We're thrilled to highlight the founding members of Capital Region Sponsor-A-Scholar's alumni council. These volunteers are aiding us in College Scholar support, event planning and program development. Their experiences as alumni and recent college graduates have been instrumental in helping us to improve many aspects of our College Success programming.
We thank them for their dedication to our mission and their willingness to pay it forward to the next generation of students. We also thank the Sylvester E. Labanowski Fund of the Community Foundation for the Greater Capital Region for its capacity-building grant to launch this program.
Crystal Campbell is a professional school counselor, who works at Green Tech High Charter School in Albany, NY. She earned a bachelor's degree from SUNY Oneonta and a masters in school counseling.
As a part of the guidance department at Green Tech, her goal is to assist students to achieve their academic, personal, social and career goals. As the first person in her family to earn a college degree, she believes that education empowers and transforms the lives of young people. Crystal is a longtime member of the board of Capital Region Sponsor-A-Scholar.
Paul Collins-Hackett works in the Youth Employment Office for the City of Albany. He holds a bachelor's degree from Siena College, and worked for several years in social services before working for the city.
A lifelong resident of Albany, Paul has worked closely with organizations in Albany's South End, and helped to found a local non-profit called TruHeart. Paul has served as a mentor for Sponsor-A-Scholar and he is a member of the board of the Albany Fund for Education.
Camellia Loojune is a Junior Analyst at High Impact. She spreads and analyzes borrower and guarantor financial statements, performs analyses of loan portfolios, and assists in loan underwriting. She has extensive experience working with various social enterprise ventures both nationally and internationally.
Prior to her role with High Impact, Ms. Loojune spent a year in Syracuse, where she focused on community development, strategic planning, and process improvement for the Rescue Mission of Central NY and CenterState CEO. Additionally, she spent two years with PricewaterhouseCoopers as a Forensic Accountant.
Camellia graduated from Schenectady High School and holds Bachelor of Science degrees in both Accounting and Finance from Syracuse University.
George Lopez is a member of Troy High School's Class of 2011 and a Siena College graduate from the Class of 2015. At Siena, he studied communications, sociology, and community development.
A Troy native, George has always been passionate about giving back to the Capital Region, serving with a variety of nonprofit organizations in the area through the programs that ACE offers. As an undergraduate, George served at Green Tech High Charter School through the Bonner Service Leaders Program. After earning his bachelor's degree in creative arts, George spent a postgraduate year as an AmeriCorps VISTA Fellow serving as a project manager with Albany Promise.
As the ACE Coordinator of Community Partnerships, George manages and coordinates the community partners that are engaged with the Center.
After graduating from Albany High School in 2012, Kolel went on to earn a BFA in 3D Digital Design from the Rochester Institute of Technology.
He is now working locally as the Art Director at Catapult Games, an indie Virtual Reality game company, where he works on art asset development and implementation as well as writing code. In his free time, he strives to give back to those who have helped him along the way including Sponsor-A-Scholar and FIRST Robotics.
He also stays connected with the Capital Region's growing video game scene with his involvement in the Tech Valley Game Space and attendance of various tech meetups.
Are you an alumnus who is interested in getting involved? Email Robin Christenson at firstname.lastname@example.org