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Arts & Entertainment

It’s not every day that a playwright gets to see their words brought to life by talented performers onstage. It’s even more unusual when that playwright turns out to be an ordinary 7-year-old.

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Kids are alright hero
Ismael Lara Jr. grew up in southeast Texas, in the small town of Palacios, halfway between Galveston and Corpus Christi. He fell in love with theater and the arts in high school, but telling stories was not just a hobby.

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TYA Hero
Donna Washington ’90 is a storyteller based in Durham, North Carolina whose original stories and folk takes inspire community and connection. She chooses stories specifically for different aged young audiences, tackling topics like anti-racism, red-flag relationships and how to understand the construction of a story.

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Donna Hero v2
Kate Zambreno ’99 considers herself a late bloomer. She began her career as a journalist with Chicago alt-weeklies before delving into more experimental fiction, pushing the boundaries of traditional forms. “Much of my writing goes past fact into the realm of fiction,” says Zambreno. The author of eight books, she is now nationally recognized for writing that “troubles genre,” as she puts it.

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Kate Zambrano Hero
Nancy Johnson ’93 worked for more than a decade as an award-winning television reporter for CBS and ABC affiliates before moving into corporate communications and public relations. “Still,” she says, “I always wanted to tell the stories of my own imagination, particularly those about the Black experience in America.” Johnson has accomplished just that in her debut novel, The Kindest Lie, named one of the most anticipated books of 2021 by Newsweek; O, The Oprah Magazine; and Elle.

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Kindest Lie Hero
If you’re a fan of John Legend’s hit song “Conversations in the Dark,” you’re already a fan of Kellen “Pom Pom” Pomeranz too. A songwriter and producer based in New York City, Pomeranz has worked on some of today’s most popular songs, such as “Novocaine” by the Unlikely Candidates, which topped Billboard’s Alternative Songs chart for 33 weeks.

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Pom Pom Hero
Author Jennifer Mathieu ’98 trained at Northwestern as a journalist. After transitioning her career to teaching and learning from her students, she began writing Young Adult (YA) fiction and making a name for herself as an author with a keen sense of her audience and the stories they care about.

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Jennifer Mathieu
Launched by the Northwestern Alumni Association last fall, the Senior Mentorship Program engages the global alumni network to help seniors prepare for the next step amid a pandemic that has
diminished job prospects.

Learn about the program

Kalina Silverman Hero
Interest in computer science has skyrocketed over the past few years, fueled by a surge of available data, enhanced computing power and advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning. Launched by the McCormick School of Engineering and supported by visionary philanthropists, the Computer Science Transformation Initiative is revolutionizing learning across disciplines at Northwestern.

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computer science students hero
Live music performances might not be possible because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but for Kellogg School of Management adjunct lecturer Gregg Latterman and senior Olivia Hernandez, the show must go on. They’re finding innovative ways to adapt to a virtual entertainment industry.

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Olivia Hernandez Hero