wrightAfter graduation, Jalisa Wright ('13) applied to TNTP Academy, a "national nonprofit committed to ending the injustice of educational inequality," which prepared her for her current work at in Langston Hughes Academy in New Orleans. She currently teaches 5th and 6th grade social studies in which "literacy and close reading are the main objectives." She says, "I teach literacy: the ability to read and write. What's most rewarding about what i do is knowing the impact of my work."

Jalisa cites the move from New York City to New Orleans as a milestone in her life, saying "NOLA is truly a city of expression." She credits WRT 307 (Professional Writing) and her internship—which exposed her to the demands of the classroom—as particularly helpful in her current career. (October 2014)

daniels-diehlKylie Daniels-Diehl (14’) says she “absolutely loves” her job as an Account Coordinator for Creative Media Marketing, a beauty PR firm in NYC. "I write every single day in my job—[the major has] helped me in more ways than I can count. To be taken seriously and represent yourself well, it's very important to know how to effectively communicate. I email editors of very well known magazines and blogs daily; to gain a response from them, I have to know how to write and what type of writing the situation calls for."

Kylie has just moved into her first NYC apartment and plans to start writing her own blog soon. To current writing students she says, “don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. Take a variety of classes. You want to be well rounded when it's time for the real world.” (October 2014) —Rose Aschebrock, WP intern

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Ally Abrams (’12) is the Marketing Communications Manager for the Sponsor Finance group with GE Capital in Chicago. Ally manages  communications so her days are spent writing press releases, managing web content for the external sites, creating print and digital advertisements—all while trying to understand how data can inform everything they do. Ally says, “It was not emphasized enough in school that writing is a major part of any job. Being able to effectively communicate ideas, needs, message, etc. to others is a core skill.” In the near future Ally hopes to ace her GREs and be accepted to the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, enabling her long-time dream of becoming the Chief Marketing Officer. (September 2014) —Rose Aschebrock, WP intern
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In our November 2011 update, Andrew Farah (’09) and his three partners had just created a mobile web application agency Rounded. Rounded has just turned three, has nine full-time staff based in Syracuse, and is launching new offices in San Francisco for its newly developed mobile application company Density. Density is a counting app that monitors the number of people that travel through a door or enter a room and then generates the accompanying analytics and predictions. As CEO of Density, Andrew will be one of the Rounded partners making the permanent move with his wife and dog, Indiana Jones, to San Francisco to open new Density offices. Andrew and his wife are looking forward to the move, which they plan to road-trip, making sightseeing stops along the way. (September 2014) —Rose Aschebrock, WP intern
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Alesha Davis (’13) is pursuing a 3-year graduate degree at Quinnipiac University School of Law in Connecticut. She accepted a scholarship from Quinnipiac over other schools because it offered her "an intimate classroom environment with accessible professors, great externships, clinics and fellowship opportunities." Alesha is interested in corporate media entertainment law and family law—specifically marital law. She continues to be passionate about writing, saying "always be honest with yourself and your audience, say what you mean and mean what you say." When not studying, Alesha has been taking trips to the homes of family and friends in Miami and Atlanta, and she hopes to visit Texas and Jamaica soon. (August 2014) —Rose Aschebrock and Kylie Daniels-Diehl,, WP interns
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ABraden Becker (‘11) is currently an editor for Skyword, a Boston-based content marketing firm that matches “brands with writers who specialize in industry news that these businesses can publish to improve their exposure online. Braden also enjoys his involvement in health and wellness. “Distance running is as much a passion now as when I was on SU's cross country and track teams, and I hope to eventually establish a byline in that fitness field. I'd be thrilled to combine a voice in health with a full-time gig in the big leagues such as WIRED or Google.” Braden has made his debut in marathon distance running in the NYC Marathon. He tells us, “Qualifying for the Boston Marathon is my next goal, but it shouldn't be a problem.” (July 2014) —Kylie Daniels-Diehl, WP intern
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After earning her Master's degree in Inclusive Special Education from SU, Veronica Boehm ('11), was hired by Homer Central School District in Central New York. She is currently a Special Educator at Homer Junior High, where she teaches English Language Arts and Math courses with two Resource sections. Veronica tells us, "My writing degree has enabled me to produce quality Individualized Education Programs for my students, communicate effectively with parents and teachers, and share my love of writing with my ELA students on a daily basis." Veronica is also recently engaged and planning to be married next summer in Vero Beach, Florida, near her hometown of Melbourne. (June 2014) —Kylie Daniels-Diehl, WP intern
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Taylor Baker, Alara Basul, Stefanee Brody, Lindsay Cameron, Kylie Daniels-Diehl, Chelsea DeBaise, Brianna Edgerly-Dallal, George Edinger, Naomi Falk, Sara Freund, Sam Funk, Emily Gilson, Charlotte Horton, Ceasia King, Dan Kitchen, Danielle Kolodkin, Emily Latainer, Annie Licata, Samantha Mangovski, Kali Mehrotra, Alexander Nelson, Teresa Nigolian, Michelle Polizzi, Katie Richards, David Swenton. Katherine Tull, Nicky Zamoida. (May 2014)
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Since we last spoke to Cory Ferreira (‘09), he has started a new job with Nielsen Catalina Solutions as a business development manager. He provides data consultation to Apple and Facebook as it pertains to their advertising platforms. “It's been fun to try more of the commercial side of things instead of doing pure marketing and brand management as I was at my last company.” Cory still aspires to have his own company someday, hopefully in the not so distant future. “One of the best parts about my current job is that I get to network with senior execs at top internet companies, which will be super useful when I finally do take the plunge and commit full time to my own gig.” Until then, Cory is enjoying learning about how the web functions commercially as well as developing a strategic consulting skill set. linkedin (April 2014) —Kylie Daniels-Diehl, WP intern
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Mary Dickinson Jensen (’13) is currently working for GEAR UP as a mentor at Skyview High School in Vancouver, WA. Her primary work includes assisting English and science teachers with their classes, tutoring students, and working to help students to succeed in high school while preparing for college. Mary says that being a Writing major has given her the skills to teach both English and technology classes. Outside of the class room, Mary works freelance web design jobs and plans to start a web design certification program next fall. She is also active as the Vice President of Events for the Stumptown Orange Alumni Clubin Portland, Oregon. Current and upcoming events include March Madness watch parties, April day of service, and Kentucky Derby party at Portland Meadows horse track. linkedin (April 2014) —Kylie Daniels-Diehl, WP intern
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Marina Charny ('11) was hired at Hilsinger-Mendelson, a boutique literary public relations firm that handles book campaigns for writers like Suzanne Somers, Harry Evans, Reggie Jackson, and Erin Brockovich.  Marina began as a publicity assistant and has been promoted to publicist, working one-on-one with clients and media.  She is also a contributing writer for Racked NY, which covers fashion news, sales, and store openings in the NYC area. Marina writes, “In an industry as competitive and crazy as PR, a good writer gets ahead of the game . . . . We live in a highly visual, fast-paced, 140-character society, and you have to always work at finding the best way to put your ideas right out there in a relevant and provocative way.” linkedin (March 2014)
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AJ Willingham ('09) has recently been to LA to cover the Daytime Emmys and to New Orleans to cover the NBA All Star game for HLNtv.com. Since we last spoke with her, she has taken on a role in expanding HLN and CNN’s social media presence; she helps handle social media initiatives such as live-tweeting events and arranging promotional opportunities. AJ's work is regularly featured on CNN.com, and she still covers everyday "feel good" news, such as animal stories, military news, and everyday heroes for HLNtv. She tells us, "Sometimes I get a lot of weird stuff when I Google my name. It's pretty cool." AJ also has big plans for the future: "I live in Atlanta, just bought a brand new truck, and am getting married in May." linkedin (March 2014) —Kylie Daniels-Diehl, WP intern
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Roxanne Bocyck (’10) has founded Back To School, Inc., a not-for-profit organization that offers customized safety training for school transportation departments. Profits from the organization help adults go “back to school” to continue their education. As a part-time student through University College, Roxanne was inspired by the stories of many of her classmates who, like her, returned to school to continue their education as adults. She writes, “These stories, along with my passion for education and how it helped me to learn so much about myself, made me want to help others, and [they are] part of the reason I started the not-for-profit.” Roxanne is also currently working on a book about her experiences. linkedin (February 2014)
leoneFreelance and editing positions have kept Brooke Leone (‘13) busy since graduation.  She manages the websites of the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church and the Belhurst Estate Winery.  Brooke also writes for Seattle Backpackers Magazine. Brooke says, “In both my freelance and internship positions, I constantly use techniques and tools I learned from the Writing Program . . . . All of the digital media courses (Digital Writing, Intertext, Digital Identities) I took play a huge part in my career thus far.” Brooke suggests that Writing & Rhetoric majors take a variety of writing courses: “the media world is constantly changing and you never know what will be useful!” Brooke has also recently accepted a full-time postion as a Brand Strategist with Terakeet, and we hope to get an update on her work there in the near future. linkedin (February 2014)
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As an Assistant Media Buyer and Planner with Crowley Webb in Buffalo, NY, Samantha Stark (’11) works as part of a team to create and implement media plans for advertisements.  Sam also blogs on the company’s site. Sam writes, “My background in writing and rhetoric and my time spent as an intern for the Writing Program landed me an editing internship at a start-up news company right out of college; this experience . . . landed me a full-time job in public relations at Cantor Fitzgerald; this experience helped to land my current position.  I don’t know if I’ll end up in Buffalo forever, but right now I am enjoying the festivals on the waterfront, the great food, and the kind and warm-hearted people.” linkedin (January 2014)
zender2012 Outstanding Major Benjamin Zender just completed his first semester in an MA PhD program in English with a concentration in Composition and Rhetoric at UMass Amherst.  He is also pursuing a graduate certificate in Advanced Feminist Studies. As part of his acceptance to the program, Benjamin received funding for seven years as a Teaching Associate, as well as a Herrington-Moran Fellowship that reduced his teaching load for his first year.  This fall Benjamin taught College Writing 112, in which he worked to help first-year students understand that they were already writers with writing fluency across multiple contexts. Benjamin lives in Northampton, MA and is learning the banjo. (January 2014)
belkStephanie Belk Prats ('09) recently celebrated her third year as the Senior Spanish Editor for Stylesight, a global trend forecasting company that serves professionals in the style, fashion, and design sectors. Working in New York City since 2010, Stephanie edits and translates fashion-focused trend reports, marketing content, newsletters, and press releases for an international client base. Stephanie also produces trend topics, updates content on social media sites, and curates content on the Spanish live site. In additon, she maintains a style guide to set branding and language standards, manages and assigns work to freelance editors, and trains new employees.  linkedin (December 2013)
clarkAllison Clark ('13) is the in-house graphic designer for Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown, NY, where she designs ads, t-shirts, and other materials for the adjoining Ommegang store and café.  Though she works primarily with design, Allison reports that her work with Writing and Rhetoric has been an asset in both landing and performing her job: “During literally every single interview . . . the potential employer has been impressed by the fact that I was a Writing major. I don't say this to brag, but to emphasize just how important it is for people in ANY profession to know how to write.” This summer Allison spent a month tutoring in South Africa with an organization called Inkululeko.  She hopes to continue this work by tutoring writing in her spare time.  linkedin (December 2013)
heikkilaCaitlin Heikkila (Outstanding Major, 2009) has been busy since we last caught up with her in 2010.  In December 2012, Caitlin opened her own content and community-building agency, Social Spoon.  The agency provides social media content, web writing, event production, and community building strategy for lifestyle brands like Bed Bath & Beyond, Necessary Clothing, and LURK Beauty. Living and working in Brooklyn, Caitlin continues to write for her own site, Becoming Brooklyn, as well as contribute to Brooklyn Styled and Blend About.  She reports, “My local audience has grown and I've had a lot of opportunities to report on new restaurants and the Brooklyn food scene, as well as travel for food events like the Austin Food and Wine Festival.” Caitlin is engaged to Paul Fusco, and the two are planning a June 2014 wedding.  linkedin  (November 2013)
wimberlyImani Wimberly ('13) is pursuing an M.S. in Higher Education at Syracuse University.  After completing his master’s, he hopes to work in a setting where he can help underrepresented groups stay in college and earn their diplomas.  Imani’s long-term goals include working as a high school administrator.  “The Higher Education program is very rich with writing so getting my bachelor’s degree in Writing & Rhetoric has put me at an advantage,” writes Imani. “Being a Writing & Rhetoric major gives me a heads up on some of the students in my cohort who haven't written papers . . . in their given undergrad majors. Also the work ethic from the Writing Program taught me a lot in how to handle my graduate course load. I have a lot of reading and I can manage it fairly well because of the strategies I learned when handling my undergrad reading load.” linkedin (November 2013)
luo2011 Outstanding Major Kuan Luo has recently left a position at The Washington Post to move to Brooklyn and work with a small group of seven passionate folks on Grand St., a curated marketplace for creative technology and electronics. "I write with pixels, grids and typography most of the time."  Kuan is responsible for all of the visual design and information architecture work for the website and the mobile app.  The Android app, which was launched in June, has been recognized by Google and many other sites for its innovation and ease of use. Kuan writes, “I am the solo designer in the company, and I do everything related with visuals . . . .  Aside from making things look good, I also work on projects that are rather invisible—I am involved in building the company's design-centric culture by implementing weekly design meetings and encouraging everyone to sketch and bring ideas to the table.” (October 2013)
ROCKWELLSince we last caught up with Brandon Linn (’10), he has moved to Philadelphia and completed a certificate in human resource management.  Brandon currently works as the Human Resources Representative for St. Luke’s Physician Group, a network of 115 medical offices. Brandon explains that his work in Writing & Rhetoric has been an asset in his field: “Companies are looking for quality corporate communicators. As an HR professional I am dealing with talent management and finding cutting edge ways to attract and retain human capital. My writing skills have come in handy when I am analyzing resumes or applications to determine how candidates match up with company needs. I know that my. . . experiences in this incredible major will take me very far.” Brandon is still playing music and collecting vinyl records, and he writes that he has “finally given in to attempting (and now loving) yoga.” linkedin (October 2013)
tormentaOlivia Tormenta ('13) was recently hired as an account coordinator at Rubenstein Associates, Inc. in Manhattan, where she works in the Real Estate Group and assists with media research and outreach, presentations, and project coordination.  Her job includes everything from writing pitches to compiling client reports, building media lists, and proofreading press material. Olivia loves working in the fast-paced world of PR, and she says that “being a good writer/editor is essential for establishing an influential voice and sending a powerful message to the public.”“I always planned on using my writing background to break into the communications industry,” Olivia writes, “and it really has been so helpful in every aspect of what I'm doing now. Having a liberal arts degree gave me competitive leverage amongst other applicants and an invaluable foundation for my future and career plans.” linkedin (September 2013)
ROCKWELLAfter a year with City Year in Baton Rouge, Meghan Donohue ('12) is back for a second year and a new level of challenge and responsibility. She is serving as a Team Leader in a middle school, where she will provide leadership, guidance, and support. In addition to her work with students, Meghan regularly contributes to the City Year Baton Rouge Blog. "Writing and Rhetoric is a terrific foundation, and it just so happened to lead me down the path of teaching . . . . My professors in the Writing Program modeled leadership, student engagement strategies, and approachability . . . constructing safe spaces for me to take creative (and often unconventional) risks in my academic and personal communication." Meghan says she is "taking full advantage of the Louisiana seasons: Mardi Gras, Football Season, and Crawfish Season." She has also adopted a stray kitten and named him after one of her favorite basketball players, Charles Barkley. linkedin (September 2013)
ROCKWELLAs a Communications Specialist at the Syracuse Rescue Mission, Amanda E. Rockwell ('13) is a member of the marketing team—an integral part of its development efforts—and is responsible for the written material that represents the organization to the community, donors, and potential clients. "To be a part of an organization like the Rescue Mission that serves the most vulnerable members of our community is truly inspirational. I am grateful to the Writing Program for arming me with the ability to effectively communicate the amazing work that is being done right here in Syracuse, where I grew up." Outside of work Amanda is working on her personal writing and enjoys camping and hiking. She is currently planning a September wedding. Her advice to Writing and Rhetoric majors: "Be confident that the right career is waiting for you!" linkedin (August 2013)
TousignantAs a freelance assistant at Details magazine,  Lauren Tousignant (‘12) writes for the Daily Details Blog and assists the Style Director, Market Director, and Market Editor. On weekends, she takes classes in improv and sketch writing at The People's Improv Theatre. Lauren says, “I can't express how beneficial WRT 331 and 430 have been, particularly in my improv and sketch writing classes. The brainstorming, expansion, and editing techniques I learned there and afterwards while working in the Writing Center, I apply to all my draft sketches and stand-up pieces. I will forever rave about how much better a writer I became while working in the WC." Though Lauren lives in New York City, she still keeps Syracuse close: “I still bleed orange and frequent the sports bars downtown whenever the Orange are on TV." linkedin (July 2013)
spinosaAs a medical student at the University of Nebraska, Margaret Spinosa ('12) says that life in medical school is "Digest. Memorize. Repeat, repeat, repeat." The Writing Major, she says, "is a versatile toolbox that gives you what you need to navigate real world situations where communication is imperative. Employment and graduate studies are often painfully focus specific. My suggestion: take in all that you can, especially with regards to the breadth of the courses offered. And most importantly, enjoy your time in the WP. Learn with all the effort you can muster and relish in having a space for discourse and dialogue. You may not get the chance to do so again." Among her personal milestones since graduation, Margaret lists moving halfway across the country, making bread pudding, and discovering the "hot, spicy condiment goodness of Tabasco sauce for the first time." (June 2013)
2013Charles Akinboyewa, Alyssa Austin, Paola Benevento, Sheri Bhirdo, Jayme Brown, Allison Clark, Alesha Davis, Mary Dickinson Jensen, Shelby Epps, Nicole Fair, Tenaysia Fox, Hayley Kang, Matthew Kovac, Heather LaPeer, Brooke Leone, Amy Li, Jamie Peraza, Brianna Sander, Jillian Siegel, Red Thomas, Olivia Tormenta, Jordan Walker, Imani Wimberly, Jalisa Wright, Rachel Zaporowski, Brittany Zar. (May 2013)
bairdJocelyn Baird (’10) is a copywriter and editorial assistant for Virtucom Group, a full-service publishing and strategy company that creates custom content for clients, in Syracuse. "I strongly suggest all WP students take advantage of the internship opportunities. My internship with SU Press put me ahead of the competition because it gave me real professional experience in the working world—something you can't duplicate in the classroom . . . . I also think [WRT 307] is a course that every writing major should take." Jocelyn has also been writing fiction and working on a collection of essays that she hopes to put together as a memoir.  She is also training to run a 5K. linkedin (April 2013)
merwinSince we last heard from Francesca Merwin (’11), she has completed her Engagement Fellowship and moved to Rhode Island, where she now serves as an AmeriCorps VISTA member.  In this one-year position, Francesca works as Assistant Director of First Star URI Academy, an innovative college prep program for foster youth.  Her job includes working on the academy’s four-year plan, collecting data, maintaining regular check-ins with the high school students, recruiting, and advertising.  Francesca hopes to continue with social justice/nonprofit work once she completes her AmeriCorps year in June.  Though she misses Syracuse, Francesca says that she is in love with Rhode Island, where she lives with her boyfriend, Alex, and their foster dog, MoMo. linkedin (April 2013)
wolfe2010 Outstanding Major Kim Wolfe was married in July, moved to Brooklyn in August, and is now working at Hudson Guild as a Youth Leadership Development Specialist with Teen Services. Kim’s position includes working with high school and GED students on resumes, cover letters, and job and college applications. She also develops dialogue and leadership initiatives, and her most current project focuses on providing tools to students in a Manhattan high school that is being phased out due to not meeting academic standards. Life in the city is exciting with many great opportunities, Kim says.  She is currently applying to go grad school for Public Administration with a focus on Education Policy and hopes to begin in the fall. linkedin (March 2013)
whiteAs a graduate student at West Chester University in Pennsylvania, Cassie White (’11) is pursuing a degree in Public Administration/ Sports Administration.  She plans to graduate in December. In addition to going to school full-time, Cassie also works as an administrator at Hockessin Soccer Club, a nonprofit youth soccer organization, where she enjoys handling registration, communications, sponsorship, and fundraising, as well as co-leading soccer tournaments. Cassie hopes to work in collegiate athletics after she completes her degree.  She lives in Delaware and is recently engaged to SU alum and Newhouse graduate student Griff Graves. linkedin (March 2013)
littleAs a graduate student in Communication Studies & Rhetoric at Baylor University,
Jaclyn Bissell (’10) is working on a thesis that examines the intersection between the rhetoric of public memory and tourism studies.  She plans to begin a PhD in the same field this fall and looks forward to a career in academia.
CLICK FOR UPDATE!
3/8/13: Jaclyn reports that she has successfully defended her masters thesis—Public Memory, Tourism, and Galveston’s Selective Heritage: A Rhetorical Analysis of the Elissa—and will begin Phd work at the University of Maryland in the fall.
Jaclyn also serves as an editorial assistant for the Journal of Rhetoric & Public Affairs, spends time working on articles for submission to various communications journals, and researches new public memory projects. Jaclyn was recently engaged and is planning a wedding for Fall 2013.  She quilts, knits, is "still a rabid Orange basketball fan," and enjoys spending time with her border collie/husky, Kodah. linkedin (February 2013)
albertJosh Albert (’12) is working as an advertising sales manager for Harrison Scott Publications, a mid-sized financial news organization.  In his position, he manages the advertising sales for a weekly newsletter called Hedge Fund AlertJosh lives in the East Village in New York City and enjoys a “reverse commute” to Hoboken, NJ every day. 
“I am really happy with where I ended up following graduation,” Josh writes.  “I am enjoying working for a small news organization and learning about how that process works.” Josh’s brother Greg was recently accepted to SU, and Josh is excited to return to campus to visit him next year.  linkedin (February 2013)
littleCurrently working in the editorial department at The Root, "the leading online source of news and commentary from an African-American perspective," Celeste Little ('09) writes primarily about African American television, music, and culture. Since earning her Master's in 2011 and moving back to NYC, Celeste has also worked for CBS Eye Productions, mediabistro.com, and The Jersey Journal, where she had a front page story published. Outside of work, Celeste volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters of NY and has taken up running. Of her time in the Writing Program, she says it was "definitely a joy." linkedin (January 2013)
jrozLooking for "a little more sand, a little less concrete," Joanna Rozansky ('10) left NYC behind last summer and made the jump to southern California, where she is now an Account Manager with CitizenNet, a startup company developing software tools that optimize Facebook advertising campaigns. Of her work she says, "Basically I'm the client lead across a few different accounts/brands/studios, . . . but at a startup, so I wear many hats! . . . . It's so funny, whenever I talk about our major (and all the digitally-related components), everyone is really so impressed Cuse was already moving in that direction . . . it's so valuable now . . . can't believe it was already 3+ years ago." linkedin (January 2013)

e parkAs Director of Marketing for green technology distributor Energy Squad, Soriana Stern (’12) blogs, shoots and edits videos, and manages web and social media for Energy Squad and for partner company, Bethesda Systems. Though Soriana didn’t always see herself working with green technology, she is really enjoying the job, learning the industry, and considering pursuing an MBA to expand her qualifications and training in project management. Soriana credits her experience in the Writing Program with much of her success, noting the influence of Kevin Browne, Krista Kennedy, George Rhinehart, and other teachers:  “The major has taught me to see in a different way. Because of this, I can communicate out of the box, and it's really been working. I am loving my life right now, and I definitely wouldn't be where I am and who I am if it weren't for the major.” linkedin (December 2012)

e parkIn her work as legal assistant for Berger and Green, a Social Security Disability law firm, Julie Nascone ('12) reviews potential cases to find good candidates for the firm to assist in obtaining Social Security Disability benefits, and she serves as a liaison between clients and the firm during the process, from the initial hearing to the final decision. Julie writes, ""Most of what I do is interact with potential clients and clients—all things that working with students in the Writing Center has helped prepare me to do! It's definitely not something I expected to be doing when I started college three years ago, but I absolutely love that at the end of the day I get to go home feeling like I made a difference in my clients' lives." (December 2012)
e park Sable Nerette ('10) recently completed a fellowship in which she worked as a Writing Center Director and teacher at North Lawndale College Prep High School in Chicago. The work was challenging but rewarding, Sable says. "I had to create a culture/ atmosphere of writing . . . . I had to persuade inner city students who lacked resources beneficial for their academic growth that writing was a necessity." Her position also included teaching students how to be peer coaches, helping to produce literary magazines, organizing poetry slams and writing contests, and coordinating university visits. With the completion of her internship, Sable is working outside academia and devoting time to her music, which she describes as "neo soul, r&b, hip hop, and lyrical." linkedin (November 2012)
e parkA Communications Specialist in the Communications Leadership Development Program at GE Capital, Ally Abrams ('12) is currently serving the first of three eight-month rotations and working with organizational communications in Norfolk, Connecticut. Ally works to support communications for various campaigns and initiatives, drive usage of new digital tools to engage employees, and showcase GE Capital's corporate citizenship via social media, intranet, and video. Ally has received three Above and Beyond awards for her work to date. "In my role, innovation is encouraged," Ally writes. "It's exciting to work with so many talented people to come up with new and better ways of doing things." linkedin (November 2012)
e parkDespite several scholarship offers to top 20 law schools, Eugene Park ('11) decided to take a year off from that goal to get some work experience. He considers that decision a personal milestone. He says, "My writing degree and the skills I learned as a writing major were instrumental in my being offered a job—seven days after graduation—and succeeding at my current position as Editorial Associate at MindEdge Inc." Eugene also started a pre-law blog to provide tips, guidance, and current news regarding the law school application process and the legal profession. He is in the process of reapplying to law schools this fall. linkedin (October 2012)
v boemVeronica Boehm (’11) was recently one of 18 graduate students accepted into SU School of Education's Syracuse Urban Inclusive Resident Teacher program. She is currently working as a full-time resident teacher at Hughes Middle School and will be at Nottingham High School in the spring, while taking classes at night. Veronica says, "My writing degree has already helped me through my resident teaching experience; I've written lesson plans, letters to parents, and soon I will co-write Individualized Education Programs for my own caseload of students. I'm excited for a future career as an inclusive teacher in urban schools because it's an underrepresented—but rewarding—area of education." (October 2012)
cory fSince Cory Ferreira ('09) began heading up LSAT marketing efforts at Manhattan Prep, they have doubled their revenues and continue to grow. This summer their goal was to help over 500 students prepare for law school. "Writing is still my passion. I've been a guest writer for the Deebs On TV blog for the last few months. I have also helped with the development and launch of a mobile app that helps users to embark on curated adventures around New York City. Landing a job in an industry I'm passionate about (education) and moving to New York City have been real milestones for me. My next goal is to start my own successful company—I can't think of anything more rewarding than creating meaningful jobs in a recovering economy." linkedin (September 2012)
kirstimKirsti Maurer (’10) is currently a buyer with JADAK Technologies and says, "A degree in writing truly can take you anywhere. I've also been pinged to write blogs, activity reports, and step by step instructions for business (thanks to my WRT 307 teacher for that and all the other professional writing skills he taught us). My customers have praised my professionalism and courteous nature via email—which in corporate America is a must." She considers her greatest personal accomplishment the work she and her certified therapy dog, a Saint Bernard named Guinness, do at nursing homes and schools for hard to place and disabled children. Kirsti is starting a Masters program this fall in Health Care Administration at Utica College, with an ultimate goal of opening a non-profit animal therapy center for troops suffering from PTSD who may not qualify for a personal service animal. linkedin (September 2012)
Currently a copy editor, Braden Becker (’11), works at TMCnet, Technology Marketing Corporation. Braden has gained experience with shooting and editing video, as well as continuing to blog on a variety of topics. His goals for the future include staying involved in competitive running—he competed in varsity cross country and track and field at SU—in addition to working towards clinching a job with companies such as Google and Nike. "As a writing major, style and grammar are your best friends. It’s really put into perspective how high a pedestal you may stand on relative to others already in the business field . . . . Though many writing-based positions require skill-sets and industry knowledge that you learn more in the field than in school, I genuinely feel like the Writing Program has given me an invaluable foundation for everything else that comes later. I almost don’t feel like the rookie or the ‘new guy’ sitting at my desk.” —Soriana Stern, WP intern (August 2012)
Wes Epstein (‘10), has been living and working in Miami as a Production Coordinator with Triangle Entertainment, a sports and entertainment investment firm with a diverse portfolio of entertainment productions and international sports enterprises. Wes has worked on developing and producing various reality shows, scripted dramas, and indie movies. The company's most noteworthy current production is the movie "Girl In Progress" with Eva Mendes. Wes says, "I have definitely found success in my creative and writing contributions to our team’s various projects, as well as on set for a variety of different shoots, both in South Florida and New York City. Check out our website. I've edited most of those videos!" linkedin (July 2012)
Samantha Stark ('11) works as a Corporate Marketing and PR Assistant at Cantor Fitzgerald, L.P. in NYC. In addition to updating internal websites, Samantha organizes corporate conferences and does other PR and marketing work. This year she helped organize Charity Day, an annual event begun to support the families of the firm's 658 employees lost on 9/11 and now benefits dozens of charities around the world. As a student, Samantha was PR intern in the WP and says that the skills she developed in the major have been essential to the her work now. Samantha writes, "I recently applied for a PR Corporate Image award for our work with the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and was nominated as a finalist . . . my writing background assisted in the success of our application. Each day I try to find new ways I can use skills I honed at Syracuse and apply them to my corporate life."linkedin (June 2012)

Alexandra Abrams, Josh Albert, Katherine Belding, Allie Ditkowich, Meghan Donohue, Kortney Kavanagh, John Luposello, Daniel Lyons, James Markowitz, Julie Nascone, Danielle Quigley, Maria Sanfeliu-Cruz, Ghilianie Soto, Margaret Spinosa, Soriana Stern, Nathan Wellner, and Benjamin Zender. (May 2012)
An English teacher in Jacksonville, Florida, Alonna Berry ('11) is working for Teach for America, where she works with 150 ninth graders every day. Her long term goals include attending law school to become an attorney, and eventually, a judge. “I left the Writing Program knowing I could do anything I wanted and wasn't afraid to move forward. The Writing Program opened my eyes of the injustices of the education system through my Auburn Prison internship. The most important lesson the Writing Program gave me is to take risks. I don’t think I would be in Teach for America if it were not for the Writing Program and tutoring inmates at Auburn Correctional Facility.” linkedin (May 2012) —Soriana Stern, WP intern
As an AmeriCorp Academic Advisor for the University of Rochester's Kearns Center for Leadership and Diversity in the Arts, Sciences and Engineering, Audrey Burns ('10) has developed a College and Career Center at a Rochester high school and coordinates tutoring and programming with University of Rochester staff, students, and faculty. She says, “The Writing Program has given me the experience and skills that make me stand out professionally and have the drive to develop innovative programming for the University of Rochester community.” She also maintains her love of writing and has been published in the Chicago literary magazine Children, Churches & Daddies and featured in the Democrat and Chronicle's Young Professionals Series. linkedin (May 2012)
Living in NYC, Justin Simon ('10), is a Media Planner at Universal McCann and creator and editor of men's lacrosse blog College Crosse; he also recently took on the role of editor in chief of Sportsideo, a new social networking site for the sports world, tracking over 100 different sports. In this new role, he is in charge of all the bloggers on the site and oversees all the written content on the site. His long term goals include learning more in advertising and seeing Sportsideo grow into the premier destination and social networking site for the sports world. "We want to redefine what is possible inside the sports community." Justin says, "The Writing Program truly opened my eyes to a lot of types of writing that I never thought I would see myself doing . . . it broadened my horizons and made me a stronger writer . . . and I thank all the professors for that." linkedin (April 2012)
As an academic tutor at SU, Michelle Giordano ('11) works with the Athletics department, assisting students enrolled in the Communication and Rhetorical Studies (CRS) program, and she also tutors privately in a variety of subjects.
Michelle will begin graduate study in CRS this fall. Her long-term goals include pursuing a PhD in composition and rhetoric, teaching higher education, and continuing to write. She encourages writing majors to "make diverse choices in their electives (creative writing, professional writing, etc.)." In her work as a tutor, Michelle employs strategies and theories that she learned in WRT 331 and other writing courses: "The analytical and composition skills I developed in the writing program help me to help students—no matter the subject matter." (April 2012)
Al Ortiz ('09) works as a senior staff writer for Ballotpedia, an interactive almanac of state politics that seeks to cultivate thriving citizenship through the free and open sharing of information. Reporting on different kinds of direct democracy in states such as California, Arizona, and Oregon, Al has worked closely with state governments, writing about developments in news articles and analysis reports. He also writes a weekly report called the “Tuesday Count,” which offers more than 1,000 subscribers descriptions of developments regarding state ballot proposals.  Al writes, “I am always excited to see my articles and my colleagues' articles cited by amazing publications like the New York Times, LA Times, and Wall Street Journal.” linkedin (March 2012)
As an Editorial Assistant for Cengage Learning, an educational publishing company based in Boston, Alicia Landsberg ('10), says her responsibilities include coordinating manuscript reviews, communicating with authors, and overseeing the development and production of textbooks and accompanying ancillaries. Alica credits working with Steve Parks and New City Community Press with encouraging her to pursue a career in publishing: "The Writing Program equipped me with the creative and critical thinking needed to work through the mulitfaceted publication process, where the rules are scarcely set in stone and solutions to problems rarely black and white." In her spare time, Alica manages to blog regularly and to publish travel articles about Boston. linkedin (March 2012)
It's been less than a year since Kuan Luo, the 2011 recipient of the prestigious Carol Lipson Outstanding Major Award, graduated with degrees in Graphic Design and Writing and Rhetoric. But in that time she has certainly been busy, and she recently took some time to share her accomplishments and reflect on her work in the Writing Program. Kuan is currently employed as a Mobile Designer at The Washington Post, where she works on iPhone and iPad app interface design for the paper, as well as the mobile version of the site design. In addition to the design itself, Kuan is also responsible for wireframing, information architecture, and other behind-the-scenes work . . . . more. (February 2012)
Brandon Linn (‘10) says “Perhaps I am an example that a Writing degree can take you anywhere” and offers as evidence the variety of work experience he’s gained before and after graduation. Brandon points to his internship at Lionsgate Studio while still a Writing and Rhetoric major as an “awesome” opportunity to pursue his passions. After graduation, he worked for Patch.com, an AOL owned company doing Digital Advertising, which allowed him to interview, photograph, and profile local businesses. Currently, he is “being certified in Human Resource Management and shifting my career once again!” linkedin (February 2012)
Shanté Booker ('11) is currently an editorial intern for a film distribution company in New York City. Her duties include editing, publishing her own clips, creating software manuals for interns and freelance writers, as well as helping to manage the website. Shanté credits the Writing Program with equipping her "with the research, argumentative and critical thinking skills that are pertinent to being a journalist." She also reports she is in the "stressful, yet exciting" process of applying to graduate school in journalism. —Cassie Marie White, intern (February 2012)
AJ Willingham ('09) lives in Atlanta, GA, which suits her just fine.After working as a Video Journalist at CNN for a while, she now writes for the brand new HLNtv.com website, covering "silly things like reality TV, political squabbles, and woodland animals stuck in swimming pools," she says, "Thankfully, the world is full of silly things." She also sings with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus and performed at Carnegie Hall in Fall 2010. AJ says she has "pickled and smoked all of the delicious knowledge the incredible people at the Writing Program were kind enough to share with me" and promises to use it at a later date.  (January 2012)
Victoria Arnold ('10) sends her best to the WP from Thailand! After graduation, Victoria worked with Steve Parks as a Community Research Fellow on community organizing and advocacy projects, including the establishment of the Gifford Street Community Press. She moved with her fiancee to Thailand in July 2011 to explore opportunities in Asia and to be closer to her father and the Thai branch of her family. Victoria was hired as the Assistant Marketing Communications Manager for the Royal Cliff Hotels Group in August. She says, "During the interview they were extremely impressed with my background as a Writing major, . . . . I was hired over other candidates who were PR and Marketing majors because I could write and work well in a challenging and changing environment." (January 2012)
Celeste Little ('09) recently earned her Master's in Magazine, Newspaper, and Online Journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. During the summer of 2011, she wrote for Syracuse Woman magazine and was published in the May/June and September/ October issues. After graduation, Celeste was accepted into the SU's College of Law and spent a year (2009-2010) there before deciding to pursue graduate work in journalism. She is now back in her hometown, New York City, and on the job market, "I'm looking for a job in magazines for a while, but eventually I want to be in broadcasting. I'm hoping to be in front of the camera once I get a little bit more training. Ideally I'll end up working on an urban beat at a local news station or going abroad to cover foreign affairs." linkedin (December 2011)
Adrienne Becker (’11) is packing her bags and using her experience abroad to help jumpstart her career. Landing a job with GeoVisions, Adrienne has the opportunity to teach English to children in South Korea. GeoVisions, which was established in 2001, seeks to help children in various countries improve their English speaking skills. Excited to experience a new culture and begin a new chapter in her life, Adrienne is planning on living in South Korea for a year and is set to teach for 30 hours a week. Using her experience abroad, paired with the foundation the Writing Program has given her, Adrienne feels she is prepared to fulfill her duties. “[The Writing Program] really has taught me to be more aware of the English language: how I use it and how other cultures use it, so it's definitely a foundation I can bring to Korea when I'm teaching.” linkedin (December 2011) —Cassie Marie White, WP intern
Andrew Farah ('09) completed a MA in Information Management from SU's iSchool in May 2011 and is founder of Rounded Development and WeAreMobile.co—both companies specializing in mobile web application development—and Chief Information Officer at AppFury.com. Andrew continues to serve as a technical mentor for the iSchool and is leading Spring Break in Silicone Valley 2012, a trip—open to all SU students—to expose a handful of students to companies that shape technology. Andrew and Dori Olivia Neff were married this June in Hendricks Chapel and reside in Syracuse. linkedin (November 2011)
Joanna Rozansky ('10) is a Digital Search Strategist at Wieden+ Kennedy NYC working on ABC Family, Disney XD, and Jordan accounts. She creates and maintains all the Search Engine Marketing campaigns and runs paid advertising across Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter; she also helped develop a blogger outreach program for ABC Family. "When I discovered the Writing and Rhetoric major," she says, "I found a perfect mix of writing rhetorically and exploring digital media. I was able to combine my passions for writing and production in my coursework." Future aspirations include living in Australia and pursuing production. linkedin  (November 2011)
After working as a publisher at Mediaplanet, Bari Cohn (’10) moved on to global media agency Universal McCann, where she was recently promoted and now works as the only print buyer for magazine and newspaper ad placement for all of Johnson & Johnson’s non-beauty brands, including everything from consumer care to nutritionals to over-the-counter and direct-to-consumer drugs.  The position involves negotiating rates and positioning of advertisements and creating large campaigns.  “Although my job description doesn’t include major forms of writing,” Bari says, “I’ve been able to use parts of my college education in my negotiations, and I’ve become a great arguer!” linkedin (October 2011)
Francesca Merwin (’11), a Syracuse University Engagement Fellow, currently works as Communications and Marketing Coordinator for the Connective Corridor.  Her responsibilities include producing a monthly newsletter, sending email updates about the Corridor’s many construction projects, planning events, and coordinating public art projects.  Francesca is also taking a course in magazine, newspaper and online journalism through Newhouse and a graphics course through the iSchool. She writes, “As an Engagement Fellow, I knew I wanted to use my experience with writing as my unique way to engage with the Syracuse community. I am hoping to segue my Engagement Year into a job in the magazine or publishing industries on the west coast.” linkedin (October 2011)
Caitlin Heikkila (2009 Outstanding Major Award) has recently pickedup and moved from Manhattan to Brooklyn and is conveniently working a few blocks away from her apartment at a PR & Marketing firm called Mother Nature & Partners. This company focuses their efforts on "the environment and corporate responsibility," which is something that Caitlin says is important to her. Caitlin spends most of her time writing marketing materials for clients in addition to helping companies become more eco-friendly. [more]. linkedin (October 2010)
"I have no doubts that where I am today has been completely shaped and informed by my involvement in the Writing Program," Mary Gallagher, 2008 Carol Lipson Outstanding Major Award winner, states, and it seems that Mary shares the same passion for writing consulting as Caitlin does. Today, Mary works as a coordinator in the Center for Academic Success at the Universities at Shady Grove in Maryland. [more] linkedin  (October 2010)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you a Writing and Rhetoric Major Alum? Get in touch and let us know what you've been up to. We'd love to hear from you. And email us a pic to writing@syr.edu!