What J/MS Alums are doing now

By Megan Morreale—

 1993

Michele Promaulayko

Promaulayko has been editor in chief of Women’s Health Magazine since 2008. She has grown its platform for healthy women, expanding the magazine’s outreach on health and beauty. She is passionate about women’s health and enjoys her job in the fast-changing world of journalism.

Previously, she had been executive editor of Cosmopolitan magazine, which expanded its outreach to 58 editions internationally throughout her time there. She helped to bring Cosmopolitan to a more modern audience by focusing on specialty beauty issues.

Promaulayko began her career at YM Magazine and later moved to Teen People.

 

1994

Antonio Di Fonzo

Di Fonzo, who is from Elizabeth, showed his acclaimed indie film, “Boyz of Summer,” earlier in the spring at the 2013 New Jersey Film Festival. He appeared at the film’s Q+A session.

The movie follows childhood friends Rocco, Drew and Sal from the gritty city streets of Elizabeth to the Jersey Shore as they reunite. Having returned home for the summer, Rocco, an art student, finds that his visions are suddenly amplified as his dreams compel him to draw what he is seeing and feeling. Meanwhile, the bonds of friendship are tested, as the three young men struggle with the limits of their upbringing and challenges at home. Underscoring their story is a great sound-track that combines indie rock with orchestral compositions.

Di Fonzo’s “day job” is vice principal at Dr. Antonia Pantoja School in Elizabeth.

 

2000

Sharon Hazard

Sharon Hazard

Hazard has a full-time editing position and maintains several other personal writing projects. She just completed writing and researching a book on Catholics in New York City, to be published in 2014 by Square One Publishing.

She is currently working on transcribing the diary of Kate Shippen Roosevelt, the first cousin of Theodore Roosevelt. Having written an article about her wedding in Sea Bright that occurred 100 years ago, Hazard was intrigued when the Roosevelt diary fell into her lap, courtesy of a local woman who had read the article.

“When I arrived, she had the diary carefully placed on her kitchen table, and I immediately knew what a treasure I had come across,” Hazard said.

Hazard is currently spending Tuesdays transcribing the diary with its owner. She shares snippets of it on her blog and has plans to turn her findings into a book.

“On Tuesdays, I can hardly wait to get to her home to begin my journey back in time,” Hazard said. “The diary is chock full of historic details and personal comments on Kate Roosevelt’s life as a New York City matron.”

At the same time, Hazard is also researching and writing a book on the history of the department store in the United States.

 

2002

Sherry Wein

Sherry Wein

A tenured professor at Monmouth University, Wein also graduated from SC&I with a Ph.D. in communication in 2002. Wein focuses her research on how businesses and employees communicate within a company and with outside stakeholders. Wein teaches communication classes at Monmouth and is particularly interested in how part-time workers socialize in their respective companies.

Wein has just begun a YouTube channel, Communication Work, which travels inside different companies to find out what employers are looking for in a recent graduate.

“I want to make videos that show my students what the workplace is like,” Wein said. “I want to bridge the gap between students and the workplace.” The YouTube channel also covers topics from the student’s point of view, aiming to better acquaint students with the workplace before they graduate.

 

2004

Lori Varga Riley

She has become the director of Public Relations, Marketing and Special Events at the Seton Hall University School of Health and Medical Sciences. She previously was an editorial specialist with the Rutgers Department of Alumni Relations and associate alumni editor for Rutgers Magazine.

Prior to working at Rutgers, Lori received an M.A. in Corporate and Public Communication at Seton Hall University. During this time she worked as a graduate assistant in the University’s Department of Public Relations and Marketing, where she served as assistant editor of Seton Hall Magazine and editor of the Pirate Press alumni newsletter.

 

 

2006 Mike

Mike Catapano

Catapano

Catapano is producing his own sitcom, “Scheming the Dream,” through his production company, Catapano Productions. “The sitcom is basically ‘Cheers’ meets ‘Always Sunny in Philadelphia,’ but in a Jersey pizzeria instead of a Boston bar,” Catapano said.

He is a member of the Screen Actors Guild and last year worked as head production assistant on “Good Food America,” a TV show featuring fresh foods expert Chef Nathan Lyon and his culinary adventures in search of the tastiest and healthiest eats across America.

Catapano also worked with Leonardo DiCaprio, the lead actor in the Martin Scorcese film, “Wolf of Wall Street,” out in November. Upcoming: Catapano will shoot another pilot with the same crew as GFA.

 

Lauren Sisler

Sisler, a sports anchor, editor and reporter at WIAT-TV in Birmingham, AL, just won the Alabama Broadcasters Association Best in Broadcasting Award for sportscasters. “It is truly an honor to win such an award,” she said. She thanked her J/MS “family” for helping her “reach great heights.”

Sisler covers the Crimson Tide of the University of Alabama in all sports: football, gymnastics, softball and golf. She also covers sports at Auburn. She has reported on the NASCAR races at Talladega, the Indy at Barber Motorsports Park, and the Regions Tradition PGA Senior Tour.

“Really there is no off season here in Alabama,” she said.

Prior to getting the position at WIAT-TV, Sisler was weekend sports anchor and reporter at WTAP in Parkersburg, West Virginia for two years and spent two years as a photographer/editor at WDBJ7 in her hometown of Roanoke, Virginia.

She also worked for a year at CNBC, where she had her J/MS internship.

 

2007

Eleni Bourinaris-Suarez

Bourinaris-Suarez is getting a master’s degree in the New School’s Urban Policy program as a Peace Corps Fellow. She served in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic from 2009 to 2010 and has taken a leave of absence from New York Law School to pursue her master’s degree. She would like to have a career in international development and human rights law.

 

2008

Nicole Schram

Schram’s 17-minute short film, “Dream Girl,” was screened in April at the Garden State Film Festival. It is about a young man who experiences the most intensely vivid dreams about a woman he has never met before. Until one day, she pops up everywhere he goes in real life. Schram works full time as script supervisor for “The Jimmy Fallon Show” in New York.

 

 

 

Shaun Hinklein

2009

Shaun Hinklein

He is a digital strategist, working with companies to enhance their online presence and develop their brands. Hinklein works with Digital Net Agency in correlation with networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google + in order to ensure the brand is connecting with the right audience.

Talented, with diversified skills, Hinklein is also producing a record and comic book project called Fight For the Encore, and editing for Social Marvels, a website specializing in social media tactics and strategies. He also creates apps geared towards children for Cupcake Digital, a company that creates games for kids featuring their favorite cartoon characters, Hinklein said.

Hinklein attributes a lot of his success to being a Scarlet Knight.

“Being a Knight taught me to always have a willingness to learn, stay tough, and get passionate.”

 

2010

Brandon Rodriguez

Rodriguez is working for the University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Jersey, UMDNJ. He assists doctors with research and administrative work. He also works in the finance department, developing different grants and budgets for children’s health care, specifically medical equipment to help children with Down Syndrome, Autism and other disorders.

Rodriguez recently started a small catering business, Creative Cuisine Catering, in North Brunswick. The business caters to parties, as well as social and business events on the weekends.

 

2011

Allison Norlian

Norlian recently joined WKTV News Channel 2 in Utica, New York, as a general assignment reporter and is thrilled to report for the Mohawk Valley and call it her new home! She’s from Cherry Hill. Before the Utica assignment she worked at KYW Newsradio in Philadelphia, freelanced for a small hyper-local newspaper, co-anchored its public access show and was a contributing writer for an entertainment website.

 

2012

Ciara Copell

Copell is studying for her MA in Politics and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She wants to pursue a career in education policy. “Ideally, I’d like to work on the state or national level to reform the current K-12 public education system, but obviously that’s a long way away,” she wrote. Copell lives in Hasbrouck Heights.

 

Megan Schuster

She is an account coordinator for the food team at Coyne Public Relations in Parsippany. As a member of the food team, she gets to work with Coyne’s food and beverage clients. But she also works with the social media team, specifically blogger outreach, for all kinds of clients.

Schuster has one general word of advice to pass on to J/MS students: start blogging as soon as possible.

Have a focus to the blog, whether it be food/recipes, arts, news, etc. It shows that you care about the industry are keeping up with trends. When she is not working, Schuster volunteers with the public relations and fundraising committee for the Raritan Valley chapter of Habitat for Humanity.

J/MS Professor Steve Miller, second from right, recently visited alums and interns who work at Z100’s “The Elvis Duran and the Morning Show.” From left are senior Melissa Menonca ’13, Samantha Coppolino ’12, and Carla Marie Monica ’10.