NICOLE BALTZER

Carnegie Mellon University, Theatrical Lighting Design Major

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Are you planning to attend graduate school?

Yes, I am planning to go to Yale to get my Master’s in Lighting Design.

How did MSF help you prepare for college?

It helped to alleviate some stress.

Did finances affect your choice of school or major?

I would have tried to just start working in the theatrical lighting industry as a technician rather than going to school to become a designer.

In addition to the MSF scholarship, what other types of financial aid or support did you use?

Student loans and minor scholarships from the local organizations I was connected to in high school.

Once you complete your studies, what is your plan for the future?

My plan is to move to New York City and pay my dues to become a NYC Lighting Designer.

What would you say to current MHS seniors who seek financial aid?

Apply to everything and treat them like your college application essays, but be prepared that you need to think about 4 years’ worth of financial aid – not just the first year.

What do you remember best about being in the town of Montclair and/or attending Montclair High School?

SVPA’s Tech theater club is what got me serious on the path of backstage theater and gave me the confidence that I wanted to pursue this as a lifelong passion.

If MSF could improve one thing, what would that be?

Helping students understand that looking for financial aid to finance their education is a four year commitment and help them grasp the concept of that.