Interns & Volunteers

Our interns and volunteers are instrumental to what we do, and provide needed support to Spark’s daily mission. We appreciate them all! For more info on becoming a Spark Intern or Volunteer, click here.

Spring 2016 Interns

IMG_9380Mallika Rao

Mallika Rao is a senior at Marist, majoring in Communications with a concentration in Journalism. On campus, she hosts a weekly radio show on pop culture news, writes for the campus newspaper and works at the Marist Institute of Public Opinion. She is passionate about all things media, and wants to one day change things up in the world of media. One of her biggest dreams is to kickstart a production and publishing company that creates original content geared towards individuals with mental illness and disabilities. Besides dreaming of changing the world one day, Mallika enjoys the simpler things in life, such as playing piano, cooking, watching movies and spending time with her friends.

Lindsay GranatIntern Photo-4

Lindsay Granat is a junior at SUNY New Paltz, studying Sociology with a concentration in Human Services and a minor in Spanish.  On campus, she has co-hosted a weekly radio show, worked as a writing tutor for ESL students, and been a social media ambassador and she hopes to continue to take on media-related endeavors throughout her college career.  Lindsay looks forward to her internship at Spark Media Project as a unique opportunity to gain hands-on knowledge in various areas of media production.  She is also very experienced and loves working with youth, and is excited to become acquainted with a diverse and dynamic group of young media makers.  Besides her love for all things media, Lindsay is passionate about international travel, practicing her Spanish skills, and spending time with her friends and family.

Intern Photo-3Emma Dooley

Emma Dooley is a current Human Services major at Dutchess Community College. After a tumultuous career as an au pair/nanny in Paris and London, she has decided to return stateside and give herself back to the college life. Although her academic interests include Psychology and social services, her passion is film, and Spark seems to bridge that gap perfectly. Her favorite films include Almost Famous and Y Tu Mama También. She also likes guitar music, eating delicious food, and dancing in silent rooms.

Megan GleasonIntern Photo-2

Megan is a junior at Marist College from Long Island and she is majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. She is very involved on campus by being a part of Kappa Kappa Gamma, Autism SpeaksU, and Relay for Life. Megan has a strong dedication and passion for marketing and hopes to one day be able to use marketing to expand her knowledge of the world. Megan hopes her time with Spark will be an extension of her college education and give her experience that she only ever dreamed of having.

MattFurlanoMatthew Furlano

Matthew Furlano is a graduate of Dutchess Community College. He is currently interning with Spark Media Project to gain hands-on experience in production, and explore his passion for using media in an educational setting. Some of his favorite directors are Werner Herzog, Quentin Tarantino, and Stanley Kubrick, and his favorite TV shows currently are The Wire, and Game of Thrones.

VictoriaMajaraliVictoria Majarali

Victoria is a sophomore at Vassar who began interning at Spark in the fall of 2014.  Since beginning her internship last year, Victoria has proven herself to be a vital support for Spark’s teaching teams, working primarily with elementary-aged youth. She is dedicated, hardworking and passionate, and looks forward to gaining more experience in media production, while impacting the lives of youth.

LindseyNunLindsey Nun

Lindsey Nun is currently attending Dutchess Community College, where she studies Communications and Media Arts. She stepped into an intern role here at Spark after spending the summer of 2015 as a youth producer for DropTV 2015, where she had a fantastic experience. While working for DropTV, Lindsey wrote the script for the short film “Reflections” and discovered her love of writing.

Mike PhillipsMike Phillips

Michael Phillips is a media production major at SUNY New Paltz studying video production and editing. This is his second year at SUNY New Paltz after earning an associate’s degree from Dutchess Community College. Michael is excited for the opportunity to combine his love of media and his love of teaching children as an intern at Spark. Michael is currently on the volunteer Story Board for the Wayfinder Experience, a theater and arts summer camp in the Hudson valley and beyond, where he has been involved since the summer of 2009.

Screen Shot 2015-09-18 at 3.48.03 PMAbby Prowant

Abby Prowant is a Marist College senior who is passionate about the media and how the world is changing because of it. She is currently the public relations director for Marist’s television station, MCTV, and has participated in many of the organization’s news and entertainment shoots. She has also mentored younger girls as a senior Girl Scout, helping them to succeed and realize their full potential outside of the classroom and home.

Jordan Ross

Jordan Ross is a current senior at Vassar College majoring in Sociology and Chinese. She is interested in how brands grow and share their message with the world, and has a growing love for media — especially filmmaking (a la Cecile Emeke). She hopes her time at Spark Media will be an experience in growing awareness about media literacy, and she can’t wait to contribute to the team!

Nicole-SNicole Schonitzer

Nicole Schonitzer has been interning at Spark for the past three years, becoming a valuable part of the Spark team. She is a senior English major at Vassar, and spent last spring studying abroad in London at Queen Mary, University of London. Nicole is passionate about visual arts and media, and continues to grow her professional skills at Spark, assisting with the youth programs, helping with the Reel Expressions Youth Film Festival, and working on outreach for the organization.

Screen Shot 2015-09-18 at 3.48.16 PMAviva Thal

Aviva is a sophomore at Vassar College, and this is her second year as an intern at Spark. Since joining Spark in the fall of 2014, Aviva has worked with youth in 1st – 12th grades, becoming an integral part of the teaching team. In addition to her internship at Spark, Aviva has worked with the Teton Literacy Center, the Spirit of the Mountain Summer Camp, and the Bet Sefer in Jackson Hole, WY, United Planet in Jinxi, Hunan, China, and the Rural Education Institute in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico. She is excited to get more teaching experience and to learn about the creative process and technical aspects of media.


Maria Waslick

Maria is a junior at Vassar who first came to Spark in the spring of 2015 because of an interest in film and media production. Maria enjoys working with young people, and would like to get to know the Poughkeepsie Community better. Prior to interning at Spark, she explored her passion for film and media, editing various school projects, pieces for VCTV (Vassar College Television), and hopes to further explore this passion through her work at Spark.

IMG_7758Sixing Xu

Sixing Xu is a sophomore at Vassar College who is about to declare her major in Media Studies. Passionate about both arts and computer science, she grows an incessant curiosity in media production and hopes genuinely to become part of a team who can make media impactful. She hopes her time at Spark will give her hands-on experience in the media industry, and is excited to bring fresh energy to the team.


Vincent Graviano

Vincent Graviano–affectionately known by Spark coworkers and participants as Vince–has been volunteering for Spark Media Project for about a year and “loves it!” He earned an Associate’s degree in advertising and communications from Dutchess Community College, and went on to complete a Bachelor’s degree in advertising and graphics from Manhattan’s School of Visual Arts. Vince has a passion for fine arts and loves drawing, painting, carving wood, and working with other forms of media. “I love working here and working with such a great group of staffers and volunteers.” Vince also enjoys the ancillary benefits of interning at Spark – advancing his skills in media production and editing. “I look forward to everyday and the opportunity to create and explore new ideas and art!”

Philip Rivera

PhilFilm-editor extraordinaire, Philip Rivera, has been volunteering with the Spark Media Project for five years, and, prior to that, was a participant in Spark programing. A Beacon resident and graduate of Beacon High School, Phil studied film production from Dutchess County BOCES. Phil says he loves working with Spark and the camaraderie he shares with the staff and other interns, volunteers, and educators. “I especially like helping others work with cameras and sound,” he reports. In his free time, Phil hones his Photoshop and graphic design skills and watches movies (he’s a big-time movie fan!); he also writes reviews on his favorite genres—horror, superhero, and sci-fi. Work Samples