            Frank knows first hand what the experience of Shortridge Academy is like as a parent, since his daughter is a successful graduate. While talking about his role, Frank said, “As I meet with families who are visiting Shortridge, I recall how confusing and isolating the wilderness and next school process was for us as a family. While they are well advised by professional educational consultants and wilderness therapists, it can be a bewildering process that is usually uncharted territory. But the consistent theme is that the parents we work with are devoted to doing the best they can for their children, and I try to honor that commitment with an open approach to helping them decide whether Shortridge is the best fit for them.”

                            Prior to an early retirement, Frank worked in the telecommunications/cable TV industry, serving in senior executive roles with privately held firms that ultimately merged with major public companies including Comcast and Microsoft. He devotes much of his time to Camp Agawam in Maine, which has long embraced many of the same principles of positive youth development and character growth that underpin the Shortridge philosophy and theory of change. Frank has been a member of our marketing committee since 2009 and actively participates in the life of our school, including serving as lifeguard for our Surfing Club. He lives with his wife and daughter on the NH seacoast.

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