Mount Snow Academy
A Hot Party on a Cold Night
… a night of fabulous finger foods, festivities and frolic
Sponsored in part by
Mount Snow Academy Annual Benefit 2015
A Hot Party on a Cold Night
7:00 – 8:30 Hors D‘Oeuvres and Open Bar
7:00 – 9:40 Silent Auction
7:30 Live Music and Dancing All Night by
the “Mike Cusato Band”
8:30 – 9:30 Street Vendor Food
“Top of the Hill Grill”
9:00 Live Auction
10:00 Checkout Opens
Tonight’s Live Auction Items .............................................. 4
Thank You to Our Supporters ........................................... 7
Welcome from our Chair ................................................. 10
MSA Board of Directors .................................................... 11
Welcome from Our Head of School .............................. 13
About the Academy ............................................................ 15
About the Faculty ................................................................ 16
Our Faculty ........................................................................... 17
About the Coaches ............................................................ 21
Life at the A-House ............................................................. 23
About the Student-Athletes .............................................. 24
2014-2015 Students ............................................................ 27
Mount Snow Academy: How it all works ...................... 39
February 28, 2015 Mount Snow Ski Club
Mount Snow Academy • Training Center • 25 Mount Snow Road • West Dover, VT 05356
802-464-1100 ext 4667 or 4521 • www.mountsnowacademy.org
“One of A Kind: Live Auction Items”
(Items are subject to change. Terms and conditions may apply.)
One-Year introductory membership for skiing and
golfing at The Hermitage Club in Vermont
The primary member will receive unlimited access to the Haystack
Alpine Mountain for skiing. Each member will also receive 100
complimentary ski passes for family and guests. The primary
member and immediate family members will receive unlimited
golfing at the Hermitage Golf Club. In addition, they will be given 10
complimentary rounds of golf for extended family and guests.
Finally the member will receive additional exclusive discounts
(including dining, accommodations, gift shop, cross country ski and
snowshoe trails, ice skating rink, tubing hill, etc.) and access to
other recreational activities on the grounds. Reserve $4000.
Offer only valid for One year membership. Membership is Non-
Transferrable. Activation Date is same day as auction.
-Donated by The Hermitage Club, Jim and Donna Barnes
Relax at a Waterfront Home in Westerly, RI
Enjoy a week at a waterfront home in beautiful Westerly, Rhode
Island during September or October, 2015. Located on Winnapaug
Pond (salt pond which has ocean access), you can spend the day
swimming, kayaking, clamming and fishing right out of the back yard!
Here’s your chance to relax alone or spend time as a family
enjoying the ocean breezes and the beautiful fall weather; the ocean
is just one mile away. Home is a two-bedroom (sleeps 6), one
bathroom home (plus enclosed outdoor shower) with a fully
equipped kitchen; washer/dryer is accessible in the basement.
Home has all the comforts of home as well as kayaks, gas grill,
picnic table, WiFi, and Cable/TV. All you have to do is bring sheets
and towels; blankets and pillows, etc. are provided. No pets and no
smoking please. Distances from some cities: Watch Hill, RI (10
min.), Newport, RI (40 min.), Stonington and Mystic, CT (20 min.),
Boston, MA (90 min.). “Valued at $2000”
-Donated by Patti and Rich Harper, MSA Parents
Team USA jacket worn by a member of the United States
ski team at the 2014 Olympic games held in Sochi, Russia.
Size: Men's Large. Priceless
-Donated by Erik Schlopy and the Cooperstone Family
Jets vs. Patriots … 2015 season
Football fan? You’ll love this auction item! Four tickets to a
Jets/Patriots game during the 2015 season. You’ll have access to
the Chase Club and two premium parking passes … doesn’t get
much better than that! “Valued at $1230”
-Donated by Shawn and Laura Byron
Billy Joel LIVE in concert at Madison Square
IMAGINE THIS! Four incredible tickets to see Billy Joel in concert
on Saturday night June 20, 2015. You’ll be able to watch the
concert from a luxury suite stocked all night with food and drink.
“Valued at $3000”
-Donated by Tom & Cara O’Hara, MSA Parents
Cape Cod Fall Escape
Spend a week (between Sept. 17 and Oct. 27) at the Sullivan family
retreat in Harwichport, MA. Enjoy the salt air, take long walks on
the beach, and splash in the ocean in this wonderfully restored
1800’s home built for family, parties, and fun. This seven bedroom
cape is the perfect place to extend the summer and relax after the
crowds have gone home. “Valued at $2,500”
-Donated by Jim & Lynne Sullivan
Olympic experience in Park City, Utah
Enjoy a 4 night stay in a new two bedroom condominium in
Newpark Terrace at Redstone, Park City with views of Canyons,
PCMR, and Deer Valley. This fabulous package includes two tickets
for a thrilling ride down the Olympic bobsled run …
whoosh! Included in this wonderful offering are lift tickets for two
people for three days of skiing. Have you ever wanted to ski with
an Olympian? Well, you can! Spend one day on the mountain at
Deer Valley with three-time U. S. Olympian Erik Schlopy; half day
free ski, half day ski in/ski out luxury property tour. Dates need to
be set at least 90 days in advance. “Estimated value: $7500”
-Donated by Erik Schlopy and the Cooperstone Family
Yankee tickets vs. Angels, Tigers or Red Sox!!
CHOICE OF GAME: Four tickets to Yankee Stadium either
Saturday, June 6 th vs. Angels, Saturday, June 20 th vs. Tigers or
Wednesday, August 5 th vs. Red Sox. MVP Club seats are in Section
123, Row 20; parking pass included. Enjoy waitress service with
complimentary soft drinks & snacks as well. You’ll have a ball!
“Valued at $2000”
- Donated by Tom & Cara O’Hara, MSA Parents
5 Nights in a fabulous Upper West Side NYC
apartment (Dec. 26 – 31, 2015)
4 Bedroom (1King, 1Queen, 1Twin, 1Twin), 2 Bath, recently
renovated apartment on Riverside Drive in Manhattan has all the
charm of pre-war architecture and all the conveniences of modern
life. Living room and two bedrooms overlook Riverside Park. Steps
away from Columbia University and the #1 subway. Times Square
is 25 minutes by subway, American Museum of Natural History 20
minutes by subway, the Metropolitan Museum of Art 45 minutes by
bus. $200 cleaning fee and $500 returnable security deposit are
extra. “Valued at $5000”
- Donated by Emlyn and Ivana Hughes, MSA Parents
Special thanks to all the
MSA teachers, staff, and
coaches for their hard
work and dedication!
We’d like to thank our Friends and Sponsors!
Gold Medalists ($5,000 and over)
The Cooperstone family
The Hermitage Club
Ivana and Emlyn Hughes
Mount Snow/Peak Resorts
Mount Snow Ski Club
Cara and Tom O'Hara
Erik Schlopy, Olympian
Silver Medalists ($1,500 - $4,999)
Patti and Rich Harper
Carol H. Massoni
Lynne and Jim Sullivan
Bronze Medalists ($500 - $1,499)
Jane Alexander and Graham Hill
Laura and Shawn Byron
Camp Gone To The Dogs
Cathy Cunliffe and David Lyons
Phyllis and Artie Herrmann
Lori McKay and Rick Chopper
Amy and Matt Neal
Friends of the Mount Snow Academy (up to $500)
Anchor Seafood House & Grille
Anderson Surf Camps
Peter Angus for Tito's Handmade Vodka
Suzie and Bill Canning
Tim and Jenny Chiang
Cottages & Gardens Publications
Deerfield Valley Dental Care, Drs. Ruhl and
Dick's Sporting Goods
Dot's of Dover
Dover Forge Restaurant
Duncan Cable TV Service, Cliff Duncan
Good Body Products
Green Mountain Self-Storage LLC
Jim McGrath Gallery and Studio
Michelle and Donald Knuth
La Toscanella Pizzeria
Live 2 Shred
Michele's Nail Spa
Ellen & Joseph Nichols
Bob and Mary Outtrim
Physical Therapy Plus LLC
Rideout's Lodge and Cabins
River Valley Market
Ieke and Mark Scully
Shelly and Len Sherman
SlacKamp, Sunny Cyr
Snow Mountain Market
The Last Chair
The Original Golf School
The Sanctuary: The Art of Nancy Noel
The Village Roost Café and Marketplace
Timber Creek Condo Owner's Association
Two Tannery Road
Vermont Teddy Bear
Zoar Adventure Center
Welcome from our Chair
Dear Parents and Friends,
Thank you for supporting MSA by joining us for
our 2015 benefit!
I especially thank MSA Director Lynne Sullivan
for her leadership and devotion to MSA in the
classroom and on the mountain. Lynne pushes
for excellence from her student/athletes. She
understands that training the mind and body
results in both athletic and academic
My gratitude also extends to the MSA coaching
staff who teach our children more than skiing
and snowboarding. They help them set goals
and achieve them. They celebrate the stepping
stones as well as the podium finishes. They
instill a work ethic that becomes a part of their
lives. Thank you MSA coaches!
The MSA teachers consistently deliver
outstanding results, through a deep devotion to
their students. The one to one teaching
provides a great learning atmosphere and an
opportunity to stretch and challenge them in a
personalized way. This opportunity is made
possible through their hard work and
dedication. Thank you MSA teachers!
There have been many hours and great effort
devoted to making this night a success. I would
like to thank the MSA staff, MSA board
members and the parent volunteers; Amy Neal,
Jane Alexander, Paula Smoller, Phyllis Herrmann
and Jennifer Lohnes. A special thank you to
Tamara Allen and Anne Lipkvich for all of their
devotion, energy and behind the scenes efforts.
We couldn’t do this without you!
I would also like to thank all of the business
owners who donated to our event by placing an
ad or donating an item or service. Please
support them in return with your business.
When shopping at their locations please
mention that you saw their ad in our journal.
A special thank you to Mount Snow/Peak
Resorts and the Hermitage Club for their
commitment to providing the best training
terrain in the area.
Enjoy this wonderful evening and thank you for
supporting Mount Snow Academy!
2015 MSA Benefit Committee Chair
Mount Snow Academy Board of Directors
Harry Byron, Wilmington, VT
From Shawn Byron
Shawn Byron, Chairman, Westfield, NJ
Elliot Cooperstone, Westport, CT
Heather DeLaurentis, Haddam, CT
Bob DiLeo, Treasurer, Wilmington, VT
Avery Fluck-Fero, Rochester, NY
Jay Fluck, Providence, RI
Ryan North, West Dover, VT
Rick Norton, Islip, NY
Lynne Sullivan, Head of School, Jacksonville, VT
Steven Wolff, Fairfield, CT
As we approach the end of the 2015 winter season, I’m happy to report that MSA continues to thrive as one of
Vermont’s preeminent winter sports academies. The goal of MSA has always been to give our student athletes
an environment that allows them to explore the boundaries of their snow skills while carrying over that
commitment and dedication to the classroom and community. Their performance on the hill and in the
classroom has been exemplary this year. All of this would not be possible without all the hard work and
dedication by Lynne, her staff, and MSA coaches. They provide valuable inspiration and on-hill examples for the
MSA student athletes and the rest of the Competition Programs.
We now need to move ahead and think about our future. Over the past 35 years MSA has served more than
900 student athletes who sought to develop their on-hill skills while maintaining enrollment with their home
schools. This dedication and desire has produced Olympic athletes, collegiate racers, professional competitors,
and successful students who have excelled in finance, science, technology, education, and the arts. To continue
this success, and build on MSA’s platform, we will require the support from many of you. Thank you again for
your generosity, especially as we embark upon the effort to position MSA for the future. In our evolving efforts,
we hope to be able to make you proud and also to serve and capture the hearts of new generations of Mount
Snow Academy families and supporters.
Good Luck to the Class of
Thanks to Lynne and the staff
for making Ryan’s first year
at MSA so memorable !
Rich and Pat Funke
From the Head of School
Hello to All Who Are Here to Support Mount Snow Academy,
Three years ago the MSA Board asked me how long I would continue to “man the
helm” of Mount Snow Academy. Very airily I answered “five more years”, thinking
at the time that it was in the far distant future. We are now in the middle of year
three---time flies when one is busy and fully engaged. Exciting things are
happening. As I write this, a prospectus is being created to interest “believers” in
MSA to invest in its future. In a wish list power point that I was asked to complete
earlier this year, the overwhelming need was “space”. Clearly the administrative
staff would benefit from a director of fundraising and alumni and public relations.
The 6 member coaching staff is housed in an 11 by 12 foot room. At minimum
each discipline should have its own office. A certified athletic trainer should be on
staff. Teachers need space to store their materials and literally to have room to
hang their coats. To expand beyond 25-30 students and maintain the quality program that is Mount Snow
Academy, cannot happen in the space we have. The Mount Snow Ski Club has been totally supportive in
allowing MSA to have almost total “run” of its building during the week. Last Sunday’s snow storm when many
Club members were snowed in and were “forced” to spend an extra day skiing, re-enforced the fact that space
is at a premium. Nobody disagrees with these facts. We just don’t have a place for any new people to sit.
What the staff of Mount Snow Academy has accomplished in these confines is truly amazing. This speaks to
their belief in the school as well as to their dedication and commitment to young people.
To give you a brief overview of the caliber of the MSA staff, I present the following statistics:
Teaching staff 100% BA
13% courses toward PhD
Coaching staff all working on their Level III USSA certification
When I agreed to take the job to teach French I, Latin (if necessary), and English 35 years ago at the newly
revamped MSA, the office and training facility were housed in what was called the Pumpkin Patch, the vacated
24x24 foot child care cabin. That was a step up from the parking lot trailer where the program previously was
housed. The three resident students lived in the former Handle House and classes were held there. Oh, the
stories I could tell---about a week before students were about to arrive, the head coach called and asked if I
could take over a little admin work because the person who was going to do that had just accepted another
position. If I could take care of those “things”, he would pay me $20 a week more. And that’s how we began.
So many good things have happened since then---this year only we have established a Jump Start Program and
we have become corporate members of The Hermitage Club. This membership allows us to use their state of
the art fitness facility and the alpine racers routinely train there Friday-Sunday.
We moved from the Pumpkin Patch to the original Ski Club building, to the new addition, and now it’s time to
move again. Please help with this new endeavor by biding the highest ever. As always, I thank you for coming, I
urge you to visit us, and I hope you have a really fun time tonight.
Head of School
Calvin Lyons ...
... sporting the new MSA sweatshirt!
About the Academy
Fostering reliable independence through individual attention and community support.
An athlete in an individual sport, while counting on coaches and teammates for guidance and support, needs to
perform independently, and needs to be the primary director of her or his own progress. The ability to direct
one’s own learning is equally important in the academic and personal realms, where each person not only grows
and competes, but also needs to be relied upon as a teammate, coworker, partner, friend, etcetera. Mount Snow
Academy is organized to foster each student’s independence and reliability through individual attention and
Our uniquely individualized system of instruction challenges students to direct their own learning, because each
student takes a different class, from a different teacher, at a different school. They are ultimately responsible for
returning to their school and rejoining a class without missing a step. Each student also has a different set of
challenges and strengths on the snow, as well. The work they do here—setting goals, managing their time, taking
advantage of their own strengths, and working to improve on personal challenges—usually results in a better
relationship with themselves as students and athletes, and improved performance.
The drive toward self-reliance is balanced with an environment that values and encourages active cooperation,
caring and mutual support among students and staff. MSA teachers and coaches work together to help each
student-athlete find that fine and very individual balance, which combines a focused academic life with rigorous
training and competition expectations.
MSA’s mission is to offer a program that encourages students to become life-long learners, responsible decisionmakers,
and capable, contributing members of society, while helping them develop as competitive snow sport
athletes. We expect our students to act with integrity as they become reliably independent in their intellectual,
personal, and athletic growth.
About the Faculty
Teaching at Mount Snow Academy is a special kind of
experience, and it has brought together a special
group of educators. The academic model is a one-toone
system, making each class session an interactive
dialog between student and teacher. Both
participants must be intellectually present and
engaged. There is, after all, no place to hide.
To carry out this teaching program, MSA has built up
a faculty of seasoned and caring instructors who are
able to effectively share their academic passions with
their students. Most have advanced degrees, and all
have a real enthusiasm for encouraging and challenging
their students. Excellence and creativity are valued
here. The opportunity to work with motivated
students in a stimulating and collegial environment brings teachers back year after year to share their expertise.
Although numbers and lists can’t begin to capture the ambiance, a few facts about the faculty as a whole give a
sense of the richness of knowledge and experience that students can expect to encounter at MSA. At present,
the Academy has 25 academic faculty. Most (68%) hold one or more degrees beyond the Bachelor’s level. They
are an intellectually active and community-minded group. Amongst them they have, in the last five years,
participated in and led conferences and seminars, taught or taken college courses, exhibited art, published
poetry or prose, judged writing and photography contests, started or built up small businesses, and completed
additional degrees and certifications. Virtually all are involved in community service or volunteer work – serving
on non-profit boards, leading public discussions, serving on restorative justice and diversion boards, contributing
their time to museums, hospitals and public school enrichment programs. They play music in rock bands,
bluegrass bands, classical orchestras, and at nursing homes. In addition, at least half of the faculty are serious
enthusiasts or competitors in snow sports, while others are involved in canoeing and kayaking, ice hockey,
rowing, rock climbing, mountaineering and horseback riding. In short, the faculty is made up of interested and
interesting people who exhibit and model for their students, a life of intellectual engagement and community
With the support of this quality faculty, Mount Snow Academy students have assembled a tradition of solid
academic accomplishment and success over the last thirty-five years.
2011 VBA Social Media, Dover, VT
1995 PR Course BCC Boston, MA
1990 B.S. Marketing, SNH University, Manchester,
1978 New York University, New York, NY
Courses toward a PhD in Math and Physics
1973 M.S. Lehigh University, Economics
1971 B.A. Lehigh University, Arts/Engineering
B.A. Mathematics with a concentration in Statistics,
Rowan University, NJ
1985-1988, School of the Museum of Fine Arts,
Boston, MA Continuing Ed
1973-1984, Massachusetts College of Art, Boston,
MA Continuing Ed 1970-1971,
M.A. (Art Education), University of Massachusetts,
1967-1970 B.F.A. University of Massachusetts,
B.A., Psychology, Lyndon State College, VT
Mediation Certificate, Woodbury College,
1972- 30+hours advanced coursework in
education, science, and administration
1967 B.S. Elementary Education, Springfield College
M.A. Deaf Education, Eastern Michigan University
M.A. English, The University of Michigan
B.A. Education, English, Simmons College
1973 M.A. Education, Ann Arbor, Michigan
1958 Universidad de las Americas, Spanish, Mexico
1955-1956 United States Armed Forces
1954 B.A. Classical Language, Xavier University,
1962-1963 PhD Program in Analysis of Complex
Variables (Topology), State University of New York
at Buffalo, Graduate Teaching Fellowship
1961 B.A. Mathematics major, Physics minor, State
University of New York at Buffalo
1959 B.S. Science Education, State University of
New York at Buffalo
Academic Grant for Sculpting at Johnson Atelier
Graduate study in Higher Education Policy,
University of Massachusetts at Amherst
M.A. Lesley University, Interdisciplinary Studies
Graduate study in Anthropology and Geography,
University of Texas at Austin
B.A. History, Bates College, ME
M.A. Great Books, St. Johns College, Annapolis, MD
B.A. English, University of Massachusetts at Boston
1985, B.S. Business, concentration in Marketing,
Sacred Heart University, Fairfield, CT
1998 Masters/Fine Arts Writing, Goddard College,
1993 B.A., Literature, Summa Cum Laude, Southern
Vermont College, Bennington, VT
1992 Intense Learning Program Literature &
Writing. Oxford University, Oxford, England
Universidad Computense Madrid (Spain), Master’s
degree in linguistics of Spanish language
Universidad Nacional Bogotá (Colombia),
Bachelor’s degree in Spanish literature
Ècole Polytechnique Paris (France), Baccalaurat de
Pursuing Master’s Degree in
Bilingual/ESL/Multicultural Education with a Teacher
Licensure, University of Massachusetts - Amherst
TEFL Certificate, University of Chiang Mai, Thailand
B.A. English, University of Massachusetts - Amherst
2013 M.S., Environmental Studies - Conservation
Biology (upon completion of Master's thesis),
Antioch University New England, Keene, NH
1973 B.S., Business, minor mathematics, Worcester
Polytechnic Institute (WPI), Worcester, MA
2003 M.Ed. Vermont College of Union Institute and
University, Montpelier, VT
1984 B.M., Manhattan School of Music, New York,
Ph.D., Geological Sciences, Columbia University,
New York, NY
M.Phil., Geological Sciences, Columbia University
M.S., Geology, University of Wyoming, Laramie,
B.S., Geology, Bates College, Lewiston, ME
Hallmark Institute of Photography, Turners Falls,
M.A.T., English, Keene State College, NH
B.A., Social Relations, Windham College, Putney, VT
St. Pierre, Lindsay
Doctorate in Environmental Studies, Antioch Univ.
New England, Keene, NH (candidate 2018)
M.S., Environmental Studies, Conservation Biology,
Antioch Univ., Keene, NH (candidate 2015)
2008 Masters of Education, Massachusetts College
of Liberal Arts, North Adams, MA
2002 Bachelor of Science, Environmental Science,
Simmons College, Boston, MA
Ph.D., French, University of Massachusetts at
M.A., French, University of Missouri, Columbia
B.A., French, Smith College
Graduate study, University of Massachusetts at
B.A. English, Regis College, Weston, MA
M.A. English, University of Virginia, Charlottesville,
A.B. English (Honors) and Theatre, Smith College,
M.S., Aeronautical Engineering, Rensselaer
M.S., Management/Business Administration,
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Professional Engineer (PE) certification
B.S., Aeronautical Engineering, Rensselaer
About the Coaches
Ben Sullivan, Head Alpine Coach
As a young ski racer, Ben attended the weekend Competition Program at Mount
Snow. Later, at Deerfield Academy, he balanced Eastern Cup racing under the tutelage
of former Canadian Ski Team coach Jean Francois (JF) Belanger with interscholastic
racing. He trained for a post-graduate year at MSA before joining the Middlebury
College Ski Team. He interned under former French Ski Team member Isabelle Fabre,
became assistant head coach at Mount Snow Academy, and assumed the Head Coach
position in 2005. At MSA, Ben has coached beginners through Eastern Junior 3
Olympic champions, as well as competitors at the Tropheo Topolino, the Whistler
Cup, and the British National Championships in Meribel, France. Off-season Ben has
directed MSA’s training camp at El Colorado, Chile. He also directs the Stone Horse
Yacht Club’s sailing program on Cape Cod, teaching children aged seven through high
school and directing a staff of ten college students.
Andrew Norton, Alpine Coach
Andrew began his ski racing career in the weekend Competition Program at Mount
Snow. He attended MSA as an Eastern Cup racer. He, too, trained under former
Canadian Ski Teach coach JF Belanger and former French Ski Team members Sam
Bertacchi and Isabelle Fabre. Andrew was a member of the Colby-Sawyer Ski Team,
where he earned a place at the USCSA Nationals in each of his collegiate years. Since
becoming an Alpine Coach at MSA, Andrew, too, has helped students earn spots at
the Whistler Cup, Topolino, the Junior 3 Olympics, and Eastern Cup races. He was
the coach for the newly-initiated CanAm race for J4 athletes, and has directed MSAsponsored
training camps in Chile and in Colorado as well as private coaching in New
Zealand and Australia. Andrew is an avid surfer, and continues to travel the world
when he is not coaching.
Steve Kwasniewski, Head Snowboard Coach
Steve has been coaching at the Academy since snowboarding became a part of its
snow sport curriculum in 1998. He has coached athletes in major snowboard
competitions including X-Games, Grand Prix, U.S. Open, World Cup, and USASA
Nationals. Snowboarding has taken Steve from Switzerland to Canada and across the
United States. He has trained national champions, including Olympic gold medalist
Kelly Clark. Steve is accredited by USSA as a coach, official, and trainer. A former
competitor, his true satisfaction comes from working with young athletes to help
them achieve their dreams.
Tommy Burke, Snowboard Coach
Tommy started coaching/instructing snowboarding at Mount Snow in 2002. He
worked with all levels of riders from instructing first timers to coaching athletes
through their Slope Style runs at the US Open. He has been a coach for the weekend
programs at Mount Snow and also has experience as a private coach. In addition,
Tommy helped build an elite program and has overseen multiple programs as head
snowboard coach of Sierra at Tahoe. Tommy joined Mount Snow Academy as a
snowboard coach in 2014. He currently holds the following accreditations: Level II
AASA certification, Level 300 USASA coach and Level A judge. Over the course of
numerous summers, he was a skateboarding instructor at Woodward. Tommy is also
passionate about nutrition; he interns at organic farms in the summertime. When he is
not working as a volunteer on an organic farm, you will find Tommy out surfing.
Robby Sullivan, Head Freeski Coach
Robby joined MSA with a lifetime of experience as a competitive skier and ultimately a
coach. Robby was raised in New Hampshire near his home mountain (Attitash).
After competing in alpine and moguls, Robby found his passion in freeskiing
(slopestyle, big air, and halfpipe events). Shortly after, Robby was asked to ride for
the Attitash freeride team (similar to the C team here at Mount Snow). After
competing at a high level, Robby returned to his home mountain to begin coaching.
Robby has since been coaching for nine years, working for Cranmore’s and Attitash's
weekend programs and then full time at Carrabassett Valley Academy. His experience
ranges from the fundamental basics of USASA athletes to AFP (Association of
Freeskiing Professionals) elite athletes and world cup level athletes. Robby continues
to build his wealth of knowledge as a coach and follows his passion for freeskiing. He
looks forward to a long a successful career here at MSA.
Joe Vanacore, Freeski Coach
In 2013, Joe Vanacore joined Mount Snow Academy as a freeski coach. Joe spent his
early years in the Catskill Mountain town of Shokan, New York. With a ski instructor
for a father, it’s not surprising that he began skiing shortly after he began walking. His
childhood career included attending a weekend development program at his local
mountain, Belleayre. Ski racing throughout high school included the New York State
Scholastic Championships, and a gradual shift in interest from alpine racing to freestyle
skiing. After high school, Joe went on to coach freestyle, first at Belleayre, then with
the freestyle development program at Mount Snow, and now with the Academy. In
addition, Joe is working toward his degree in environmental science.
Life at the A-House
It’s a short walk from the Training Center to the A-
House, a home-away-from home for MSA students.
For many, the A-House provides their first
experience with dorm living. Alpine coach Andrew
Norton and his wife, Deby Pessy, are the house
parents. Working in close cooperation with Head of
School Lynne Sullivan, Andrew and Deby provide
guidance, support, and structure for the thirteen to
fifteen student athletes who reside there over the
course of the season.
Whether the need is for encouragement for an
athlete nursing an injury, or a no-nonsense approach
to the mandated study time, or someone to talk to
about the travails of being a teen, Andrew and Deby make the A-House a home where the students learn selfsufficiency
as well as the cooperation that’s necessary in a group living environment.
A day usually starts with breakfast and either Qi Gong or warm-up runs. (Qi Gong is an ancient Chinese health
care system that integrates physical postures, breathing techniques and focused intention. Tai Chi and King Fu
are some examples of different styles of Qi Gong.) One student said that Qi Gong really helps get her ready
for her day. For most in the A-House this is their first exposure to Qi Gong. Academic classes or training on
the hill follow. Dinner brings everyone back to the house for food and companionship. Most evenings include
mandated study as well as some time to hang out with housemates or communicate with family and friends at
home. Most residents enjoy having roommates, who are often from other snow sports disciplines.
Deby is the primary cook, Andrew is co-cook and sous chef, and the residents say its hard to choose a favorite
from among the delicious (and healthy) meals they dish up – including occasional specialities from Deby’s native
All of the students at the Academy develop close ties, but living together at the A-House adds a special
dimension to those bonds. Residents walk to and from the Training Center every day for training and/or classes.
They all study at the same time in the evenings, so kids may ask other kids for help with homework, like
If you go to the A-House, you will have to leave your
shoes down in the mudroom amongst the impressive
collection of boots of all sizes and types. You will see
that pride of place is evident. As an entire group, they
honor each other in a communal display of the
medals and trophies the student-athletes each earn on
We are proud of all our student-athletes, but there is
something special about this community within the
community. The A-House is its own unique brew of
cozy comfort, support, fun, and purposeful
About the Student-Athletes
MSA student athletes are unique. Not only do they develop
their individuality and personality, their athletic
determination rises to a completely new level. Each week at
the all-school Monday morning meeting, the athletes report
on their accomplishments from their weekend performances.
Whether they make it to the podium, accomplish a new
trick, or have a “character building run”, all present
appreciate the athletes’ efforts. As teachers will attest, “we
watch the students excel not only in their academics but on
the hill as well”.
MSA contributes to teaching students self-discipline, time
management, and the importance of setting and achieving
goals. Students move on from MSA having been exposed to
these attributes, (to perfect them is a life-long task). Most have exceeded the expectations of their set goals.
The logical next step is college (collegiate ski teams) and many have pursued bachelor and advanced degrees in
math, science, technology, languages, and the arts. Some still choose to follow their dreams based on a life-long
passion in the snow sports industry and have gone on to:
Represent companies (promoting their products)
Compete in X-Games/Grand Prix/Dew Tour
Partner in company ownerships
Coach, with some returning to Mount Snow and MSA
MSA athletes pursue a rigorous physical development program. Coaches design a wide variety of dry-land and
trampoline workout regimens that are incorporated into the daily on-hill training schedule. By implementing a
comprehensive goal achieving, integrated physical program, our staff instills in the student-athletes confidence
and self-assurance while building strong and healthy bodies and minds.
MSA athletes’ academic program is equally demanding and stimulating. These athletes not only delve deeply into
subject areas, but also develop skills in public speaking, team building, and self-discipline thus building individual
confidence. MSA recognizes academic achievement
with our “Academic Podium”. To reach the podium
students must earn A's and only one B+ is allowed.
Our student-athletes are congenial and vibrant. They
like each other; they motivate themselves and others;
they strive for MSA's success as much as for their
own individual triumphs. Here's to another year in
which our kids are as ambitious academically as they
are on the slopes, parks, and terrains.
West Dover, VT
Hi, I am Tess Beyer. I am 11 and in 6th grade. I used to go to school in North Salem,
New York, however, my family moved to West Dover, Vermont last year. This is my
second year at Mount Snow Academy as an Alpine Skier. Attending MSA is always so
much fun. The fact that you are able to ski 6 out of 7 days a week is awesome. Ben
and A1 are so much fun to ski with. It’s so much fun to train every day. Ben and A1
are always ready to get to work. They can always find a way to adapt to your working
technique. There is not much fooling around, only sometimes in dry land. It is always
fun when we go to a race because Ben or A1 always have a way to get you pumped
for your race. You get to the starting gate and have no worries in the world.
MSA is always great. You meet so many new people and make new friends. The one-on-one working technique
is so helpful. You can ask the teacher as many questions and you don’t have to rush the lesson. You always have
time to go back and break it down.
I love coming to MSA in the winter. I can always leave in the spring knowing that I benefited in both my skiing
and academics. Mount Snow Academy is so much fun and I wouldn’t want to spend my winter anywhere else.
Hi, my name is Ariana Welter. I live on Long Island and I’ve been skiing at Mount
Snow for 10 years and racing for 5 years. I’ve been at Mount Snow Academy since I
was 11 years old and I’ve been here for 3 years. Being at Mount Snow Academy has
really helped me become a better ski racer. The one on one teaching is great because
there are no everyday distractions of a normal class and it is easier to get all the work
done at the Academy. I hope to return to Mount Snow Academy next year because I
enjoy being in Vermont.
We are in awe of your tenacity, your
independent spirit and the intelligent,
amazing person you've become. Continue
to follow your dream. The sky's the limit.
With much love and admiration,
Mom and Dad
Thank you MSA!
I am in the 8th grade at Brookside School in Allendale, NJ. Ever since I was 2 years
old, I have been snowboarding and enjoying every day of it. When I started to
compete in USASA competitions, I heard about Mount Snow Academy. My goal here
at Mount Snow Academy is to excel in snowboarding, school, and life in general. I’ve
made good friends and I am learning a lot about myself. I hope to make this
experience as good as I can and hopefully come back next year. In the summer, I surf
at Manasquan, New Jersey and skateboard anywhere I can.
South Orange, NJ
My name is Jenni Hill, and this is my third year at Mount Snow Academy. I am 13
years old, and I am an alpine skier. When I'm not skiing, I'm in school, sleeping, eating,
on my phone, singing on the chairlift, watching Doctor Who, unicycling, swimming, or
trying to get my hat back (because I will never take it off).
I love skiing, except when the weather report says it feels like negative 23 degrees.
And on days that it's warm, training is so much fun. In all honesty, the coaches give me
the chance to prove what I can do. This year, I have already improved a lot, and I am
working to improve more. I plan to make it to state championships.
I'm pretty sure the best part of being at MSA this year is staying at the Academy House with Andrew and Deby.
I had known A for two years before, but had never expected Deby and him to be running the A- House. So far
it has been lots of fun. Qui-gon in the morning has been great, and it's nice to be able to always know what's
going on the next day in skiing.
New York, NY
Hello, my name is Inge Hughes, and I am 13 years old. I am from New York City, and
this is my first year at MSA. Last year I was racing with the Mount Snow Ski Club, and
I only got to train two days a week, so I have had a lot of fun being able to train six
days a week now. I am also staying at the A House, which I am really enjoying, and it
has given me the opportunity to make some great friendships.
In addition to skiing I enjoy ballet. Up until last year I did ballet very seriously. For
example, I have danced with the New York City Ballet and have trained at Gelsey
Kirkland Academy. Although I continue to enjoy ballet, I have decided to focus my
energy on skiing, which I also find exciting and exhilarating. In addition, MSA allows me to excel in my academics.
Whenever I can I also enjoy running, playing tennis, swimming, and traveling.
I am so thankful that I am able to be here, working with great coaches and teachers, who help me, work on
reaching my potential in skiing and academics.
Hi, my name is John Lohnes. I am a 14 year old freestyle skier and student at Mount
Snow Academy. I previously rode at Crotched Mountain, another mountain owned by
Peak Resorts. I have been skiing since I was three and have been hooked ever since. I
have been riding rails and boxes and catching big air since I was nine. The reason I
came to MSA was not only to reach my goals of becoming a professional skier, but
also to excel in the class room and one day graduate from college. MSA is not only a
terrific school for me to train in my sport but it is also an excellent atmosphere to
make new friends that I will grow through the sport with. I believe that I have
improved greatly with the little time I have been here and I am ecstatic to push myself farther in my discipline
Little Silver, NJ
Hello my name is Ryan O'Hara. This is my second year at Mount Snow Academy. I am
from Little Silver, New Jersey. I have been riding at Mount Snow since I was five years
old. I would come up on the weekends and ride then make the five-hour journey back
home. I heard of MSA from my brother, Thomas O'Hara, when he was trying to get
better at snowboarding. I wanted to follow in his footsteps because I was his little
brother. Coming to MSA is a great experience, and I wish I can come back next year.
Hi, I’m Emma Nesson, and I’m 14 years old. I reside in Newton, Massachusetts, and
this is my first year at Mount Snow Academy. I snowboard and have been enjoying my
time here, despite a recent injury that has prevented me from participating in the
program. Although I have missed much, I still have been amazed with MSA. The
coaches here are fantastic, and through building my rider confidence they have
enabled me to take my riding to the next level. I have accomplished more personal
goals in such a short period of time than I ever thought possible. Although
snowboarding can be a male-dominated sport, I have found through the support of my
coaches and teammates that I have a place in this community as a female rider and can really thrive.
I am also learning a lot through the one-on-one teaching system. I enjoy my classes because they are catered to
my learning style and interests. I love being able to spend half-days working hard in school so I can have time to
ride as much as I can. In my spare time, I enjoy watching Law and Order SVU on Netflix, long car rides, eating
pasta, patting my dog, and being with my family.
West Dover, VT
Hi, I’m Trace Beyer, I am fifteen years old, and I am an Alpine Ski Racer. I used to live
in North Salem, New York, but I recently moved to West Dover, Vermont. This is
my first year at Mount Snow Academy. I used to ski and have a lot of fun with the
weekend program, but I was not getting the race results I would have liked. I hoped
MSA could get me back to the top.
I race stock cars at Stafford Motor Speedway in the Dare Stock division during the
summer, and won 2014 Rookie of the Year. I guess you can say I like to go fast. I have
worked with the MSA coaches before, so I knew they could help me go as fast as I can
on skis. In just my first week on snow at MSA, I felt like my skiing had totally changed for the better. I have also
met many new friends on and off the slopes.
Not only do I think my skiing will benefit, but so will my academics. Working one on one with the teachers so
far has helped me understand my schoolwork better, since it is now easier to ask questions and ask for help.
When I am not in the racecourse or on the racetrack, I am either working on my car, on the lake fishing, or just
hanging out with my friends. Because even someone with the word “race” in their name likes to take things slow
every once in a while. I am very grateful to be attending MSA, and I am looking forward to the rest of my time
My name is Ian Bryce, 16 years old, a freeskier from Wilmington, Vermont. I learned
to ski at 3 years old from my dad and started freestyle skiing when I was 10 years old.
It all began when I decided to ski down the park one day to see what it was because I
didn’t quite understand freestyle skiing at the time. While skiing down though, I saw
people doing all sorts of tricks on the features and I immediately wanted to know how
to do tricks like the ones I saw. From that day on, I started skiing in the park more
often and eventually taught myself jump rail tricks and features. From the day I started
skiing park, I always dreamed that one day I could turn my passion into a career. My
friends who I ski with told me about Mount Snow Academy explaining that it is a high school for athletes that
want to improve their skills.
This is my first year at Mount Snow Academy, and I already can tell how much of an improvement I have made
academically and athletically. MSA is great because of the one-on-one tutoring and the coaching. The close
interaction between student and teacher helps me focus on my work so I can maintain good grades while skiing
six days a week. I hope that I can attend MSA through the rest of my high school years because I feel that MSA
is path that will lead to my dreams of becoming a professional skier.
Hi my name is Cole Chopper. I am a 15 year old sophomore and I snowboard. I have been
snowboarding since I was seven, but this is the first year I decided to do freestyle and hit
the terrain park. I was born and raised in a small town near Baltimore MD. My home
mountain is Liberty PA. I came here not only to progress in snowboarding but in school
and overall life skills. MSA is helping me achieve all of these things, from training hard on
the mountain, to working hard in school, to just simply making my lunch every day. The
teachers and coaches here are fantastic. They are well educated in their certain field and
know how to teach very well. I have progressed a great deal on and off the mountain. The
coaches can even act like a friend at times. If the park is icy or not fun, they will take us to
go and free ride. Overall I love MSA which is why I plan to come back next year.
Hello, I’m Ben Hojnoski. This is my first year attending Mount Snow Academy. I am
from Westminster, Massachusetts. I taught myself how to snowboard when I was five
years old. My local ski area is Wachusett Mountain, and before coming to MSA I used
to ride at Carinthia every weekend. My favorite days at Carinthia were the ones that
I took off from school since weekends were pretty busy. Now, riding Carinthia’s
amazing parks with no lift lines during the week is amazing.
I have always known about MSA, but didn’t think it was an option for me. My long
time Mount Snow friend Andy Ceriello has been attending MSA this season and he
told me how great it was. Luckily, I was able to take a couple of runs with the MSA athletes. I showed off my
best and Coach Kwaz gave me his card and said that I could really use some more training. I feel MSA will
advance my snowboarding and also my academic success.
My goals for this season are to learn some double back flip and double cork variations. I also want to go to
Nationals at Copper Mountain, Colorado. I have already won two competitions this year. MSA will help me
refine my skills to make me a better rider so I can excel in the future.
My name is Devin Mulgrew. I am from Oceanside, New York. I am 15 years old and
first snowboarded when I was 5 years old. I grew up snowboarding at Hunter
Mountain with my first coach Pablo. I participated in a weekend program for 3 years,
and quickly realized at competitions that most of the best riders went to an academy.
Pablo encouraged me to go to Mount Snow Academy to get better. Even though this
is only my first year at Mount Snow Academy, I feel welcomed by all the other kids at
the A-house (where the resident students live) and have a lot of fun on and off snow.
Hi, I’m Thomas Neal, I'm sixteen, in tenth grade and from Wallingford Connecticut.
This is my twelfth year skiing at Mount Snow and my fifth year attending the Academy.
When I first heard of Mount Snow Academy it seemed like a fantasy, a place where
you could ski six days a week while still getting a good education. My first year here I
was just a young lad who could barely make it down the mountain; over the years I
have grown and so have my skills. I learn more every day and am constantly improving
myself. During my time here I have made many great friends and watched them
graduate and do amazing things with their lives, like going to college or being the top
fifty in the world at skiing. The academics here are second to none, and the teachers really care about the
students and love to watch them improve. MSA really gives me the opportunity to do what I love while receiving
a good education.
For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Alexandra Welter, Alex for short. I’m 15
years old, a sophomore in high school, and this is my third year at MSA. I am an
alpine racer, and I’ve been competing for five years now; however, I have been skiing
for about 10 years. Due to my three years of experience, I’m pretty accustomed to
life here at MSA. Having stayed in the Academy House at times as well as with my
father and sister, you could say I’ve been around.
My first year here, my goal was to simply qualify for state championships and actually
do well. My goals have become more challenging and demanding as years passed,
making my current goal to not only podium at a race – but win, and to qualify for the
Junior Olympics as well as Nationals. Clearly, the latter will take a lot of hard work and dedication to get there,
and thanks to Ben Sullivan and Andrew Norton (A1), my goals are definitely within reach.
During the off season, I travel to Mt. Hood, OR in July and Copper Mountain, CO in November for more
training. However when I’m not training, I simply enjoy a wide range of outdoor activities. I go biking, hiking,
swimming, kayaking, rafting, among other various activities, but I always love to just hang out with my family and
friends, of course.
I’m excited to be at MSA this year because, although my goals are demanding, I believe that Ben and Andrew can
definitely help me reach them, as well as my teachers helping me in school. With the help and guidance of MSA
staff, I hope to one day reach my long term goals of getting a skiing scholarship into UVM and pursuing my
career as a neurologist.
Hello, I am Ryan Funke. This is my first year at MSA. I am from Fairport, New York.
My home Mountain is Bristol Mountain, and last year I only skied about three days a
week. I heard of MSA from a hometown friend, who was planning on coming but
couldn't. I knew that coming to MSA would push my abilities to the furthest possible. I
enjoy attending MSA because it allows me to not only focus on my academics but also
my skiing. MSA allows me to be riding one of the best parks on the East coast six days
a week. The one-on-one teaching allows me to focus more on my academics and
responsibilities. My goal in skiing is to push my abilities as far as possible both on and
off the mountain. My coaches help me on my technicality as well as learning new
tricks. The supportive environment at Mount Snow dramatically differs from my home school in many great
ways. I’m approaching this year with excitement and an open mind, hoping I may be selected to compete in
Hello, my name is Bradley Harper. I am from Simsbury, Connecticut, 16 years old, and
a snowboarder. This is my second year at MSA. I first strapped into a snowboard at
age 8 and fell in love with it immediately. I came to MSA because I wanted to
snowboard as much as I possibly could, while still focusing on academics. I’m happy I
came to MSA because it has allowed me to pursue my passion of snowboarding. I
enjoy snowboarding in all its forms, and have fun competing in a variety of disciplines.
One of my goals for this season is to finish with a podium spot at nationals.
During the off season, I like to skateboard, go cliff-jumping, and visit the beach in
Rhode Island. Recently I have been getting out to Mount Hood, Oregon, for summer snowboard camp. After I
graduate from high school, I surely plan on going to college in a mountainous area so I can still snowboard. I
hope I can push my snowboarding for as long as possible, and MSA is helping me do this.
Hi my name is AJ Herrmann and I am an alpine skier. I have been skiing at Mount
Snow since I was 3 years old and am now in my fourth year at MSA. Starting when I
was in 8th grade and in my first year at MSA, I learned that each skier had his or her
own strengths and weaknesses. MSA’s coaches exploit these strengths and help you
build on them to make them elite abilities, while taking your old weaknesses and
working on methods to make them better and maybe even elite. This being my junior
year in high school I find myself being a U18 and working this year on my point’s
portfolio to hopefully ski race in college. As important as my athletics are, MSA has
helped me to be more of an individual and to be a better, well-rounded student. I have
had the pleasure of keeping some of the teachers I started MSA with and continue to learn with them, while also
being taught by new teachers and being able to be exposed to new teaching perspectives. I look forward to
building on my academic and athletic abilities this year at MSA.
Hi my name is Austin Knuth, I’m 16 and I’m a junior at Lewis S. Mills High School. I’ve
been skiing since I was 4 years old and it is what I love to do. I grew up skiing at Ski
Sundown in New Hartford, CT. Before I made the transition to completely freeskiing,
I was on the Ski Sundown race team for 8 years. I have done all the local rail jams
around my area as well as a couple slopestyle events that I enjoyed very much.
In addition to skiing I also do Martial Arts at a high level both nationally and
internationally; I have traveled to Ireland numerous times as well as to Canada and
Puerto Rico. Due to all this hard work and commitment I have won 4 world titles and
numerous national titles as well as my junior black belt and I’m still working for my adult black belt. In addition
to karate I have been playing lacrosse since I was 12, soccer since I was 4. I like to skateboard in my free time I
have actually gone to Woodward East 3 times for skateboarding. Another thing that I do quite often is go a
gymnastics place to get private lessons for flipping so I can take those skills to the mountain.
I decided to come to Mount Snow Academy because I want a challenge. I know that this will help me progress
with skiing greatly due to the fact that I will be skiing with extremely high level coaches and will be on the slopes
every day. I am very hard-working and I take pride in my work because I know that you need to work to be
successful. During my time up at Mount Snow Academy, I have met new people which is always good because
you can take advice from them that you may have never heard before. I was also pulled towards Mount Snow
Academy because I know that it will give me brand new opportunities that I have never been exposed to before,
such as competing in slopestyle at a very high level. The school program at Mount Snow Academy is great
because it helps me to be self-reliant, bringing my school work to a new level, as well as having responsibility due
to the fact that the assignments will be done on my own much more than at home. I also believe that Mount
Snow Academy will help in the long run, preparing me for college.
MSA gets me onto the hill six days a week, giving me time to train and film. Recently I
have podiumed at several rail jams throughout the east coast and in Colorado. This
season at Mount Snow Academy, I am taking a less traditional approach to skiing. I am
finding myself wandering away from the norm that is competing and into the streets
with a generator, floodlights, and a camera. My main goal this ski season is to film a
sick season edit of myself skiing street rails and in the park.
My main academic goal is to graduate even though I am still a junior. All of my MSA
teachers are very supportive while pushing me, to set and achieve goals. The teachers
at MSA are fantastic to work with because each one of them is an expert in their own discipline. When I am not
skiing or doing schoolwork, I am usually skateboarding, playing guitar, or building and riding my motorcycles. My
plan after graduating is to take some time off and focus on myself, and my passions including skiing.
Putnam Valley, NY
Hi, I’m Joe Montano, sixteen years old, from Putnam Valley, New York. This is my
first year at MSA, although I’ve skied Mount Snow every weekend since I was eight. I
have gone through various weekend programs at the mountain, and saw MSA as the
next step in my progression to be the best freestyle skier I can be. I have developed a
great relationship with my coaches and teachers, as well as with my fellow student
teammates. The one-on-one teaching allows more in-depth exploration of my class
work, and enables me to learn more quickly than in a traditional classroom. Being able
to ski every day with excellent coaching has allowed me to progress as a skier much
more rapidly than had I been skiing just weekends. The support I receive from my team complements the
coaching, and is another factor that aids in advancing my skiing. Overall, I feel that I have benefited greatly from
the MSA experience, and have had a swell time while doing so.
Hey, what’s up? My name is Charlton Graves, although a lot of people refer to me as
Chili (it’s a long story). I’m a senior in high school and am part of the snowboard
program here at MSA. Growing up in Maryland, where mountains are practically
valleys, my home mountain was Liberty, PA which offered only 300 vertical feet of
terrain. Consequently I always dreamed of living closer to larger mountains. In order
to snowboard more seriously I have spent the last seven summers at High Cascade on
Mt. Hood, Oregon, where snowboarders come to make turns on one of the only
glaciers in America. So far Mount Snow has been a really valuable experience. This is
my first year at the academy and unfortunately my last, but so far it has taught me many valuable lessons. I am an
only child and the A-house has given me brothers that I never had. The snowboard program gives team
characteristics to an individual sport giving athletes the support system needed to succeed. Did I mention the
school? Alright, the schooling is phenomenal, and the teaching allows for a perfect balance of academics and
athletics. Being strapped into a snowboard almost every day has greatly improved my riding and has exposed me
to the sport as a whole. I am thankful to be here!
West Wardsboro, VT
My name is Perry Legg. I am local to Vermont and have been skiing since I was three
years old and switched to snowboarding when I was ten to follow my friends. Since
there isn’t much else to do up here in Vermont, I spend all my free time riding which
used to be every day I didn’t have school. Mount Snow Academy is giving me the
opportunity to take my riding to a whole new level. I was one of the lucky recipients
of a scholarship and without it I would have never been able to afford to pay for this
amazing school; what an incredible experience this is for me. I also work at the Valley
View Saloon when I’m not competing or doing school work. I am a senior so this is
going to be my last and only year at MSA but it has been the best winter at school I’ve ever had. Without a
scholarship, it wouldn’t have been possible.
Hello, I am Joseph Nichols. This is my first year a MSA and I couldn’t be more
enthusiastic. I am from Granby, Connecticut. I used to ski at a small mountain called
Ski Sundown in Connecticut where I would try to ski as much as I could with every
opportunity I could get. Four days of skiing just wasn’t enough for my love of skiing. I
grew up skiing with Bradley Harper learning freestyle. It was always a friendly
competition until I saw him do a flip so I had to step it up and do something even
cooler. Last year when he told me he was going to MSA I was bummed I couldn’t ski
with him that year, but I also knew he would thrive there. He told me I would too. I
knew that MSA was where I wanted to be and I’m so glad that I am at MSA this year.
Jump Start Program
The goal of the “Jump Start” program is just that---to give young athletes the opportunity to understand serious
training and to entice them to a full time program. The athletes participating for the 2014/2015 season are:
Alex Bornstein, Charlie Coffin, Brendan Schoff, and Rachel Smoller.
Mount Snow Academy:
How It All Works
Each year, MSA’s student-athletes attend their home schools for the first and last quarters of the
academic year. They arrive at Mount Snow Academy in November and stay until the end of March.
Curricula are developed between the home school and MSA teachers. Students return to their home
schools well-prepared, intellectually engaged, and often having gone into far greater depth than their
peers. For developing first-year athletes, MSA also offers a half-season program.
Mount Snow Academy’s athletic and academic programs are built around individualization. In the first
years after the Academy’s founding in 1972, students attended Wilmington High School for half of each
day and skied for the other half. This system provided fine athletic training, but too much
fragmentation of the academic experience. In response to this weakness, in 1980 MSA instituted a
personalized, one-to-one instructional mode which matches highly qualified instructors with individual
students for each academic discipline. Using this system, Mount Snow Academy has grown into one of
the finest educational institutions of its kind.
The concern for individual needs is as evident on the slopes as in the classroom. Our coaching staff is
deeply experienced and dedicated to developing successful athletes. They customize a training and
competition program for each student, and work to maximize each athlete’s individual growth in their
sport. They also encourage a strong sense of cooperation and teamwork among the athletes.
MSA is the only slope-side sports academy in the Northeast. The Training Center is steps from the
lifts at the main base of Mount Snow. Students have access to a broad array of terrain, including
Carinthia, the Northeast’s only all-park face, and Haystack’s slopes and state-of-the-art fitness center.
Mount Snow Academy ● Training Center● 25 Mount Snow Road ● West Dover, VT 05356
802-464-1100 ext. 4667 or 4521 ● www.mountsnowacademy.org
Thank You for