THE LATEST SHOUT-OUTS: WESTPHAL STUDENT, FACULTY, STAFF, AND ALUMNI ACHIEVEMENTS
CELEBRATE THE STUDENTS, FACULTY, STAFF AND ALUMNI OF THE WESTPHAL COLLEGE OF MEDIA ARTS & DESIGN IN THIS ROUND-UP OF RECENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS.
April 28, 2021
Faculty & Staff Shout-outs
Beth Quinn, adjunct faculty member, gave a "Flash Talk" at the Global Research Symposium entitled “Material Innovation and the Impermanence of Fashion.” Beth highlighted some of her research on bioplastics, mycelium forms and kombucha leather and talked about how this work is being incorporated in the accessories class that she is teaching this term.
Emil Polyak, Assistant Professor in the Department of Digital Media, gave a “Flash Talk” at the Global Research Symposium titled “Homeostatis, a speculative, interactive visual experience.” Emil was quoted in an April 28 Lifewire post about new technology being developed to prevent motion sickness when using VR. Link to story
Professor of Music Industry Toby Seay’s paper “The mediation paradox of the sonic space on record” will be presented at the 2nd International Conference on Sonorities Research. Toby is also one of five invited panelist for a session called, “What the Masters Teach Us: Multitrack Recordings in Research and Education” at the AES 2021 International Audio Education Conference. All panelists support a multi-faceted approach to using multi-track materials in music production pedagogy. Together they will identify a number of considerations and recommendations for students, educators, archivists, record companies and practitioners.
Blaise Tobia, Professor Emeritus, was mentioned in an April 9 Philadelphia Inquirer article about how CETA, the federal Comprehensive Employment and Training Act, helped stabilize arts organizations by finding jobs for many artists in communities across the city. Read the full story here.
Program Director of Virtual Reality & Immersive Media Nick Jushchyshyn’s talk, "Virtual Production for Remote Teaching Modalities" has been accepted as part of the Educator’s Forum program at SIGGRAPH 2021. SIGGRAPH is the premier conference and exhibition in computer graphics and interactive techniques, with the 2021 conference planned for August 9-13.
Alan Greenberger, Vice President for Real Estate and Facilities, was mentioned in an April 13 Philadelphia Inquirer article about the new 5th Street subway murals, “Portal to Discovery” – which tells the city’s history. Read more here.
On April 16, Sandra Parks, Assistant Teaching Professor and Dance Program Director, was a panelist on Standing in Solidarity: A Frank Conversation about Anti-Asian Hate Crimes, a discussion addressing the rise of anti-Asian hate crimes through a conversation grounded in the experiences of Asian and Asian-American students, faculty, and professional staff members in the Drexel community.
Jason Varney’s, adjunct instructor, still life demo for the Princeton Day School’s students in collaboration with stylist Kristi Hunter, chef Eric Leveillee, and their teacher was chosen for inclusion in American Photography 37.
Adjunct instructor of Art & Art History Rami George was interviewed by Laurel V. McLaughlin for Art Papers.
Art & Art History Professor Jen Blazina’s newest glass work will be included in Glass 49, 50 Years of Habatat. This exhibition is celebrating the 50th anniversary of Habatat Galleries of Detroit. The exhibition opened April 28th and will run through September.
Nick Jushchyshyn, Program Director of Virtual Reality & Immersive Media, was a panelist on an April 21 Vicon Industry Panel Webinar Series event discussing “Educating the Next Mocap Generation.”
Associate Professor of Design & Merchandising Alphonso McClendon was an invited panelist for a Fashion Culture Online Event: From Louis Armstrong to Dizzy Gillespie: Jazz and Black Glamour. The conversation was moderated by Museum of FIT Assistant Curator Elizabeth Way featuring dynamic exchanges between historian Alphonso McClendon and vintage performer and vintage style activist Dandy Wellington on the social, racial and political influence of 1920s jazz. McClendon is the author of Fashion and Jazz: Dress, Identity and Subcultural Improvisation. View the event along with historical jazz images here.
The Design & Merchandising (D&M) program has partnered with JOOR, a data analytics company headquartered in NYC, which provides the world’s premier digital platform for wholesale management connecting brands and retail/ecommerce buyers. Joor supports 8,600 brands and connects with 200k retailers in 144 countries. As the first academic partner, D&M students are developing expertise with the platform in the course Digital Wholesale Operations and are pairing with and consulting to local fashion brands to create virtual showroom visions, market profiles, visual assets and product assortments demonstrating the benefits of smart, sustainable digital wholesale in fashion, beauty and homeware. Learn more about JOOR and their partnership with RAISEfashion to provide emerging Black Designers with tools and mentorship.
Assistant Professor of Design & Merchandising Chris Baeza and Assistant Professor of Product Design Raja Schaar lead a workshop at the VENTUREWELL OPEN 2021 conference on March 17th titled Design, Disaster, and Impact: Connecting Cli-Fi, Ethics, and Social Entrepreneurship to the Future. The virtual workshop modeled the use of science fiction, or more specifically Climate Fiction case studies, Ethical Analysis, and Social Entrepreneurship Canvases, developed by the authors, to study the ethical implications of design.
Assistant Professor of Design & Merchandising Chris Baeza and Adjunct Professor of Fashion Design Elizabeth Quinn presented their paper Transforming the Fashion Industry by: The Evolution of Design & Merchandising Education on March 21st at the 23rd International Conference, Sustainable Innovation 2021: Accelerating Sustainability in Fashion, Clothing, Sportswear & Accessories, hosted by the Centre for Sustainable Design at the University for the Creative Arts in the UK. The presentation explored the exchange of ideas and intersections between the fields of ethics and entrepreneurship in design and merchandising education and asserts the importance of this exchange regarding how problems in the fashion industry are understood, how solutions are executed and how education develops the next generation of professionals for the fashion and textile industries.
Lewis Colburn, associate professor in Visual Studies, has an interview included in the book Strange Devices by Joshua Reiman, which will be published this May. The interview is from 2016, and was originally published in Sculpture magazine. The book is a compilation of interviews that Reiman conducted for Sculpture over the past several years, along with two new essays.
Michael Froio, facility manager and adjunct professor of Photography, and alumna Nicole Schwartz (Photography ‘14) were each awarded a New Jersey Individual Artist Fellowship from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Link to Article.
Brent White, director of the Drexel Jazz Orchestra and adjunct Music faculty member, has been awarded the Francis Johnson Fellowship by the Library Company of Philadelphia’s Innovation Fellowship Program.
Student & Alumni Shout-outs
Lisa Visco Getz, Arts Administration and Museum Leadership alum, has been named Co-Executive Director of Main Line Art Center in Haverford, Pennsylvania.
Congratulations to an exciting team of Westphal first years for winning third place in the first ever College Game Jam with their innovative dating sim-platformer LoveWire! Check out the game and the team here.
Alumna Olivia Kelly (MS Retail & Merchandising ‘19) launched on her own active and e-commerce store, CB40, on April 14, 2021. View CB40 here.
Ryan Cole, AIA, NCARB (BARCH Architecture ‘14) was featured in DrexelNOW about fellow alumna's Samantha Rivera Joseph (Faculty/Staff; MPH, Public Health, Dornsife, 2012) efforts saving the former headquarters of the Philadelphia Sunday Sun, a historic local Black newspaper. Mr. Cole has offered pro-bono architectural support to help restore the building. Mr. Cole is a senior architectural professional at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP. Link to Article
Daniel Eason (BS Film & Video Production ‘07) recently opened Vision Stages, a 36,000 square foot soundstage designed for film, television and commercial productions, located in Troutdale, OR. Mr. Eason previously worked in film and television production in New York and Los Angeles, where he worked on titles such as The Closer and To All the Boys: Always and Forever. Most recently, he has worked as a location manager, finding and making arrangements for locations for films. Link to Article
Anne Hagan (MS Arts Administration ‘98), executive director of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia and Anne Ewers (HD, 2019) president and CEO of the Kimmel Center, were quoted in a Philadelphia Inquirer article where they discussed plans to welcome back live audiences fully in the fall. Link to Article
Kobita Mukherjee (MS Interior Design ‘03) joined BKV Group, a multidisciplinary design firm, as director of interior design and associate partner for its Washington, DC, practice site. Prior to joining BKV Group, Ms. Mukherjee spent 18 years at a Maryland interior architectural firm. Her tenure with the firm began in 2003, when she joined the agency as a designer. Link to Article
Shannon Remaley NCIDQ, LEED (BS Interior Design '02), a principal and the senior living practice leader at Meyer Design, was quoted in a Philadelphia Business Journal article regarding the new $22.5 million senior living facility in Exton, PA. As the facility was under construction during the pandemic, Meyer Design was able to make alterations to the design accommodating for Covid-19 health and safety measures. Link to Article
Christina Salvitti, NCIDQ (BS Interior Design ‘15) has completed the requirements of the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) and is now a NCIDQ Certified Interior Designer. Ms. Salvitti is an interior designer at Bernardon, an interior design firm. Link to Article
On April 15, Pharaoh Hound Games launched Sons of Ra, an award-winning competitive tower defense game. Play solo or join your friends in this unique strategic experience. Congratulations Drexel alums, Jeff Mostyn, Mark Hurley, Michael Heffner, and Joseph Brown! Sons of Ra is out on Steam now.
Product Design senior BreAnna Bechtold was selected as an IDSA SMA Northeast District finalist.
Fifth-year Architecture student Kiera Townsend was recognized among the 2021 International Berkeley Undergraduate Prize for Architectural Design essay winners. Kiera’s essay, The Urgency of Architectural Liberation, earned her the Third Place prize in a crop of 258 entries. Read Kiera’s winning essay here. Learn more about the prize here.
Two students from Drexel’s Interior Architecture & Design program, Hadiya Bynoe-Seabron and Tiffany England, were chosen for the inaugural 2021 Metropolis Future 100. Launched by the popular Metropolis Magazine, this recognition honors top interior design and architecture students graduating this year. Read more.
Max Kaiserman (BS Film & Video ‘12), director of marketing and revenue at Kaiserman Co. Inc., was quoted in a Philadelphia Business Journal article. Despite the pandemic, Olde Sproul Shopping Village, a shopping center in Springfield, PA owned by Kaiserman Co., has been able to overcome its 65% storefront vacancy with new restaurants and stores. Link to Article
Rachel McCausland (MS Arts Administration ‘14), vice president of development at Opera Philadelphia, was recognized in the Philadelphia Business Journal's "40 under 40". Link to Article
Aga Sokolow (BA Architecture ‘13) was featured in the Philadelphia Business Journal's "People on the Move." Aga passed the Architect Registration Exam and is now a registered architect. She is an architect at Bernardon at the firm's Wilmington, DE office. Link to Article
Fashion Design major Carla Pierini received second place in the Concept 2 Consumer Design Competition hosted by the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC). Carla will receive a cash prize, gift certificates toward fabric dyeing equipment, and a one-year membership to AATCC. Congratulations to Carla on this outstanding design achievement!
Third-year Entertainment & Arts Management major Jarod Watson was elected Student Body President of Drexel University for the 2021-2022 academic year. Jarod currently serves as Student Body Vice President. Congratulations to Jarod on this new role in student government!
SplitSide Games, Game Design & Production alums, have partnered with Daedalic Entertainment, a video game developer and publisher from Hamburg, Germany. to publish Fling to the Finish. In Fling to the Finish, teams of two players race through colorful, chaotic obstacle courses while tethered by a stretchy elastic rope.
Lara Bros, Art History '21, has published the website for her thesis project on the posters from the People's Paper Coop. Visit the website at www.freeourmamas.com, where you can ask questions, track the fundraiser for the bail fund, and learn more about each of the three posters Lara analyzed. Lara's paper will be available on the website and she will be presenting on the posters at several events throughout the month.
Jahna Auerbach (Photography ‘16; MS, Library & Information Science, CCI ‘21) is an Archivist Assistant at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA), where she recently completed an NEH grant-funded project where visitors can interact with an online portal to learn more about artist John Rhoden. Link to Exhibition.
Ryan Cole, AIA, NCARB (BARCH ‘14) was featured in DrexelNOWabout Dornsife alumna Samantha Rivera Joseph’s efforts saving the former headquarters of the Philadelphia Sunday Sun, a historic local Black newspaper. Mr. Cole has offered pro-bono architectural support to help restore the building. Mr. Cole is a senior architectural professional at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP. Link to Article and Link to LinkedIn.
Alexander Gallegos (Game Design & Production ‘20) joined Cesium, a computer software company that provides a platform for creating 3D applications based on real-world geospatial data, as the 3D technical artist. Previously, Mr. Gallegos worked in VR and AR (virtual reality and augmented reality) development at Wrestler, a content-creation studio in New Zealand. While at Drexel, he was part of the team that created Resilience,a serious game designed to raise awareness and foster empathy for refugees that won the Best Student Game at G4C 2020. Link to Article.
Lindsey Glasser (Entertainment & Arts Management ‘17) and her sister Courtney and brother Robert Glasser, who are triplets, founded Grey Bandit, shortly after finishing their undergraduate education in 2017. They were featured in "How Grey Bandit Used Influencer Marketing to Reach $5 Million In Sales," in Forbes. Less than four years later, their post-college project is a multi-million-dollar business, hitting $5 million in sales. Grey Bandit is a clothing brand that pairs confidence building, mental health, and fashion. The company stemmed from an online shopping affinity. Grey Bandit grew slowly, amassing between 3,000 and 4,000 Instagram followers in their first few months of operating in 2017. Now, their Instagram has 165,000 followers. Link to Article.
Anna Greenwald (Music Industry ‘15), founder and CEO of the Philadelphia-based organizational wellbeing company On the Goga, has been named to the Philly Startup Leaders' Board. Philly Startup Leaders offers mentorship, education, and networking to local startups, with a goal of growing the number of entrepreneurs and startups in Greater Philadelphia. Link to Article.
Anne Hagan (MS Arts Administration ‘98), executive director of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, was quoted in a Philadelphia Inquirer article where they discussed plans to welcome back live audiences fully in the fall. Link to Article.
Kobita Mukherjee (MS Interior Design ‘03) joined BKV Group, a multidisciplinary design firm, as director of interior design and associate partner for its Washington, DC, practice site. Prior to joining BKV Group, Ms. Mukherjee spent 18 years at a Maryland interior architectural firm. Her tenure with the firm began in 2003, when she joined the agency as a designer. Link to Article.
Peter Murray (Photography ‘13) joined the lifestyle brand Spartina 449 as lead photographer. Previously he served as a photographer for the clothing brand Anthropologie. In his most recent freelance work, he photographed the chef and owner of the restaurant The Grey for The Local Palate's spring issue. Link to Article and Link to LinkedIn.
Katie J. Reilly (Music Industry ‘11) wrote an op-ed piece titled "Texas Republican Leadership Failed Disabled People During Winter Storm Disaster" that was published in Teen Vogue magazine. Ms. Reilly is the campaign director at UltraViolet, an organization dedicated to fighting sexism in politics and government to media and pop culture. Link to Article.
Shannon Remaley NCIDQ, LEED (Interior Design ‘02), a principal and the senior living practice leader at Meyer Design, was quoted in a Philadelphia Business Journal article regarding the new $22.5 million senior living facility in Exton, PA. As the facility was under construction during the pandemic, Meyer Design was able to make alterations to the design accommodating for Covid-19 health and safety measures. Link to Article.
Christina Salvitti, NCIDQ (Interior Design ‘15) has completed the requirements of the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) and is now a NCIDQ Certified Interior Designer. Ms. Salvitti is an interior designer at Bernardon, an interior design firm. Link to Article and Link to LinkedIn.
Carroll A. Thomas (Design ‘78) joined the board of directors of MxD. Ms. Thomas retired in 2020 as director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology's (NIST) Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP). She currently serves on the boards of the Information Technology Innovation Foundation and the State Department Federal Credit Union. Link to Article.
Cassandra Wang's (Photography ‘16) photography of New York City's East Village Hawaiian restaurant, noreetuh, was featured in a 9-page spread in Athleisure Magazine. Ms. Wang also recently joined the mental health care center, HeartShare St. Vincent's Services, as a case planner. Link to Article and Link to LinkedIn.