Katie Peters & Taylor Viles– Editor-in-Chief & Sports Editor
On November 5, current students and faculty joined Lasell alumni on Zoom to hear advice on the industry during the inaugural School of Communications and the Arts (SoCA) Alumni Network Zoom Hour.
Alumni listed for the panel included Margaret Brochu (‘20), Allie Clancy (‘20), Drew Gundlach (‘08), Emma Helstorm (‘20), Mike Luce (‘14), Justin Miller (‘14), Amanda Mitchell (‘19), Megan Palumbo (‘19), Lindsey Tavarozzi (‘16), Emely Varosky (‘10), and Zac Vierra (‘13.)
Usually, the main networking event for communication and arts students is “SoCA Day” or in the past, Com Day, and occurs in the spring. According to Interim Dean of Communications Meryl Perlson, due to COVID-19, the spring event has been put on hold and replaced in part with this one. The department still plans to continue the regularly scheduled SoCA Day in the spring of 2022.
“The idea was spontaneous during a meeting of faculty from SoCA,” said Associate Professor of Journalism Marie Franklin. “We were brainstorming ways to use Zoom more creatively and the idea of a virtual networking event with alumni was born.”
Franklin, with the help of Assistant Professor of Art and Graphic Design Deborah Baldizar, orchestrated the evening’s proceedings. They, assisted by three undergraduates, asked the alumni questions.
The event was Osowski’s first networking event in college. “I really enjoyed it,” she said. “I was surprised to have this opportunity so soon in my college experience. I liked that I had the opportunity to ask questions as well especially to the large group, it wasn’t just one on one.”
Recent alum Clancy is fresh into the professional world. In just a few months, she was able to land a job as a Post Production Assistant for the show “Alone” on the History Channel. She shared her thoughts on being the one to give advice when only a year ago, she was receiving it. “I feel like sometimes I get imposter syndrome, like, I’m not totally qualified to give all this advice yet,” said Clancy. “But I think that what I’ve learned is important.”
Throughout her undergraduate career, Clancy was proactive about getting involved, securing an internship at NESN the summer following her junior year. Additionally, she worked as a camera-person at TD Garden during her senior year.
Former 1851 Chronicle Co-Editor-in- Chief, Palumbo, accepted a job with Greenough Brand Storytellers in Watertown following graduation. When the pandemic hit, like so many companies, Greenough was forced to let people go. “[I] was back to ground zero, and had to reapply to all different jobs under the sun and take interviews that I had no idea what I was talking about,” she said.
Now working as a Community Engagement Project Coordinator for Citizens Bank in Providence, Palumbo said, “When I got laid off, it was kind of a sigh of relief because I was so micromanaged… I literally found the perfect fit.”
Like Palumbo, other alumni’s positions shifted due to the pandemic. “I was thrown kind of right into things because I was working at a church during COVID season,” said Helstorm, who now works as a graphic designer for Lifesong Church. “Not being able to have as much time as I like to has been kind of hard, but it’s kind of just being flexible and available,” she said.
Before leaving the Zoom meeting, former WLAS Station Manager Miller shared his closing thoughts. “We were all in the same position as you guys are right now,” he said. “Don’t think that anything that you want to do, any dream that you have, is too small. Right now you’re in the perfect position because you’re in some of the best years of your life. So embrace every situation that you’re in… If you do and you get involved with anything and everything, you will be very successful in your careers.”