The Pennsylvania State University

School of Visual Arts

Introducing Penn State SoVA’s Student Council

SoVA Student Council

Penn State School of Visual Arts (SoVA) is pleased to introduce our newly formed Student Council. The purpose of the Student Council is to provide an organization and voice to students within SoVA. The council aims to bring together the students of the visual arts community through increased communication between disciplines and between students and faculty. This council will provide opportunities to develop and facilitate programming such as visiting artists, gallery spaces, conferences, and community engagement. Through this conduit, students will be given the opportunity to establish advocacy within the visual arts curriculum and facilities.

Council members include Helen Maser, President; Sophie Najjar, Vice President; Danielle Spewak, Secretary; Elise Warfield, Treasurer; and Colin Miller, Web Coordinator.

The council invites you to attend a Student Pecha Kucha, February 17, 6:00 PM (directly following the Hump Day Gallery Opening) in the Visual Arts Sculpture area (107 Visual Arts).

Below are bios of each member:

Helen Maser is a third-year undergraduate B.F.A. student in drawing and painting with a minor in art history. She is President of SoVA Student Council, Vice President of Drawing and Painting Club, and is a co-founder of the Hump Day Gallery. This summer she studied art conservation in Florence, Italy, and discovered a passion for this potential career. Her goal is to study art conservation after graduation, which would combine her interests in science, art, and history. In her spare time, Helen works with Chris Waggoner Photography as an assistant to the photographer and a professional makeup artist.

Sophie Najjar is a third-year B.F.A. student in the drawing and painting program, double-majoring in geography (B.A.). She is the Vice President of the new SoVA Student Council, as well as the Secretary of Painting Club.  She is also involved with the campus organization State of State, and is in the Schreyer Honors College. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in the arts.

Danielle Spewak is a sophomore Art Education major and Student Council Secretary who is becoming very interested in sculpture. Born and raised in the Poconos, Spewak has a deep relationship with the environment. Her hobbies include hiking, gardening, reptile care, long walks with her dog, and anything art. She is an instructor at the Penn State Center for Arts and Crafts. While on the SoVA Student Council, Spewak hopes to increase the sense of community within the SoVA student body.

Elise Warfield, Student Council Treasurer, is a fifth-year student who doesn’t plan on leaving anytime soon, because she thinks Penn State SoVA is pretty cool. Elise is a B.F.A. student with a focus concentration of drawing and painting, and is also pursuing a minor in French and Francophone Studies. She also works on various projects with the Hump Day Gallery, and enjoys attending events that help foster a sense of community among SoVA students. Elise was raised in State College, so in her free time, she enjoys traveling and experiencing life outside of Central Pennsylvania.

Colin Miller is a freshman at Penn State, and the Web Coordinator for the School of Visual Arts Student Council. He is pursuing a B.F.A. in New Media and a minor in Communications. Colin is particularly interested in how social media affects the world today and how artists can utilize these media platforms for their benefit. He hoped to be an excellent resource not only for School of Visual Arts Student Council but also for faculty, new students, and other artists at Penn State. 

Follow the SoVA Student Council on Social Media


Instagram: @sovastudentcouncil