fbpx Graduation ‘24: Everything you need to know about this exciting day!  — PCA

Graduation ‘24: Everything you need to know about this exciting day! 

PCA Graduation ceremony, 2022

At PCA, Commencement is more than just a ceremony. It’s a celebration a pivotal moment—honoring the hard work and dedication of our fresh graduates as they stride forward towards their promising futures. On Friday, May 10th, family, friends and faculty will join us in commemorating this significant milestone and celebrating their achievements! 

“On behalf of the entire faculty and staff at Paris College of Art, I extend my heartfelt congratulations to the graduating Class of 2024. Your relentless pursuit of creative expression and dedication to honing your artistic talents have been a privilege to witness. We celebrate your achievements and know you’ll not only leave your mark on the field of art and design, but also inspire those who follow.” – Dr Michael Meere, PCA’s Provost

Commencement Student Speakers

We are proud to reveal the names of the student speakers for this year’s commencement ceremonies, who were nominated by their fellow graduating peers.

Undergraduate class of 2024 ceremony

Ofir Avita
  • Ofir Avita (BFA Photography)
    Ofir is an artist and photographer whose creative journey is deeply rooted in the exploration of masculinity, identity, and self-acceptance. Hailing from Israel, his upbringing in a culture shaped by heteronormative and patriarchal ideals, compounded by his service in the Israeli army, provided the backdrop for his profound introspection.In his visual project, Ofir employs digital photography as a means of personal expression and societal reflection. Each photograph serves as a window into the intricate landscape of masculinity, capturing diverse expressions and narratives that challenge conventional norms. Through intimate dialogues with the men he photographs, Ofir delves into their experiences, struggles, and triumphs in defining their own masculinity, mirroring his own journey of self-discovery.His work transcends mere documentation, delving deep into the complexities of masculinity and celebrating its fluidity and diversity. Through sharing his own story and those of others, Ofir aims to inspire others to embrace authenticity and redefine masculinity in a world where all expressions of manhood are celebrated and valued. He seeks to create spaces where individuals can explore their own identities and challenge societal norms, contributing to a more inclusive and empathetic society.
  • Kirsten Ceralde (BFA, Film Art)
    “Kirsten is an open-hearted student who sets a welcoming tone for all students in the cohort. She’s never afraid to step out of her comfort zone and is always the first to try something no one has dared to do yet, setting an example for the rest that follows. I believe the past three years of the intense journey wouldn’t have felt so fun without her for most students in cohort 3.

Graduate class of 2024 ceremony

Samiera Abu-Nasr, photographed by Bishoppe Kamusinga
  • Samiera Abou-Nasr (MFA, Transdisciplinary New Media)
    “Samiera consistently seeks input from professors and faculty members on how to improve our program and tailor our classes to meet individual student needs. She doesn’t hesitate to locate or reserve equipment that benefits all students in class when needed. Furthermore, she actively reaches out to students from various departments for collaborative projects, engages in PCA community activities, and has held CAP positions for multiple semesters. On top of all this, she excels in public speaking and possesses exceptional verbal skills!”
Sofía Fernández-García
  • Sofia Fernandez-Garcia (MFA, Photography and Image-making)
    Sofía is an artist, educator, and researcher. Her artistic practice specializes in analog photography, alternative processes such as lumen prints and photo transfers, and installations.Drawing from her experience from growing up in a bicultural home in the US, her projects regularly explore the relationship between food, authenticity, culture, stereotypes, and identity. During her studies at the Paris College of Art, Sofía developed projects focused on femicides in Mexico, mass shootings in the U.S., and studies on the effects of displacement, mental health, and immigration. This year, Sofía was selected to represent Paris College of Art through the PCA/Terra Foundation of American Art Research Program where she has been conducting research under the supervision of Barbara Montefalcone, Chair of the Liberal Studies Department and presented her findings to an audience of art history students from Université Paris Nanterre at the Terra Foundation Center in Paris. Sofía has led several photographic workshops in alternative processes for Paris College of Art, Istituto Italiano di Fotografia, and the Lycée Edgar-Poe.

Excellence at PCA: Honoring Students and Faculty

In March 2024, PCA launched two distinguished awards: the PCA Student Service Award and the Provost Award for Excellence in Teaching.

The PCA Student Service Award celebrates students who have demonstrated outstanding dedication to enhancing the college experience for their peers and the wider community. Faculty, students and staff were invited to nominate deserving students.

The Provost Award for Excellence in Teaching honors faculty members who exhibit exemplary teaching practices and unwavering commitment to student success. Only students were eligible to nominate faculty for this prize.

These awards serve as a testament to PCA’s commitment to fostering a culture of service, leadership, and academic excellence within our vibrant community. 

Join us on May 10th in celebrating and recognizing those who embody the spirit of service and excellence at PCA during the commencement ceremonies!

PCA Student Service Award recipients

Daniela Cantu
  • Daniela Cantu (BFA in Film Art, ’25)
    “Daniela is a dedicated, core member of Student Council who is constantly thinking about how to make PCA a better place. Daniela “embodies the values of integrity, empathy, and inclusivity,” and has “worked tirelessly to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all students.”
Credit: Kelly Hsieh photographed by Artem @tyomasya
  • Kelly Hsieh (BFA in Fashion Design, ’24)
    “Kelly offers support and guidance to her peers, with a strong commitment to mentorship and to contributing to a positive learning environment. A devoted member of PCA Cooks, Kelly “is always going out of her way to enhance [the students’] PCA experience!”
Credit: Tiffani Thompson photographed by Zoe Yalden
  • Tiffani Thompson (MFA in Photography and Image-making, ’25)
    “Tiffani possesses a strong desire for continuous learning, while her willingness to support her peers exemplifies her outstanding character. Tiffani’s “drive and commitment make her a shining example of excellence within the student body.”

Provost Award for Excellence in Teaching

Maximiliano Battaglia
  • Maximiliano Silvera Battaglia
    Maximiliano teaches in the Photography (BFA), Fashion Film & Photography (MA), and the Photography and Image-making (MA/MFA) Departments. Students have praised him not only for his knowledge in the field and passion for photography, but also for his structured and well-prepared classes that mix “the perfect amount” of theory and practice. He “listens to the wishes and needs of his students and gives excellent feedback to help push [them] toward their goals.
Juliette Robbins
  • Juliette Robbins
    Juliette teaches a variety of design-based classes in the Liberal Studies & Art History (BFA), Communication Design (BFA), and Interior Design (BFA) Departments. A “pillar of the PCA community,” Juliette “fosters an environment of active learning and growth,” and “consistently pushes her students to achieve their best.” As one of her nominators succinctly put it, Juliette is “the gold standard of what it means to go above and beyond as a teacher.”
Lisa Salamandra
  • Lisa Salamandra
    Lisa teaches in the Fine Arts (BFA), Photography (BFA), and Liberal Studies and Art History (BFA) Departments. Furthermore, as the Graduate Thesis Coordinator, Lisa also teaches across the various MA and MFA programs at PCA. Lisa is “patient and takes the time to help students,” and she “really cares about [the students’] learning and improvements.” Whether she is teaching drawing or portfolio development, or a graduate thesis methods course, Lisa puts an incredible “amount of effort, care, and dedication” in her classes to help students grow and succeed.