April 2021 Alumni and Faculty Notes

Catch up on news from the SYA alumni and faculty community

Do you have milestone news to share?

Submit yours for consideration in the next issue.








Former Faculty:

Keith Hilles-Pilant FR’95F ES’02F JP’11F IT’12-13F ES’16F has been appointed to the board of Friends of IHES, a non-profit organization that supports the prestigious Institut des Hautes Etudes Scientifiques (IHES), an international research institute in mathematics and theoretical physics located in Bures-sur-Yvette, just outside Paris. IHES is the French counterpart organization to the Institute of Advanced Studies in Princeton. Read more.


Jason Blum FR’86, producer, and Tigers Are Not Afraid Mexican director Issa López decided to pull a fast one on genre fans on April Fool’s Day by dropping a trailer for her new found-footage movie El Chupacabras. Read more.

Robin Hauser FR’82’s documentary film $avvy made its world premiere at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival this past weekend. The film investigates historical, cultural, and societal norms around women and money, and explores with humor and honesty, why women often take a back seat to manage their money. Watch this interview.

John Lesher ES’84, producer of award-winning Birdman, has teamed with actor Christian Bale on The Pale Blue Eye, a Gothic horror-thriller that was acquired by Netflix for a whopping $55M, beating many other competitors who were seeking to buy the film at the European Film Market. Read more.

Tia Napolitano FR'01 is the showrunner and executive producer of Freeform's "Cruel Summer" that debuts on April 20. The storyline chronicles the journey of twists and turns of the lives of two teenage girls. Read more and watch this interview.

Jason Wu FR’01 explains why it’s so important to stand up against anti-Asian racism, and the steps fashion designers need to take to create a truly inclusive fashion industry. Read more.


  • Alumni Notes
  • News
Celebrating 50 Years of Coeducation: the Women of SYA

The unprecedented move toward coeducation signaled a sweeping evolution at SYA. This moment opened doors to a lifetime of possibility and change for women, one that continues to evolve and show promise. The rest is HERstory.

It's Founder's Week and Celebration of 50 Years of Coeducation

Beginning this Founder's Day, September 9, 2020, we commemorate this historic moment with a year-long celebration of virtual programming and stories. Throughout the year we will invite the participation of alumnae/i, faculty, staff, students and parents as we honor the influence and contributions of women to SYA's past, present and future. 

2020 Alvarez Global Scholars

They say that when life hands you lemons, you make lemonade. Like many of their classmates, SYA’s very first Alvarez Global Scholars, Frances and Annika, will tell you that they also made traditional cider, cheese, lifelong friends, and memories that will help shape how they ultimately see the world.

My Italian Odyssey

SYA Italy class of 2020 student Jalal H. reflects on his time spent abroad in Viterbo and the memories he made with friends.