On Tuesday, Feb. 5, the College of Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) held the inaugural meeting of VPA’s Young Alumni Council. The council was created as a complement to the existing VPA Council and is charged with helping the college’s leadership further enhance the VPA student experience.
The Young Alumni Council is comprised of 16 alumni from across the college, with representatives from each of VPA’s six schools and departments.
The meeting agenda included a welcome from Lauren Cramer L’94, chair of the VPA Council and a member of Syracuse University’s Board of Trustees, and a discussion on how VPA can strengthen alumni engagement to benefit current students as they prepare to graduate and begin their professional lives.
“Our Young Alumni Council is incredibly enthusiastic and full of ideas,” says VPA Dean Michael S. Tick. “Our plan is to meet twice a year and grow the council as more alumni are identified and express a willingness to participate.”
The members of the Young Alumni Council are:
- Noah Aberlin ’04, director of operations, Paul Taylor Dance Foundation (Department of Drama)
- Stephen Carrasco ’05, actor (Department of Drama)
- Michael Contini ’06, vice president, arts and culture sales, AudienceView (Department of Drama)
- Meredith Elson ’04, design director for Eclipse, Keeco, LLC (School of Design)
- Mark Fisher ’02, owner, Mark Fisher Fitness (Department of Drama)
- Elisabeth Gorfaine ’09, assistant director and producer, performance and live programs, exhibitions, the Museum of Modern Art (Department of Transmedia)
- Jessica Hurwit ’09, senior industrial designer, Michael Graves Architecture & Design (School of Design)
- Maxwell Kimble ’08, co‐founder, Simmer Group (Whitman School of Management)
- Malcolm Merriweather ’07, director of choirs and assistant professor, Brooklyn College (Setnor School of Music)
- Clairanne Pesce ’10, senior interior designer, Array Architects (School of Design)
- Heather Reavey ’99, head of practice innovation, EPAM Continuum (School of Design)
- Rachel Renock ’13, CEO and creative director, Wethos (School of Design)
- Evin Floyd Robinson ’12 G’14, co-founder and director, New York On Tech (Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies)
- Melissa Shakun ’05, designer and art director, “Saturday Night Live” (School of Art)
- Dayanna Torres ’06, director, economic opportunities and business partnerships, JobsFirstNYC (Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies)
- Sara Villagio ’04, chief marketing officer, Carnegie Hall (Setnor School of Music)
If you have questions about the Young Alumni Council, contact Mike Grannis, VPA’s assistant director for development and alumni relations, at firstname.lastname@example.org.