Welcome to the May 2022 edition of the Alumni & Friends E-Newsletter. This month, we’re sharing spotlights on a Communications alumna who worked on Capitol Hill, as well as a professor from the School of Business who’s had a unique career path from architecture to academia. We’re also sharing the accomplishments of three Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) alumnae, in honor of May being AAPI Heritage Month.


Jocelyn Garay '12 received her bachelor's in Communications with a concentration in Public Relations and Speech Communications from Marymount. She is currently a Senior Associate at the Dewey Square Group, a public affairs firm, in their Latinovations practice. In her role, she focuses on local and nationwide Latino outreach for their clients, writing op-eds and talking points, providing translations, and working with Spanish media and public relations. Her role also includes media training, debate preparation and crisis communications.

Previously, Jocelyn did outreach work for the Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital and worked on Capitol Hill for Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez and Congressman Don Beyer, focusing on Latino outreach. She was also the Coalitions Director for Senator Mark Warner’s successful 2020 re-election campaign where she helped build relationships with affinity groups and grassroots organizations in VA.

While a student at Marymount, Jocelyn was very involved on campus, showing her school spirit as a cheerleader and also serving as President of the Latino Student Association. In her free time, Jocelyn enjoys volunteering with nonprofits, raising money for projects in El Salvador, traveling with her husband and playing with her adorable 1-year-old French Bulldog named Renzo.

In honor of May being Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we're highlighting the achievements of three accomplished Marymount alumnae. Read about them below:

Marian Lumba '14

Since graduating in 2014 with a bachelor’s in Information Technology, Marian has worked in tech for different industries. Currently, she is a software engineer at Demosphere where she builds web applications for sports organizations. Marian believes in giving back and often volunteers with local meetups in order to share her knowledge with the community and encourage underrepresented groups to start their careers in tech. In 2021, she received a D.C. Fem Tech award for her contributions at work and in the tech community.


Mimi Miller '15

Mimi Miller, Womenswear empowers women to evolve from settling for conventional clothing to embracing refined pieces for an integration of quality and effortless style. 

Founded in 2015 in Washington, D.C., Mimi decided that she was tired of revealing designs that failed to align with her taste and values. After earning her bachelor’s in Fashion Design from Marymount, she decided to take matters into her own hands and develop pieces that honored slow fashion, the simplicity of loose-fitting silhouettes and timeless patterns.

Mimi's garments are refined, versatile, and comfortable with a focus on ethical production and sustainability. She loves the challenge of dressing the everyday woman – someone who may be a stay at home mom, an entrepreneur, or the woman who has a nine to five job in the city. When someone purchases a garment from her, Mimi wants them to consider it an investment and something they'll be able to wear for years, not just one or two seasons. In addition to clothing, Mimi has recently began offering sustainable garment care products in addition to an exclusive, unisex botanical fragrance.


Ally Balmaceda-Dela Cruz '21

Allyssia (Ally) Balmaceda-Dela Cruz is a first-generation college graduate with a bachelor's in Information Technology and a specialty in Applied Cybersecurity. Her passion for cybersecurity and the IT field grew from her experiences in high school attending annual GenCyber summer camps, a cyber education initiative created for high schoolers sponsored by the NSA and the NSF, that were offered by Marymount.

After graduation from MU, Ally went on to kick start her career at Amazon in the Amazon Web Services (AWS) division as a Global IT Support Engineer. In her strong desire to keep learning, she was recently granted a scholarship of $17,000 to attend a Flatiron Schools cybersecurity bootcamp within her first six months at the company to upskill and become a future Systems Engineer for AWS. In the future, she aspires to become a Cloud Security Engineer for AWS.


Dr. Carlo Ninassi is an Assistant Professor in the School of Business at Marymount. He received a bachelor’s from Penn State in arts & architecture, a bachelor’s from University of Maryland System in microbiology, a master’s from University of Maryland System in financial management, a doctorate from Colorado Technical University in management (strategy), and post executive education in strategy from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Before he became a professor at Marymount, Dr. Ninassi started his career as an architect, then worked as a management consultant for almost two decades. He served as the Director of Strategic and Organizational Planning for Jacobs Consultancy, a division of Jacobs, a Fortune 500 Company. He also previously taught at Penn State at the Smeal College of Business.

Dr. Ninassi has been involved with Marymount since 1999, when he first started as an adjunct professor. Today, he teaches courses such as strategy, international business and a senior seminar capstone on business planning. In the spring of 2020, Dr. Ninassi was selected by his students to be awarded the Robert A. Draghi Award for Outstanding Faculty Member.

Outside of the classroom, Dr. Ninassi was appointed in 2018 (and reappointed for a second term in 2022) to serve as a Commissioner on Arlington County’s Economic Development Commission. He works with County officials and the community to enhance the region, while also serving on task forces and engaging students in community volunteer projects.

In his free time, Dr. Ninassi enjoys running marathons and also loves to cook (especially homemade pizza).

This past month, Campus Ministry celebrated our Risen Lord and is preparing to celebrate our rising graduates! Our second annual Glow in the Dark Easter Egg Hunt (held in the Reinsch Library lower level) was a huge success! 

For our Muslim Students, Ramadan is drawing to a close and the Muslim Students Association broke their Ramadan fast together in Ballston with a very well attended Iftar! 

As part of our Earth Week celebrations, Ministry and Spiritual Life partnered with Dr. Brian Flanagan from our Theology program in placing a temporary prayer labyrinth on the lower Ireton Lawn. The labyrinth included questions and quotations from Laudato Si, Pope Francis’ Encyclical on the Environment, to guide the reflections and prayers of those journeying through the labyrinth.

MSL also partnered with the Office of Wellness during Sexual Assault Awareness Month to host a prayer vigil and safe space for survivors of sexual assault. The vigil began with a candlelit prayer led by Father Gabriel in the Chapel, followed by a procession to the Office of Wellness, with time for poetry, prayers, reflection and sharing. 

Finally, MSL staff, especially Father Gabriel, will be active participants in celebrating our graduating seniors and graduate students. All are invited to the Baccalaureate Mass, which will be celebrated on Saturday, May 14 at 2 p.m. in the Lee Center.

  • Women's Golf Wins Centennial Championship, Qualifies for NCAAs. Read more here
  • Men's Tennis Wins First Atlantic East Title. Read more here
  • Men's Volleyball's Perkins, Kerekes Named to All-American Team. Read more here.
  • Both men's and women's lacrosse earn #2 seed in Atlantic East playoffs, will host semifinals on Wednesday 5/4.

Commencement 2022

Live streaming link will be available at the website above.

Friday, May 13

  • 10:00 am – Commencement for the College of Health and Education
  • 4:00 pm – Nursing Pinning Ceremony – in the Upper Gym on Main Campus

Saturday, May 14

  • 10:00 am – Commencement for the College of Sciences and Humanities
  • 2:00 pm – Baccalaureate Mass – in the Upper Gym on Main Campus
  • 4:00 pm – Recognition Award Ceremony – in the Upper Gym on Main Campus

Sunday, May 15

  • 10:00 am – Commencement for the College of Business, Innovation, Leadership & Technology

Save the Date: Athletics Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Dinner

Thursday, October 13, 2022

The Westin Arlington Gateway

Click here to nominate a former player, coach or team.


More info on Homecoming 2022 will be provided here.

A group of alumnae recently got together for a luncheon at Ellen Whelan Melvin’s '62 home in Vero Beach, Florida:

From left to right: Neepy DeCastro '61, Ellen Whelan Melvin '62, Bonnie Budke Brown '62, Carol Valle Bernstein '62, Eileen O’Donnell Reilly '62, Kerry Walker Walsh '62.


Carol Valle Bernstein '62, Ellen Whelan Melvin '62, and Kerry Walker Walsh '62.

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Advancement Information Systems Manager - Marymount

HR Coordinator

Pricing Analyst

Sr Analyst, Accounting & Reporting

2807 North Glebe Road Arlington, Virginia 22207