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Alumni & Friends - Penn State College of Arts and Architecture

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Be involved & connected!

Support the arts and design

Alumni and friends are an integral part of the College of Arts and Architecture family. Thanks to your involvement, we are able to support students and faculty in their studies and in their creative and research pursuits. Graduating does not take you out of the equation – it just means there are new ways for you to stay involved and connected.

A&A Alumni Groups

We love our alumni volunteers. The Arts and Architecture Alumni Society and departmental alumni groups serve as vital resources for students and fellow alumni. Networking, mentoring, connecting across disciplines – these are just a few ways you can be involved. Contact Joyce Hoffman, director of constituent engagement, to learn more.

Being involved? It’s just an email away!
College of Arts and Architecture alumni and friends gather together for a picture during a tailgate party on blue and white weekend.

Affiliate Program Groups

APGs are groups of alumni who share a common interest in a particular academic unit or department. There are no dues to join the department-based groups – by being a graduate, all alumni are automatically members. The APGs in the College of Arts and Architecture are focused on issues that are uniquely valued by their own departments, and each is governed by its own board of directors. The College of Arts and Architecture is also home to the Alumni Blue Band Association APG, because of its unique relationship with the School of Music.

To become actively involved in an APG, contact Joyce Hoffman in the Arts and Architecture Alumni Office jeh7@psu.edu, or get in touch directly with the group’s current contact person listed below.

Architecture

Membership in the Architecture Alumni (AAG) is automatic for all graduates of Penn State Architecture with no dues. The group exists to help provide a connection with alumni, and the board of directors acts as an informal advisory group to the department. By expanding the participation of alumni relationships, the group hopes to promote interaction between alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends for the benefit and ongoing improvement of the department.

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Board

Members Position
David Schrader (1991) President
Bob Holland (1973) Vice President
Sara Pettit (2009) Secretary–Treasurer
Marilia Rodrigues (2002) Immediate Past President
Alex Donahue (2013) Representative to Arts & Architecture Alumni Society
Kyle Fauth (2007)
Matthew Graham (2012)
Rob McClure (2000)
Danielle Mitchell (2015)
Mehrdad Hadighi Department Head
Loukas Kalisperis Faculty Representative
Patricka Kucker Director of Stuckeman School
Joyce Hoffman Director of Constituent Engagement
Stella Murray (2019) Recent Graduate

Recent + Upcoming

The Architecture Alumni Group (AAG) met most recently on campus on February 8, following Stuckeman Career Day. The meeting kicked off with lunch and a joint meeting with the Landscape Architecture Alumni Group. The group heard an informational report from school director Patricia Kucker and explored areas of mutual interest to both groups. Following the combined time together, the group met to discuss among other things, the mentoring program, the alumni group’s newsletter, and ideas for welcoming new graduates into the alumni family.

Art History

The Art History Alumni Circle was established to help foster the alumni community and promote interaction between alumni and the department by communicating alumni achievements, departmental news and events; and supporting mentoring and networking opportunities for alumni, students, and faculty.

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Recent + Upcoming

This group is seeking some leadership! Meeting in person is not required; arrangements for occasional Zoom or Skype meetings can be arranged. A mix of art history undergrad and graduate alumni would be desirable; relatively recent (past 10-15 years) alumni are particularly encouraged to consider how you might support the department through your service. If interested in the Art History Alumni Circle, please contact Joyce Hoffman in the A&A Alumni Office.

Graphic Design

The Graphic Design Alumni Group was established with the purposes of providing a forum where alumni of the program can continue to grow professionally and personally, and to provide a way for alumni to stay connected to each other and the program. The group helps encourage and support educational and career opportunities for students in the field of graphic design. Membership in the Graphic Design alumni group is open without membership dues, to all graduates of the program.

Connect

Join the Graphic Design Alumni Listserv by contacting the Arts and Architecture Alumni Office.

Recent + Upcoming

This group is seeking some leadership! Board meetings can be held periodically by Zoom or Skype, requiring no travel for the majority of board members. However, one member is needed who can fulfill the responsibility of acting as the group’s representative on the College of Arts & Architecture Alumni Society Board, which meets three times per year in State College. It would be desirable for the group representative to be able to attend at least one meetings per year in person, though Zoom is always offered as an option. Interested in learning more? Contact Joyce Hoffman in the A&A Alumni Office.

Landscape Architecture

Membership in the Landscape Architecture Alumni Group (L.Arch. APG) is automatic for all graduates of the program with no dues. The group exists to provide a connection with alumni, and the board of directors acts as an informal advisory group to the department. The L.Arch. APG was the first academic department-based alumni group in the College of Arts and Architecture, and the group provides strong support to current students in numerous ways, including a mentorship program. The group has also established a program endowment that will provide funds in perpetuity to be used to benefit students. At this time, the endowment proceeds are being utilized to help offset the costs associated with field trips. The board of directors meets regularly on campus, approximately three times per year.

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Board

Members Position
Lisa Thomas (1981) President
Stacy Fisher (1979) Vice President
Julie Cantola Kirsch (2009) Secretary–Treasurer
Ken Mizerny (1970) Immediate Past President
Katie Kovalchik (2015)
Terrie Brightman (2004)
Jim DeTuerk (1961)
Josh Lippert (2011)
Evan Stone (1986)
Eliza Pennypacker Department Head
Bonj Szczygiel Faculty Representative
Patricka Kucker Director of Stuckeman School
Joyce Hoffman Director of Constituent Engagement
Stella Murray (2019) Recent Graduate

Recent + Upcoming

The group’s most recent meeting was held on campus on February 8, the day after Stuckeman Career Day. The meeting kicked off with a joint luncheon and meeting withe the Architecture Alumni Group, where the two groups discussed areas of mutual interest and heard an informational report from Stuckeman School Director Patricia Kucker. The group welcomed new board members Katie Kovalchik, Terrie Brightman and Evan Stone to their first meeting.

Music

The Penn State School of Music Affiliate Program Group was founded with the purpose of providing a forum by which alumni can continue to grow professionally and personally and stay connected with each other and to the School. The group works with the Director of the School of Music in remaining informed about the affairs of the School, encourages and supports educational and career opportunities for students in the field of music, and helps foster a sense of pride in the School of Music while enhancing its reputation and prestige.

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Recent + Upcoming

This group is looking for additional volunteers to serve as board members for the alumni group.  Meetings can be held by teleconference, Zoom or Skype, and at the collective convenience of the Board and the Director of the School. Carol Poblete currently represents the group on the Arts and Architecture Alumni Society Board. If you are interested in the possibility of serving on the alumni group board, please contact Carol or Joyce Hoffman in the A&A Alumni Office.

Establish a legacy of your support for our School of Music family by dedicating a seat in our new hall.

Theatre

Membership in the Theatre Alumni Group is automatic for all graduates of the Penn State School of Theatre with no dues. The group exists to help provide connections between alumni, and between alumni and current students. The board of directors meets by telephone regularly, to discuss the group’s initiatives. In its relatively short time of existence, the Theatre Alumni Group has already been recognized by the Penn State Alumni Association for its exceptional alumni/student interaction programming. The board is currently governed by the board of directors listed below.

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Board

Members Position
Carolyn Quinn (2016 BFA)
Robert Schneider (2009 MFA)
Courtney Cavanaugh (2009 BFA)
Kate Pappas (1997)
Jodi Stevens (1990)
Benjamin Nissen (2018 BFA Musical Theatre)
Mike Smanko (1977 MFA)
Allison Lee (1995 BFA)
Mike Karns (2011 BFA)
Becca Suskauer Student Representative
Megan Belgam Student Representative
Rick Lombardo Director, Penn State School of Theatre
Joyce Hoffman Director of Constituent Engagement

Recent + Upcoming

The group is looking for additional members to potentially serve on the board or join a committee! Board member Mike Smanko is spearheading a nomination committee, so if you are interested in the possibility of being involved, please contact Mike.

Visual Arts/Art Education

The School of Visual Alumni Group was founded with the purpose of providing a forum in which alumni of the Penn State School of Visual Arts (SoVA) can stay connected to each other and to the School, remain informed about the affairs of the School and the College. The group hopes to assist the School, as appropriate, in the recruitment of students, and to support and encourage educational and career opportunties for students in the fields of visual arts and art education.

Connect

Recent + Upcoming

News is coming soon about new board members that will help re-launch and invigorate this alumni group to support the School of Visual Arts alumni and student population. Stay tuned!

Blue Band

As an alum of Penn State University and the Blue Band, you have three opportunities to join the Alumni Blue Band Association and support the alumni and current members of the Penn State Marching Blue Band! Complete details about the Alumni Blue Band Association (ABBA) can be found at the ABBA website.

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Woskob gallery showcasing interactive light painting by a participant.

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The mission of the Alumni Association is to connect alumni to the University and to each other, to provide valued services to members, and to support the University’s mission of teaching, research, and service.

Learn more about alumni events, groups, travel, career opportunities, giving, leadership, and so much more. The opportunities are endless.

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Penn State Arts and Architecture is stronger for all of the students, alumni, and friends who are engaged and active contributors to our community!

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