Building careers through the arts

For Immediate Release:  March 3, 2016

BLOOMSBURG — A Bloomsburg University alumnus who appears in the popular Netflix show, “Orange is the New Black,” and the executive director of a digital arts studio will illustrate career opportunities for students with a liberal arts background on Thursday, March 17, during “Breaking Ground: Building Careers through the Arts.” The event is the first symposium sponsored by BU’s Center for Visual and Performing Arts CVPA.

Graphic artist and photographer Mark Heaps, executive director for Houndstooth Studio, Austin, Texas, will present the symposium’s opening keynote address at 9:30 a.m. in Carver Hall, Kenneth S. Gross Auditorium. Houndstooth Studio specializes in creating engaging experiences through digital and analog interactivity. Heaps, formerly director of development for Duarte Inc., has more than 20 years of experience working with clients including Google, Apple and HP.

Actor James McMenamin, a 2001 BU graduate, will present the evening keynote address at 5 p.m. in Carver Hall, K.S. Gross Auditorium. McMenamin, who portrays corrections officer Charlie “Donuts” Coates in “Orange is the New Black,” also appeared on the seventh season of “Nurse Jackie” and in a film currently in post-production, “The Long Home,” with James Franco and Ashton Kutcher. His acting credits include TV”s “The Good Wife,” “Law and Order SVU,” “Person of Interest, “Unforgettable” and the HBO miniseries “Olive Kitteridge.”

Both keynote addresses and the reception to celebrate the opening of the “Breaking Ground” exhibit, beginning at 6 p.m. in the Gallery at Greenly Center, 50 E. Main St., are open to the public free of charge.

BU’s College of Liberal Arts formed the CVPA to provide a link between the university and the community. The symposium, which includes alumni panel discussions and presentations, aims to help students in art, art history, English/creative writing, mass communications, music, dance and theatre understand how their arts education can lead to a career and be a part of their life after graduation.

Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 10,000 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in the colleges of Education, Business, Liberal Arts and Science and Technology.