How did you discover your passion for what you do, and what opportunities have helped shape your career?

I have been interested in art since I was a very young child. My parents fully supported my interests and encouraged my talents, for which I am forever grateful. While taking art classes in high school, I had really wonderful teachers who took art seriously and let me know that a career in the arts was possible. They pushed me and encouraged me to get my work critiqued on National Portfolio Day starting my sophomore year. This led to me getting accepted to an art college and being taught by more amazing teachers who taught me everything I know. We had awesome opportunities like visiting artists, opportunities to sell our work, sponsored trips to go to the annual ceramics conference and awarded scholarships to summer art workshops. The friendships and working relationships that I have made in the arts have been foundational in leading to new jobs and opportunities in my career.


Who has been an invaluable mentor for your professional career? What did you learn from them?

My high school art teacher Marjorie Renno helped me grow not only in my artistic skills but also in my confidence that I could be a professional artist. She has given me tips and tricks for applying to and doing art shows, created an artist residency program so I could have studio access after college and has written me recommendations for artistic opportunities. She is a dear friend and an amazing mentor on how to be a successful artist and an effective teacher. I was honored to exhibit work alongside her in the 2019 exhibition “Teacher/Artist/Mentor” held at CCSU.


How do you make sure you stay connected with your professional network?

I have an incredibly cute mini filing cabinet full of artist business cards. I follow many of my fellow artists through social media channels and try to engage with them on relevant opportunities. I try to reach out to my past professors and teachers for advice when needed and to inform them of opportunities we have available through my job for their current students.


How have friendships helped you professionally? Is there a friend (or Delta Zeta sister) that has been behind you every step of the way on your career journey?

I actually saw the impact of this when I applied to my recent artist residency. Unbeknownst to me, the new ceramics director just finished his grad school program with one of my art school friends from college. When he saw that we had gone to the same college, he called her up to ask about me, and she happily vouched that I would be a great fit. Having a great friend like that who would vouch for me, without me ever asking her to do so, meant so much to me and probably helped seal the deal of me being chosen! Aside from that instance, my friends, many of whom are my DZ sisters, have been my biggest supporters and have always encouraged me to keep going, even when I felt doubtful. Their confidence in me has been invaluable.