Meet Three Trinity Student Artists
Amara Fraley ’08
School of Professional Studies
Major: Business Administration with minors in Music and Economics
Hometown: Newton, MA
With a mother who sings and teaches opera at MIT, Amara Fraley has truly studied music her entire life. As a teenager, she performed with the Greater Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra and earned a full scholarship with the String Training and Educational Program (STEP) which is sponsored by the New England Conservatory, Boston Symphony Orchestra and Boston University School of the Arts. Project STEP enabled Fraley to take music classes at the New England Conservatory and have private string training lessons with Boston Symphony Orchestra members. Accomplished in the violin, viola and piano, she considers voice to be her primary instrument. “I heard opera in utero and there has never been anything else for me. I feel opera in my spirit,” Fraley explains.
She moved from New England to the DC area because she felt she had accomplished everything that was musically possible in New England, and she wanted to be closer to her first nephew. Fraley enrolled part-time in Trinity’s School of Professional Studies to study business administration. “I want to be able to run myself as a business – to market myself and negotiate my own contracts.” Additionally, a business background will give Fraley “something to fall back on.”
After studying part-time while working full-time for six years, Fraley realized she was making a backwards investment in herself. She dramatically downsized her life to be able to go to school full-time, while still working part-time.
Even as a business administration major, Fraley has taken full advantage of the music opportunities in the liberal arts curriculum at Trinity, taking both voice and piano classes through her music minor.
“Every semester I find more and more reasons to love Trinity! I love taking classes with so many women, love the diversity of campus and love that we were founded by Sisters of Notre Dame. Truly this place is blessed!”
Raised by a single mom, Fraley continues to find inspiration in the many strong examples of Trinity alumnae. After meeting women from the 1950s and 1960s at a recent alumnae luncheon, she noted, “I cannot say enough about how empowering it is to meet Trinity graduates. The accomplishments of Trinity women inspire me to spread my own wings!”
Fraley is a young woman whose dreams soar as strongly as her voice. After a grand graduation celebration this May, she hopes to continue her Trinity education in the MBA program. She’ll also work full-time in the finance field and continue her personal voice lessons. Then, Fraley plans to begin auditioning for a second master’s degree – this time it will be for a master’s in Opera.
Ramona Douglas ’08
College of Arts and Sciences
Major: Fine Arts with a concentration in Music Performance
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
Ramona Douglas’s father is a professional musician, so music has always been part of her life. Yet, she says, “I chose it on my own because it is what I truly love; music is my great passion.”
Douglas initially came Washington, DC to attend Catholic University, but transferred to Trinity after earning a scholarship here. She is especially grateful for the small classes at Trinity which allow each student to develop a personal relationship with the faculty. Professors here are “always rooting for you. You’re not just a number at Trinity.”
The Trinity fine arts major is a combination of studio art, dance, music and art history. A concentration in music performance means Douglas has taken hours of private lessons in her primary instrument, the flute. She will also perform a recital to fulfill a requirement for graduation.
Douglas loves living in Washington because the city has “a little bit of everything. It is so culturally diverse. There are opportunities to see live music, dancing and even to go to outdoor concerts.” It’s certainly no surprise that this fine arts major has taken advantage of the arts scene in DC, but she’s also developed an interest in politics and has taken many of her electives through the political science department.
That’s just part of her liberal arts education, for which she is grateful. “In the liberal arts you are exposed to so much. Taking classes in many different areas allows you to become more open-minded and to think critically.”
After graduation in May, Douglas plans to attend graduate school for music education and hopes to continue in her father’s footsteps by teaching high school music.
Mary Kathleen “Kate” Loughran ’08
College of Arts and Sciences
Major: History with a minor in Art History
Hometown: Rockville, MD
Kate Loughran started taking classes at Trinity because her older sister was an adjunct professor here. She initially thought she would stay for a semester or two while deciding where to transfer. Four years later, Loughran is about to graduate. She explains, “When I took classes with the likes of Sr. Mary Hayes, Dr. Mary Lynn Rampolla and Dr. Rebecca Easby, I knew Trinity was the school for me.”
At Trinity, Loughran has been able to combine her love of history with her love of art and music, she notes, “In every culture and society, the arts are at the heart of everything. You can’t have a well-rounded education without the arts.”
Classes like The Age of Dictators taught by Dr. Susan Farnsworth and Victorian Studies, taught collaboratively by Farnsworth and Easby have allowed her to explore history and art at the same time. In Age of Dictators, for example, Loughran’s final paper looked at Hitler as an artist. And, Victorian Studies, “combined everything I love! What a great class.”
Loughran has also taken voice classes at Trinity. She sang in middle and high school but ultimately thought she’d have to give it up. When she came to Trinity she took advantage of the opportunity to study with voice professor Sarah Maines and says, “I’m amazed at how much I’ve progressed in voice under her guidance.” Loughran has performed in a recital each semester and looks forward to singing in this semester’s theatre production.
After graduating this May, Loughran plans to move to Santa Fe, New Mexico, to work in an art gallery. Someday she hopes to own her own gallery.