The Wagner College Presidential Fellowship is a yearlong, residential, cohort-based program for recent Wagner College graduates. President Joel W. Martin announced the fellowship in spring 2020, with the inaugural cohort of 12 Presidential Fellows expected in the 2020-2021 academic year.
The program aims to be a runway to future career opportunities and advanced study. Presidential Fellows are young alumni who demonstrate uncommon strength in leading and mentoring others, academic excellence, self-awareness, and a desire to grow.
Over the course of an academic year, Fellows engage in projects across academic and administrative departments that align with their academic and professional interests and advance the mission of the college. They take part in a weekly seminar where they examine the theory that underlies the practice of their projects. Fellows also have networking opportunities with college leaders, other alumni, trustees, and business and community leaders.
Abigail Dorcin grew up in Cap-Haïtien, Haiti. She then moved to Linden, New Jersey, where she finished her high school education. She earned her bachelor's degree in business administration with a concentration in management from Wagner in 2019. As a student, Abigail worked alongside Adama Fassah, the executive director of a program called Napela. This program provides literacy and citizenship classes to African refugee women in the neighborhood of Park Hill, Staten Island. Abigail was also a member of the Black Student Union, and a participant in LEAD, Wagner's yearlong underclassman mentoring program.
Annabeth Hinman from Rochester, New York graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in Government & Politics and Philosophy and a minor in Gender Studies. During her time as a student, she was a member of the nationally recognized all-female a capella group Vocal Synergy and a member of service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega. She was inaugurated into multiple academic honor societies and was awarded the Phyllis Andors Award, Socrates Prize, and Political Science Award. She is so honored to be given a place in the inaugural cohort of Presidential Fellows at Wagner College.
Conchetta Aronowitz is from Kenilworth, N.J. She is a proud member of Wagner’s graduating Class of 2020. Her undergraduate years concluded with a degree in Theatre & Speech with a concentration in Design, Technology, and Management and a minor in Religious Studies. She is thrilled to be a Presidential Fellow for the 2020-2021 academic year. She loves spending time outdoors whenever possible, whether it involves hiking, biking, or just finding beautiful views. While Wagner may be operating differently this year, she hopes to be a part of making the campus community a wonderful one.
Donovan Davis grew up in Los Angeles, California. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Sociology with a concentration in Criminal Law from Wagner in 2020. As a student, Donovan was co-coordinator of the LEAD program for first-year students and a member of the football team. He also served as volunteer tutor for Make the Road-New York, where he helped underprivileged youth with their homework. He was the recipient of the Academic Excellence Award in Sociology, and he graduated magna cum laude.
Emily Lagace grew up in Augusta, Maine, where she loved being surrounded by the outdoors. She graduated from Wagner with a double bachelor’s degree in Theatre and English. During her time at Wagner, Emily studied abroad in London with the IES Theatre Studies program, was active in student theater on campus, and made the Dean's List. She wrote and directed a play, "Sick," which premiered in fall 2019 and doubled as her senior thesis project. Emily loves reading, traveling, hiking, and writing.
Emmy Steele grew up in a suburb outside Philadelphia. She graduated with a bachelor's degree in Arts Administration with a focus in Theatre and had three internships in her field while studying at Wagner. Emmy served as the president of the Theatre Advisory Board for the 2019-2020 school year, as well as the class representative for Completely Student Productions from her sophomore through her senior years. Along with serving on the board, Emmy also stage managed numerous productions throughout her time with CSP. While her main passion is working in as well as watching theater, Emmy also loves sports and spending time with her friends and family.
As a Long Island native, Joseph is no stranger to New York City. He earned his bachelor's degree in business administration with a concentration in finance from Wagner in 2020. As a student, Joseph served on the E-board of OUTWagner as a student ambassador, where he helped schedule events and make Wagner feel more like home for its LGBTQIA+ students. He also was named to the Dean's List every semester.
Liz Arvanitis grew up in Forked River, New Jersey. She earned her bachelor's degree in Public Administration, with a concentration in Urban Policy, and a minor in City Studies. At Wagner, Liz was actively involved with the Residential Education office, where she worked as a head resident assistant and was named RA of the Year. Liz served as an Alpha Phi Omega executive member and a proud OUTWagner student adviser. Passionate about environmentalism, Liz studied abroad in Germany, where she enrolled in a comprehensive sustainability program.
Nicolas Velez grew up on Staten Island. He earned his bachelor's degree in International Affairs with a concentration in Politics from Wagner in 2020. As a student, Nicolas was on the Dean's List every semester and won the International Affairs award in two consecutive years. As an athlete, he ran for Wagner's cross country and track & field team, and greatly contributed to Wagner's winning a championship title in both cross country and indoor track for the first time in the college's history. He is also extremely interested in foreign cultures and can speak Spanish as well as Japanese. Nicolas enjoys practicing the violin.
Ruth Kupperberg, from Wantagh, New York, graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in Theatre Performance and was Wagner College’s first Holocaust and Human Rights Studies minor. During her time as a student, she was the Hillel president, a member of the Honors Program and a performer in many Main Stage productions. Additionally, she was a lead admissions ambassador, orientation leader, and Holocaust Center intern. She was awarded the 2019 Next Generation Award by Wagner College’s Chai Society.
Terrell Braithwaite grew up on Staten Island. He earned his bachelors degree in sociology with a concentration in criminal justice from Wagner in 2020. As a student, Terrell was the civic engagement representative for the Black Student Union and a residential assistant during the 2019-2020 academic year. He served as a Bonner Scholar and was a member of the Men of Color Initiative. As a reliable asset in athletics, Terrell was a practice player for the women’s basketball team throughout his time at Wagner, as well as a team manager for the men’s basketball team during the 2019-20 season.
Holly Alexander was raised in Kingston, Jamaica. She moved to Florida for college, where she took the opportunity to study abroad in the Czech Republic before transferring to Wagner. Holly earned her bachelor’s degree in English and Government & Politics, graduating magna cum laude. While a student, Holly served as the president of Alpha Omicron Pi, vice president of the Pre-Law Society, a community leader, and Carey Institute for Government Reform administrative assistant. She is passionate about social justice and international diplomacy. Holly is excited to be back on campus as a part of the inaugural cohort of Presidential Fellows.
Presidential Fellows must be nominated by a member of Wagner’s faculty or professional staff. Candidates complete an application. Finalists are invited to group interviews with a committee of senior faculty and staff selectors. Those selectors make a final recommendation to the president of the College, who selects the cohort of Fellows.
Selection is based upon five criteria: mentorship capacity; demonstrated leadership; academic effort; maturity & self-awareness; and desire to grow. Excellent candidates will have distinguished themselves in each of these areas during their undergraduate careers. They will also demonstrate a desire and capability to contribute to the life of the College and to the development of their cohort. To be eligible, a candidate must have graduated from Wagner with a bachelor’s degree within the past three years and must not be an enrolled graduate student at Wagner.