INSIDE BINGHAMTON UNIVERSITY
‘20 in their 20s’ recipients have ties to University
Binghamton University lays claim to several of the recently recognized “20 in their 20s” recipients. The program acknowledges the contributions made by the region’s future leaders. This year’s recipients include employees, students and a recent graduate of the University:
Kathryn Fletcher, a doctoral student in biomedical engineering, earned her bachelor’s degree in bioengineering from Binghamton University in May 2008. As a member and officer in Catalysts for Intellectual Capital 2020 (CIC2020), a student-led think tank, she helps maintain a focus on retaining intellectual capital and promoting economic development in the region.
Fletcher continues to lead the CIC Leadership Institute, a credit-bearing course administered by CIC2020, which helps bridge the gap between the local community and the University. She also serves on the Student Advisory Board of the College of Community and Public Affairs.
Last September, she hosted the first annual Binghamton Blowout Block Party in Binghamton, to help familiarize students with the city. Fletcher also created the start-up BiziLife Inc., playing a pivotal role in conceptualizing and prototyping a wireless mobile technology.
In just two years, Director of Federal Relations Michael Frame has had a multi-million dollar impact on Binghamton University. In his role as the liaison between the University, Congress and federal agencies, Frame has been instrumental in shepherding $6 million in federal funding for research initiatives at the University.
Frame, who holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial and labor relations from Cornell University, earned his master of public administration from Syracuse University.
He came to Binghamton in 2006, and, as one of the youngest directors of university-based federal relations in the country, helps lead the University’s efforts on educational, research and technology transfer policy issues.
A doctoral student in English and creative writing, Romanian-born Andrei Guruianu worked as a reporter and features writer for the Press & Sun-Bulletin for five years before leaving journalism to pursue his master’s in education from Elmira College. He now teaches at Ithaca College and Binghamton University, while continuing to write and publish poetry, short stories and essays. His writing has been featured on the American Life in Poetry Project and nominated for Best New American Voices 2010.
With a grant from the Broome County Arts Council, Guruianu established The Broome Review, a literary journal, and will award the Stephen Dunn Poetry Award in honor of Pulitzer Prize-winner Dunn in 2009.
Elaine Liu earned a bachelor’s degree in art history and a master’s degree in social work (MSW) from Binghamton University and, as the service manager and operations coordinator of Off Campus College Transport (OCCT), oversees all aspects of the nonprofit, student-run bus service and more than 60 employees, seven monitors and five coordinators.
She also serves as an instructor for the College of Community and Public Affairs, teaching the course College Students in Transition.
Recipient of the Graduate Student Award for Excellence in Service/Outreach while working on her master’s, Liu interned at ACCORD and became a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), working within the Family Court system to advocate for youth who have been deemed abused or neglected.
A December 2008 graduate of Binghamton University, Ariana Zbrzezny is a native of Binghamton who grew up on the West Side. She holds dual bachelor’s degrees in music therapy and vocal performance from East Carolina University. With a recently completed master’s of music in opera degree from Binghamton, she plans to continue performing and bringing music to others.
She is a certified music therapist and has worked to reach people through music in Alzheimer’s units, pediatric playrooms, neonatal intensive care units, a children’s home and with the Preparation for Adult Learning Success (PALS) program at Broome-Tioga BOCES.
Zbrezny is director of Christian education and music coordinator for the West Presbyterian Church in Binghamton.