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Career Day Returns to Pingry with Keynote Speaker Buzzy Cohen '03

"This is much more intimidating than being on Jeopardy!"

Pingry's Career Day returned this year in a new hybrid format. After a keynote address from Buzzy Cohen '03, students attended three breakout sessions with nearly 50 alumni panelists, as they had done in years past, with panelists having the option to attend in-person or remotely. Mr. Cohen is the Founder/Director of The Teenage Diplomat, a full-service company that improves the branding experience by helping clients with music composition and supervision. 

"I'm still figuring out the 'career' thing as I go," said Mr. Cohen. Beginning in music publishing, Mr. Cohen moved to LA and transitioned into tech. He then made the leap to advertising, producing high-profile and award-winning work for Adidas, Apple, and more.

"Everyone is a salesperson," Mr. Cohen said, in a statement that he himself described as 'controversial.' But to be successful in any career, he said, it helps to think of oneself as a salesperson. "One, have a unique offering," Mr. Cohen said. "Two, position yourself and your offering as the solution to the 'customer's' problem." He shared a few anecdotes from his career where he made an impression by solving a problem with an 'out-of-pocket' idea—playing a song he knew his client would enjoy, even though it wasn't what they asked for; applying to be an intern at a music publisher that had no formal internship program; and even telling late Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek that he wanted his job.

Mr. Cohen put it into terms students could relate to. During his sophomore year, he started a three-person Quiz Bowl "B-Team" that out-performed the full team of seniors. When those seniors graduated, Mr. Cohen was left to carry on the legacy: "And that's how I became the captain of the Quiz Bowl team my junior year." Later during the day, Pingry's current Quiz Bowl team had a chance to meet and speak with Mr. Cohen–as did US Jazz students and his former music teachers, Sean McAnally and Andrew Moore.

"An important way to solve peoples' problems—an important way to bring a unique offering—is to go beyond the defined role, beyond the defined expectations. And, worst case scenario . . . [you can always] start your own club."

Watch Mr. Cohen's Keynote Address

See photos from Career Day


Scott M. Loikits '90 — AIA Managing Director of Design, GreenbergFarrow (virtual)
Andrew Werner '04 — Senior Associate Principal , Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates PC (virtual)
Melinda Zoephel '08 — Exhibition Designer, Evidence Design (virtual)

Evan Shore '02 — Director of Product, Health & Wellness, Walmart  (virtual)
Lauren Salz '06 — Co-Founder and CEO, Sealed (in-person)
Sumeet Shah '04 — Venture Partnerships, Clearco (in-person)
Buzzy Cohen '03 — Founder/Director, The Teenage Diplomat (in-person)

Finance A:
Kate (Martuscello) Smith '00 — VP of People, Harry's Inc. (in-person)
​​Ama Burnham '99 — Director - Equity Derivatives Sales, Bank of America  (virtual)
Ben Lehrhoff '99 — Principal, AllianceBernstein  (in-person)

Finance B:
Lori Siegel Rabinowitz '97 — Senior Vice President, Morgan Stanley  (in-person)
Justin Chae '16 — Private Wealth Associate, AllianceBernstein  (in-person)
Kevin Schmidt '98 — Consultant, RVK, Inc.  (in-person)
Uma Seshamani '98 — Managing Director, MNAHVI Group  (virtual)

Government Relations:
David Martin '10 — Government Affairs Manager, Harley-Davidson Motor Company (in-person)
Keith Castaldo '00 — Government Relations, Subject Matter (virtual)
Christopher Shahidi '94 — Foreign Services Officer, U.S. Department of State (in-person)

Law A:
Tanya Fickenscher '89 — Vice President, Deputy General Counsel, Major League Baseball (in-person)
Rob Kao '99 — Partner, Sidley Austin LLP (in-person)
Ryan Sellinger '07 — Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia  (virtual)

Law B:
Chandra C. Davis '89 — Partner, The Employment Law Solution: McFadden Davis, LLC  (virtual)
Frank J. Morano '97 — Counsel, Argentino Fiore Law & Advocacy, LLC (in-person)
Kristin Sostowski '93 — Management-Side Employment Attorney | Director, Gibbons P.C. (in-person)

Management Consulting:
Alison Little '82 — Principal, KPMG (in-person)
Christian Hoffman '94 — Global Cyber Leader, Aon plc (in-person)
Katherine Curran '14 — Consultant, Deloitte (in-person)

Lauren Holland '01 — Chief Omni Sales & Strategy Officer, Neptune Retail Solutions (virtual)
Doug Clarke '02 — Senior Vice President, Wheels Up (virtual)
Katie Griff '03 — Founder & CEO, Griff Consulting LLC (in-person)

Corey DeLaney '12 — Consultant, Two Circles (virtual)
Chloe Sorvino '11 — Staff Writer, Forbes (virtual)
Diamond McClintock '10 — Talent Brand Lead, Squarespace (virtual)

Medicine A:
Patrick Reid '97 — Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery, Columbia University (in-person)
Matthew S.T. Chow '81 — MD, Anesthesia Associates of Morristown (in-person)
Alison Gattuso '98 — Attending Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgeon, St. Christopher's Hospital for Children (in-person)

Medicine B:
Kate Coyle '03 — Dentist, Coyle Dentistry (in-person)
Ari Marciscano '03 —  Radiation Oncologist/Physician-Scientist, Weill Cornell Medical College (in-person)
Brittney S. Jordan '05 — Licensed Clinical Psychologist, VA New York Harbor-Manhattan Campus (virtual)

Performing Arts:
Jazmin Palmer '16 — Cofounder/performer, Soft Brain Theatre Company (virtual)
Dana Zolli '03 — Unit Production Manager, ABC Signature Studios (in-person)

Meredith Skiba '08 — Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard Medical School (in-person)
Brooke Conti Trousdale '09 — Postdoctoral Fellow, Pfizer (in-person)
Alexandra Logerfo'11 — Ph.D. Student, Rutgers University (in-person)
Jesse McLaughlin (He/Him)'17 — Civic Scientist, New York University (in-person)

Zack Cordero '06 — Boeing Assistant Professor, MIT (virtual)
Alyssa Baum '14 — Senior Software Engineer, Google (in-person)
Jennifer Nahvi-Sickles '95 — Director, Johnson & Johnson Technology (virtual)

Visual Arts:
Christine Aschwald Class '02 — Senior Director Head of Advisory, Artsy
Reba Kittredge Tyson '12 — Artist (in-person)
Sarah Kurz '99 — Artist

Contact: Ed Lisovicz, Advancement Writer