Leadership

Thomas E. Hassan, President
Thomas E. Hassan joined SYA in June 2016 and brings more than 35 years of educational experience to his new role, including three years as an SYA board member. As the former Principal of Phillips Exeter Academy (NH), he served in many capacities during his 26-year tenure, including as math instructor, director of college counseling, director of admissions, assistant principal, acting principal and principal. Prior to Exeter, Hassan worked at Brown and Harvard Universities as well as the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Under Hassan's direction, Exeter became a leader in efforts to further global outreach programs for students and faculty. A graduate of Brown University (RI), Hassan earned his MA and Ed.D degrees at Harvard University (MA).

Dr. Aric J. Visser, Head of Schools and Programs

Dr. Aric J. Visser assumed the role of Head of Schools and Programs in 2017 after serving for three years as SYA’s Director of Curriculum. Prior to this, Visser served in a number of roles including instructor of the Joven Erasmus program in Zaragoza, College Counselor in Rennes, and as an independent researcher looking at the impact of SYA's programs on students abroad. Visser brings vast experience in international education to SYA, as well as a deep commitment and investment in SYA’s mission. He has worked with students on five continents and regularly speaks on topics of international education and creativity at education conferences around the world. Visser earned a B.A. in Spanish, Journalism and Telecommunications and Film from Eastern Michigan University and received his PhD from the University of Zaragoza in Spain. His doctoral dissertation, “Study Abroad on Purpose: Promoting student growth in intercultural competence and creativity,” focused on a multi-year study of the social and educational impacts of SYA programs abroad.

John McLoughlin, Resident Director, SYA China

John McLoughlin joined SYA in 1996, and has since served in multiple capacities, including as SYA China Resident Director from 1996-1999, and then as the SYA China Summer Program Director starting in 2014. McLoughlin joined as Interim Resident Director in 2017, bringing over 30 years of teaching experience and extensive experience in China. Over the course of his career, McLoughlin has taught at the Peoples University of China, Boston College High School, and Brooks School. McLoughlin is currently on leave from Brooks School, where he taught history and served as the Director of Exchange Programs. A graduate of Tufts University in International Relations, McLoughlin received his Certificate of Advanced Study in Chinese Language while studying at Beijing First Foreign Languages Institute. McLoughlin went on to receive his MAT in History/ Education from Boston College.

Mina M. Qadir, Resident Director, SYA France

Ms. Qadir joined SYA France in 2015. She first assumed the role of college counselor and test site supervisor in Rennes. Most recently, she served as the Dean of Students. She also has over ten years of experience teaching French Language and Culture at both the K-12 and college levels. Ms. Qadir is fluent in three languages: French, English and Farsi. She has lived on three continents and has earned degrees from both French and U.S. universities, including a DEUG in French Literature from the Université de Rennes 2, a BA in French from Cal State East Bay, a California Teaching Credential, and an MS in School Administration from National University.

Patrick Scanlon, Resident Director, SYA Italy

Patrick Scanlon joined SYA Italy in 2002 serving as the English teacher and college counselor for two years. In 2005 he became the Resident Director, a post he held until 2015 before taking a sabbatical year. He recently returned for the 2016-2017 academic year. After college, he spent three years teaching English and perfecting his Italian-language skills in Milan, Florence and Crans su Sierre, Switzerland. Following this, he taught chemistry, general science and English at Albuquerque Academy for 16 years prior to joining SYA Italy. Scanlon earned his BA and MA degrees at the University of New Mexico and St. John's College (NM), respectively.

Meghan Lewis Roof, Resident Director, SYA Spain

Ms. Roof joins SYA with extensive experience in management of global education programs, as well as Spanish language instruction. Meghan worked more than a decade for Oxbridge Academic Programs—most recently as the program coordinator for Oxbridge’s programs in Spain and as the program director of Oxbridge's summer immersion program in Salamanca. Additional overseas experience includes one year in Portugal as an English and history teacher and two years as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant at Spanish schools in both Madrid and Valladolid. Prior to this, Meghan taught Spanish for eight years and served as the World Language Department Chair for four years at Louisville Collegiate School in Kentucky. During her tenure in this role, Meghan spearheaded an overhaul of the school's World Language curriculum and helped establish a proficiency-based curriculum based on the American Council of the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency standards. She also led a push for active and experiential participation in the language classroom, a core part of SYA’s mission. Meghan earned both her BA in Spanish and International Studies of Europe and her MA in Spanish from Ohio University.