North Central College - Naperville, IL

North Central’s SEA Conference teaches entrepreneurs the business of arts

Tom Sharpe
North Central College’s 13th annual Self Employment in the Arts Conference Feb. 22-23 helps aspiring artists become successful entrepreneurs.

North Central College’s 13th annual Self Employment in the Arts (SEA) Conference Feb. 22-23 will help aspiring artists learn to become successful entrepreneurs.

The SEA Conference provides educational resources to help aspiring artists gain entrepreneurial knowledge and skills needed to establish and maintain careers as independent artists. The conference features performances, workshops, panel discussions and other activities tailored to actors, filmmakers, musicians, painters, sculptors, writers and other artists.

Ruth Kesselring Royal '61

Ruth Kesselring Royal published a compilation of letters she and fellow alumna Beryl A. Brinkman ’62, who passed away in 2007, exchanged while involved in the Peace Corps. Royal’s book, titled “Never Gonna Cease My Wanderin’: Letters Between Friends,” (Peace Corps Writers, 2012) gives insight into the Peace Corps when it first began, the Philippines in the 1960s and the developing friendship between the two women. The two met while attending North Central. They began exchanging letters while Royal was in the Philippines, continuing this tradition throughout the 1960s.

Mae Seely Sylvester '62

Mae Seely Sylvester is education coordinator for the University of Minnesota’s Division of Adolescent Health and Medicine Department of Pediatrics. Earlier in her career she served as a secondary teacher, drama coach and counselor for seven years.

Emily Jane Kiekhofer Lockrem '72

Emily Jane Kiekhofer Lockrem has served as a librarian at the Milpitas Christian School in San Jose, CA, for the past 12 years. Previously, she held a position as an assistant rare books librarian at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. She received her master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in comparative literature and library sciences in 1976. She and her husband Peter reside in San Jose.

Chris Vavra '10

Chris Vavra published “Sideswipe,” the third book in his Oak Villa series. The book is set in a fictional Chicago suburb and centered on the Mafia. The series is published under the pen name C.R. Jakes and is available at Amazon.com in the Kindle edition. He has published three novels and three novellas in the Oak Villa series and a fourth novel is in process. He also works full time as a content specialist editor for a manufacturing magazine and freelances in Oswego, IL.

Jon Davis '92

Jon Davis released his latest and third book, “Beneath the Northern Lights” (AuthorHouse, 2012). His previously published works include “Life, Inc.” (AuthorHouse, 2006) and “Stephen King’s America” (Bowling Green Popular Press, 1994), which was the result of research he performed with a North Central College Richter Independent Study Fellowship. Davis is also a songwriter, musician and award-winning business and marketing freelance writer.

Michelle LeDonne '09

Michelle LeDonne is the communications officer for the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation in Montreal where she works in media and donor relations and is involved in fundraising and grant writing. LeDonne graduated from McGill University in February 2011 with a master of arts degree in English.

Josh Bailey '11

Josh Bailey is now North Central College’s periodicals and electronic resources assistant. He spent three years serving as a library services student assistant and is an assistant Mock Trial coach at North Central. In his free time he is involved in World Relief DuPage, which helps refugees and immigrants living in DuPage and Kane counties, and the DuPage PADS, assisting those who are homeless in DuPage county. Bailey recently married his high school sweetheart Ali Ledbetter ’12 and resides in Oak Park, IL.

Erin Martin '12

Erin Martin is teaching freshman English and coaching junior varsity boys soccer at Wheaton North High School in Wheaton, IL. She teaches students with low reading comprehension skills, intermediate abilities and advanced skills. 

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