David Fraioli, '87

Major: Electrical Engineering

Project: An Actor’s Complex of Patterns and Processes. For my humanities requirement, I wrote about my experiences as an actor at WPI. I talked about acting theory, compared the characters I played, and tried to articulate my process as an actor.

Why I chose this project:
I realized that I wanted to be an actor and that it was more than a hobby; I needed to go deeper into the process and my own motivation.

What I learned from this project:
I discovered that acting requires total commitment and concentration and that these were qualities I already possessed. Although I had no formal acting training, I could rely on my own inner life and desire to enter the playwright’s world.

How I have benefitted from this experience as a person and a student:
It gave me confidence in myself as an actor and propelled me into pursuing acting as a full-time career.

How this experience made me stronger in my field:
By committing to acting in the midst of an engineering education, it was clear to me that my love for acting was not dependent on anyone or anything, and that has taught me patience and endurance in pursuing it. Working with Professor Susan Vick was like watering seeds that needed time and the right conditions to grow. Now I feel like that good upbringing has resulted in a strong, healthy tree.

Additional comments about the project system in general at WPI:
I probably would not have embarked on an acting career had it not been for Susan’s teaching and guidance, and the philosophy of education at WPI. I am thankful to her, the Department of Humanities, and to WPI for encouraging students to think big and outside their chosen field for realizing their full and surprising potential.

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