New Hires Bring Diverse Experience to Key Positions

Here’s a sampling of new faculty and staff who have joined MMA in 2020.

Richard Rosen
Vice President for Financial & Institutional Services

Rosen’s responsibilities include serving as Chief Financial Officer and overseeing Information Technology, Fiscal Operations, Facilities & Campus Safety, Human Resources, and Conference Services departments. He previously was Commissioner of the Maine Department of Administrative & Financial Services.

Dr. Keith Williamson
Vice President for Academic Affairs

Williamson is currently Dean of the School of Business and Technology at Fitchburg State University. His post with MMA begins in January. He brings more than 17 years of academic leadership and teaching experience in the field of engineering and a 13-year career as a mechanical engineer, electronics engineer, and project manager for the U.S. Navy.

Dr. Justin M. Pratt
Assistant Professor of Chemistry

Pratt’s responsibilities include teaching a variety of chemistry courses and coordinating related laboratory experiences. Prior to joining the faculty at MMA, he worked at the University of South Florida with inorganic chemistry faculty from across the country.

Capt. Bryce Potter
Director of Career Services and Cooperative Education

Potter leads Career Services in efforts to connect students with industry, including: hands-on field experiences, such as co-ops, internships, and commercial shipping. He also coordinates the Annual Career Fair, held virtually this year. Potter provides professionalism training and coaching for students. He most recently worked as maritime science faculty and training vessel captain for Clatsop Community College. He graduated from MMA in 2006.

Elliot Rappaport
Assistant Professor of Marine Transportation

Rappaport teaches courses in Small Craft Construction, Marine Communications, and Lifeboat Competencies. He has spent most of his career in sail training and on oceanographic research vessels, most recently as a captain with SEA Education Association. He was captain of the schooner Bowdoin during her first decade as an Academy training vessel.

Eric Terrill
Women’s Soccer Coach/Resident Director

Terrill is responsible for coaching, organizing, administering, and recruiting for the women’s soccer program to be successful academically and athletically. He works as Resident Director in the evenings, weekends, and on call. He was the head women’s soccer coach at Division 1, Charleston Southern University for 25 years.

Elizabeth Allaby
Admissions Counselor

Allaby works directly with prospective students, their families, and high school guidance counselors. She is in constant communication with prospective students throughout the entire college search journey and application process.

Kate Corwin
Welcome Center Receptionist

Corwin attends to the front desk in Leavitt, welcomes visitors, and answers MMA’s general phone line. She also assists the College Relations team with administrative tasks. Kate previously worked at athenahealth, Inc. out of Belfast, a cloud-based electronic medical record and billing company.

Rory Hersom
Assistant Professor of Engineering

Hersom teaches Steam Turbines, Steam Power Systems & Power Equipment Lab He graduated from MMA in 1988 and was hired by General Electric to participate in their Field Engineering Program. He spent more than 32 years working in the electrical generation industry in many different capacities. His background is in steam and gas turbines, generator maintenance, and repair.

Finn Welch
Small Craft Master, Master on RV Friendship

Welch is responsible for the maintenance and safe operation of the vessel used by Ocean Studies and operating the research equipment aboard. As a small craft master he also has the opportunity to operate almost every vessel on the MMA waterfront, and assist in the instruction of labs such as Ship handling and Tug and Barge. He worked previously on a tugboat in Alaska for Vitus Marine as a chief mate. Welch graduated from MMA in 2013.

Dan Flaherty
1st Assistant Engineer, TS State of Maine

Flaherty’s job responsibilities include maintenance and operation of the ship as well as training students. Previously, he was Chief Engineer for Uncruise Adventures. He worked on small passenger ships that toured Panama, Costa Rica, and South East Alaska. “The most interesting thing about working at MMA is teaching the students,” he says. “I am new to the job but so far I have enjoyed sharing my knowledge and doing my best to answer their questions.”

Dr. Hillary VanSpronsen
Assistant Professor of Mathematics

VanSpronsen’s primary teaching responsibilities include mathematics courses such as precalculus and calculus, other responsibilities include service and scholarship. Previously, VanSpronsen was an instructor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks where she worked remotely teaching asynchronous mathematics courses from Hawaii. She taught here for 10 years, both in person at first and then fully remote. “I have found the transition to a maritime academy to be full of learning opportunities for me,” The sense of community here is much stronger than anywhere I have taught before.”

Dr. Kerry A. Whittaker
Visiting Sawyer Professor, Corning School of Ocean Studies

Whittaker teaches courses in ocean studies and environmental science, and contributes to curriculum design and teaching for MMA’s new Coastal and Marine Environmental Science Major. Prior to joining MMA, she was an Assistant Professor of Oceanography at Sea Education Association (SEA) and Chief Scientist for multiple SEA Semester programs in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Whittaker’s research focuses on the ecological, physical, and evolutionary processes that generate and maintain diversity in the ocean, particularly among marine microbes.

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