University of Maine partners with Thornton Academy to enhance STEM education

SACO – University of Maine College of Engineering’s Dean Dana Humphrey recently announced that the University had agreed to a first-in-the-state partnership with the Saco-based Thornton Academy.

“After reviewing Thornton Academy’s rigorous four-year curriculum in Science-Technology-Engineering-Math, we endorse their model program and agree to admit qualified, graduating students from Thornton Academy into the College of Engineering with sophomore standing,” said Humphrey. “This will not only encourage students to consider how the State of Maine is valuing the skills of engineering design and innovation, but also save a whole year of tuition for those participating families. We are pleased to enter into this partnership with Thornton Academy.”

The partnership agreement was signed by the University of Maine President Paul W. Ferguson and by Thornton Academy Headmaster Rene M. Menard. Qualifying students who are eligible for admission to the University’s Engineering College will enter with advanced admissions standing, with a credit equivalency up to the first year of the engineering program.

This is a ground-breaking partnership – the first of its kind in the State – in which the University of Maine and Thornton Academy have collaborated to extend opportunities for Maine students in the area of STEM education,” said Headmaster Menard. “We are pleased to have worked with the University to design this program and are honored to receive their endorsement. Today’s announcement is just the first of a series of curricular initiatives representing Thornton Academy’s commitment to STEM education.  My intent, and that of Thornton’s trustees, is to build on what we learn from leaders in education, government and business to provide our students with the kinds of skills and opportunities that will allow them to live and work here in Maine after high school and college. We reaffirm Thornton Academy’s dedication to offering a broad and rigorous curriculum, one that serves a diverse range of students – from those who will attend a four-year college to those who choose to enter the work force directly upon graduation from high school, and we welcome those local and regional businesses who are partnering with us in preparing these students.”