November 12, 2018

Meet the WAM Collective Cohort of 2018 & 2019

Using a student driven format since its inception in 2011, the WAM Collective places student voices at the center of shaping and developing programming at the Weisman Art Museum. This hands on and fast paced program gives participants the opportunity to work with professional museum staff, artists, advocates, and community members on projects that reflect the concerns, interests and passions of the student perspective.

The group convenes weekly to promote upcoming events, learn about contemporary museum practices, and propose innovative programs that correlate with the vision and mission of the museum. WAM Collective initiatives programs for UMN students, by UMN students, including workshops, pop-ups, guided tours, and digital marketing campaigns that engage the student body with the museums changing schedule and unique resources.



Laurel Darling:  She / her/ hers. Program Committee  Laurel Darling is a senior studying English and art history. Hailing from central South Dakota, Laurel hopes to one day work as a museum curator. In addition being in the Collective, Laurel works at the Weisman as the Administrative Assistant. In her limited free time, she can be found reading, knitting, drag brunching, or trying new restaurants around the Twin Cities.


Madalyn Kay Johnson: She /her/hers Program Committee  Madalyn is a senior studying Strategic Communications and Environmental Science, Policy and Management! Born and raised in Stillwater, Minnesota, she is a natural fan of outdoor activities, tremendous amounts of snow and the Twin Cities. She is incredibly excited and honored to be a part of the vibrant art community in Minneapolis.


Isabella Gold (she/her/hers) Content Committee Isabella Gold is a first year undergraduate student studying art history through the University Honors Program. Born and raised in the Twin Cities, she enjoys exploring the vibrant art scene in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, from the SPCO to the Walker. When not at the WAM, Isabella can be found playing violin in the Campus Orchestra, bouldering, or writing poetry.



Headshot of Sage Caballero

Sage Caballero (they/them) PR Committee Sage Caballero is a Freshman studying Psychology.  They are a photographer and musician with a love for discovering new things.  Sage loves experiencing all different kinds of culture, you’ll often find them in MCAE.  Art has been an essential part of Sage’s life and they are very excited to share it with others.




Alisa Kamenev (she/her/hers) Program Committee  Alisa Kamenev is a senior studying Art History and English with an interest in Late Antique and Medieval art and literature. You can usually find her at work at the UMN Foundation in the McNamara Alumni Center. In her spare time she enjoys watching cooking shows, seeing her friends on the off chance they have free time together, and playing with her mom’s cat.



Sabrina (Ricky) Ford (she/her/hers) PR As Sophomore studying Art and Horticulture with a Floriculture focus, Sabrina Ford is currently interested in creating a more sustainable environment within the floriculture and residential flower industry by conducting research on local flower alternatives that decrease the need for international import, and increase local pollinators. In her free time, Sabrina is almost always found working on her personal creative projects or watching horror films.

Melissa Markay (she/her/hers) PR Committee  Melissa is a senior majoring in Public and Nonprofit Management and Human Resources, with a concentration in Sustainability Studies. After graduation, Melissa plans to pursue nonprofit and development work in the arts. Currently, Melissa works at the University of Minnesota Foundation and is looking forward to finishing up her last year.

Stuart Deets  He/Him/His WAM Programs Assistant, 1st year Ph.D. Student Art History. Originally from Wisconsin, Stuart Deets is an art historian who believes that art, at its best, gives us a means of negotiating our life in common. His art historical work focuses on the Anthropocene (the proposed geologic age in which humans have become the dominant ecological force), and eco-criticism.

Katie Covey: she/her/hers WAM Collective Advisor Katie is the Director of Student Engagement at the Weisman Art Museum. She holds a BA in English Literature and Strategic Communications and a MA in Arts & Cultural Leadership from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Her scholarly work is focused on new models for museum interpretation and audience engagement.


Interested in Collaborating with WAM Collective? Drop us a line at

The WAM Collective program runs concurrently with the school year: meetings are held Wednesdays at the museum from 4–6PM. WAM Collective applications are closed for this year, but please check back in March 2019 for details on next year’s application process.

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