From Saturday Night Live to real estate alum is continuously exploring

"To me, liberal arts is about change. It's about continuously exploring yourself and new ideas," Maria (Constantine) Vecchione '86 said. From acting, to television, to real estate, Vecchione has embraced her own evolving career path.

Vecchione majored in political science at Gettysburg, but spent most of her time in Kline Theatre."I wasn't involved in acting until sophomore year when I met Professor Emile Schmidt," she said. "He had a way of taking people under his wings and bringing out their passions.

"Following graduation, Vecchione moved to New York City in the hope of getting into the entertainment business. With off-Broadway internships and casting positions at talent agencies, she built her credentials before entering the field of production in the early 1990s. In September 1990 she married fellow Gettysburgian, Matt Vecchione '87.

Vecchione's experience in music video and commercial production landed her a job with Saturday Night Live in 1992. As a production manager there, she helped create many of the pre-recorded commercial parodies and skits, such as the well-known figure skating piece with Chris Farley and Nancy Kerrigan. "Adam Sandler, Mike Myers - all those guys were on SNL then," she said."And when the musicians for that night rehearsed, the staff got a private concert. It was a fun time."

Vecchione left Saturday Night Live in 1995 and moved to the Lifetime Network, where she worked as production manager for multiple home design and cooking shows, including The Main Ingredient with Bobby Flay, one of his first television ventures.

It was the home design shows that piqued a whole new interest for Vecchione. "New York architecture and home design were things that attracted me to the city," she said. "Learning about it every day led me into real estate."

After the birth of the first of their two sons, the Vecchiones moved out of the city, and Vecchione began a real estate career in northern New Jersey. "One of the best things about being an agent is helping home buyers envision design ideas," Vecchione said. "I just recently received my Green Realtor Certificate so I can also educate clients on the importance of having an environmentally friendly home." She is now the leading sales agent in the Montclair and Glen Ridge areas.

"I don't have just one interest and never had," Vecchione said. "Gettysburg's liberal arts education has allowed me to use my interests to create who I am, to never become stagnant."

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition. Alumni include Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate, and other distinguished scholars. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania

Contact: Nikki Rhoads, assistant director of communications, 717.337.6803

Posted: Mon, 16 May 2011

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