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Meet the Ambassadors

2018-2019 Ambassadors  |  2017-2018 Ambassadors   |   2016-2017 Ambassadors

2018-2019 Ambassadors

Mickenzie Kamm '19 (Lead)

Major: English

Minor: Religious Studies

Concentration: Peace & Conflict Studies

"Arts Transcending Borders has taught me lessons that are applicable to professional life and has led me to discover what I would like to pursue in the furture. I had no idea that Arts Administration was my dream job until I started as an Ambassador. Working with the ATB family has opened my eyes to the future and has allowed me to grow into a professional. I have learned how to act around an artist, how to be a good hostess, and how to accommodate an artist's needs. This summer, I was an intern at Jacob's Pillow [Dance Festival] where I learned even more about the field of Arts Administration and saw just how much Arts Transcending Borders has prepared me for the future. As my time on the Hill and as an Ambassador comes to a close, I can see how much ATB has grown at Holy Cross and value the many ways that it has positively impacted my life. I will always cherish my time as an Arts Transcending Borders Ambassador."


Ajah Eills '21

Major: Biology

Minor: Deaf Studies

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   ATB helps provide a thriving art community on campus. Art is central to culture, and without ATB, Holy Cross would not be the creative and welcoming community it is today! Arts Transcending Borders also provides space for reflection and growth for students throughout their events. On this very busy campus, that is a luxury!

What excites you most about being an ATB Ambassador this year?   I am very excited to meet the various artists ATB is working with this year. I love discussing art and learning new things, and this position gives me an opportunity to do both!

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   A few years ago, I got the opportunity to have Thanksgiving at a music studio owned by Vinx Parrette, a close family friend. It was bitterly cold that year, and a storm had caused the heat to go out in all local houses. Vinx immediately offered up his studio as a replacement setting, and so we all piled into the car with whatever we could scrounge up, and headed over. It was one of the best Thanksgivings I've ever had. Although we didn't know everyone there, we were all brought together by love, laughter, and music. Music facilitates bonding in a way that nothing else can, and I am so glad that I got to be a part of it. The arts (and Vinx) brought us together in a way that could never be replicated.


Laura Garcia '19

Major: International Studies

Concentration: Peace & Conflict Studies

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   ATB has the ability to tie in global perspectives using art as its platform. As a society that can become divisive at times, a platform such as this one is essential in providing opportunities for conversation and reflection upon the message art coveys.

What excites you about being an ATB Ambassador this year?   I am personally very excited to learn how administration works in the arts and to see the way these upcoming performances are understood and appreciated in our Holy Cross community.

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   As a musician, I have seen a lot of amazing work being done through free arts education. During my time in Peru, I was able to volunteer at a non-profit organization called Sinfonia por el Peru that offered free instruments and lessons to underserved students, and this helped foster a sense of community for them. Art can create impact in all its forms and this was one of the main reasons I decided to become an Ambassador.


Meaghan Lanctot '21

Majors: English / Flim Studies

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   ATB is important for Holy Cross as it gives students access to not only incredible performances, but the ability to talk to real artists in person. Being able to talk to someone who works in the arts industry is vital for understanding how the arts can fit into your life once you leave campus. These kinds of introspective conversations are what make ATB so unique and valuable to Holy Cross.

What excites you most about being an ATB Ambassador this year?   I'm excited about being able to work with my fellow Ambassadors in cultivating a creative and fun environment for ATB!

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   When I saw Beyoncés September Vogue cover was photographed by a 23-year-old photographer named Tyler Mitchell. Seeing someone so close to my own age accomplishing this huge achievement really inspires me to keep pursuing what I want to do in the arts.



2017-2018 Ambassadors

Mickenzie Kamm '19 (Lead)

Major: English

Minor: Religious Studies

Concentration: Peace & Conflict Studies

What is your favorite place on campus?   Rehm Library

People might be surprised to know...   I am terrified of cats!

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   While bringing art to life on campus and making the arts become a large part of the HC community, ATB also brings artists to campus that provide unique avenues for the discussion and meditation of larger global issues, whether they be political, environmental, or social.

What excites you about being an ATB Ambassador?   As the only returning Ambassador, I am most excited to work with a new team and to build friendships with the new Ambassadors just as I did with last year's group!

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   Last year I witnessed how powerful art can be during the ATB event "Home Within." I saw and felt the impact of the performance within the audience and myself. No words were spoken but yet such an important topic was being discussed through both visual art and music. I saw how art is a way to spark important conversation regarding major global issues.


Ryan DeGraw '19

Major: Economics

Minor: Environmental Studies

What is your favorite place on campus?   CB2, in Stein

People might be surprised to know...   I am a big Bruce Springsteen fan!

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   The arts are applicable to every major, minor, and concentration. They possess a very unique ability to bring people from completely different backgrounds together to share an understanding of something magnificent. It is extremely important that programs such as ATB exist so that these opportunities happen with increased frequency.

What excites you about being an ATB Ambassador?   I am beyond excited to have the Silk Road Ensemble on campus for 3 years! I have had the privilege of seeing the Ensemble play at my former high school and of listening to many talks given by Yo-Yo Ma. I am constantly listening to their music while I study.

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   I have always appreciated the arts, but it was not until nearly four years ago, while seeing a play in San Francisco, that I realized the power of art to depict issues that relate to social justice. The play was part of a festival that centered on the theme of immigration. It was not particularly famous, but it showed a very real portrayal of the problems that immigrants experience in San Francisco. It was while watching this play that I realized the arts have a unique ability to call attention to problems in society.


Katie Lovell '20

Major: English / Art History

What is your favorite place on campus?   Campion House, especially in the wintertime

People might be surprised to know...   I am allergic to chocolate!

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   ATB is important for Holy Cross students to experience because the programming exposes them to a different way to understand a concept. Through art, students may realize connections that they would not have through traditional forms, like a lecture, because the subject is being presented in such a different way from how they've seen it before. ATB provides this access to the arts to all students on campus.

What excites you about being an ATB Ambassador?   Although I am an Art History major, I hadn't had a lot of exposure to performance art before coming to Holy Cross. However, my experience with ATB changed that. I found the programs that ATB did last year to be incredibly interesting and engaging. I look forward to working to advertise and construct these programs so that other students will attend and leave with a new sense of understanding or interest, just like I felt.

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   It amazes me how much the arts have been spread through social media in the past few years. One of the best examples of this is the Humans of New York Facebook page, a photojournalism series of portraits that tells the stories of everyday people. I think that this is one of the most powerful ways that the arts act as an important tool. It spreads awareness and empathy through its forms to convey messages and share people's viewpoints.


Edith Mensah Otabil '19

Major: Biology

Concentration: Premed

What is your favorite place on campus?   Hogan 4th floor

People might be surprised to know...   I moved from Ghana to America in 2012 when I was 15!

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   There is no doubt that Holy Cross has a rigorous academic curriculum. Many times, students cannot afford to have a proper social life due to their workload. ATB provides students with a stress-free atmosphere and a break from the challenging academic nature to enjoy arts in many forms from world-renowned artists.

What excites you about being an ATB Ambassador?   I'm really exicted to be an ATB Ambassador because I get to share my passion for arts with the Holy Cross community. I also look forward to meeting and assisting the artists and performers behind the scenes.

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   Last semester, one of the events ATB presented was The Nile Project. About 14 musicians from different East African countries along the Nile river came together to create music. Even though they did not speak the same language, they performed in harmony, using music as their communication. It showed how the power of art can unite people and bring a sense of togetherness.


Graham Offermann '19

Major: English

Minor: Anthropology

What is your favorite place on campus?   Rehm Library

People might be surprised to know...   I grew up outside of the United States!

Why do you think ATB is important for Holy Cross?   Exposure to the arts is essential for any person, especially a college student, to develop a strong ability to handle, and understand, social and political differences. Arts Transcending Borders presents that opportunity to the Holy Cross community.

What excites you about being an ATB Ambassador?   In addition to being part of an amazing team, I am excited to help bring some of the best artists to campus, and to introduce a new way of thinking to the many students who have little experience in the arts.

Describe a moment you saw the impact of the arts...   I first realized how impactful art can be when I was in elementary school. In my youth, my family moved from country to country quite frequently, and being able to adapt quickly to new cultures was a necessity. Similar to how math is a universal language, I found that they only consistent factor in each environment was my peers' interest in the arts — drawing and music. It brings people together and stimulates healthy conversation. Music is particularly interesting because it is so easy to understand and appreciate.



2016-2017 Ambassadors

Mickenzie Kamm '19 (Lead)

"ATB has been a great way for me to get more in touch with my passion for the arts and to be more involved in the campus community. ATB has allowed me to work on my leadership skills while working with a great ATB team who have quickly become some of my good friends! I value the experiences I have acquired through ATB and the bond I have made with my fellow ATB Ambassadors. I am proud of the work I have done as an ATB Ambassador and am passionate about the vast opportunities ATB presents me and the rest of the Holy Cross community."


Margaret Goddard '19

"As an ATB Ambassador, I have had the chance to witness the artist's process first-hand and act as the link between the artist and the audience. Each project had me thinking creatively about unique ways to promote and excite the community. Not only have I learned how to problem solve, work in a team, and create design content, I have been lucky enough to learn from artists and performers backstage and think deeply about what it really means to transcend borders."


Maria Claudia Schubert-Fontes '19

"ATB brings artists of diverse backgrounds and mediums to our Holy Cross campus community and allows students the opportunity to experience the talents of some of the industry's most well-regarded figures. The performances touch on a variety of themes that intersect with all majors and concentrations in some way. As an Anthropology major, I have found that much of what I learn in the classroom is complimented by my work in ATB. The experience has not only exposed me to a wide array of artistic mediums but has also introduced me to new perspectives and approaches towards the controversial. Being able to engage my campus community through ATB has been a great pleasure because it has given me the opportunity to extend past my common areas of interest and explore new facets of an issue. As an Ambassador, I have been able to see firsthand the ways art can more fully express the humanistic side of an issue. I find that the more I learn within my classes, the more I search for an artistic interpretation to further its meaning."


Lauren Wilson '19

"I love working with ATB because it is an organization that was created to integrate and emphasize the role of the arts across all aspects of the Holy Cross experience. As an Ambassador, I get to help facilitate the campus's relationship with the arts, which is something that I am personally very passionate about. My experiences with ATB have presented me with opportunities to learn directly from world-renowned artists that I never would have imagined being a part of. This involvement with artists, and planning events centered on them, prompts me to think outside of the box and learn new skills, but most importantly it has shown me the real-world application of my coursework and that doing something you love can be so much fun."