Filmon Abraham Parlays Passions for Psychology, Art & Technology

Zag Grads 2019

May 09, 2019
Story and video by Harry Smith ('21)

SPOKANE, Wash. — Filmon Abraham, a graduating senior from Seattle, has parlayed his passions for psychology, art and technology at Gonzaga University into a cutting-edge career path that he will pursue this fall when he begins a master’s degree at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, one of the nation’s premier art schools.

Abraham, who is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in art, was recently accepted into the two-year Tisch Interactive Telecommunications Program, which explores the imaginative use of communications technologies and how they might improve people’s lives.

Abraham entered Gonzaga studying psychology but felt a need to tap into his creative side.

“I took an art class when I was studying abroad and fell in love with art all over again,” Abraham said. “When I got back, I immediately went to the art department and said, ‘I need to get a degree in this.’”

Shalon Parker, Ph.D., associate professor of art and chair of the department, said Abraham has been an inspiration.

“Even though Filmon started taking classes for the art minor somewhat later than other students in the program, he fully immersed himself into the creative process and has generated this year some of the most visually rich and discerning artworks coming out of the upper-division art classes,” Parker said. “My colleagues and I have been so impressed with his work ethic, his courage to take risks in his art, and his eagerness to dive right into new challenges.”

Abraham appreciates how Gonzaga allowed him to shape his education. A graduate of Seattle Prep, where he served as president of the Black Student Union and in student government, Abraham worked this past year as a graphic designer for The Gonzaga Bulletin, a weekly campus newspaper run by the students.

“At Gonzaga I tried every way to merge my interests. I was interested in my psych classes and I overlapped them with my art classes, which I found very rewarding because it was like I was creating my own degree,” he said.

Although Abraham did not study computer science per se at Gonzaga, he continued to educate himself.

“The tech part I did outside of school through internships but I still have a lot to learn,” he said.

He aims to find a career where he can combine all of his interests.

“I am interested in user-experience design, primarily for mobile technologies. It’s not background coding but more so visual designs,” Abraham said. “My dream is to work for a company like Google.”

He explained more about the Tisch School program.

“It works within the industry of human-computer interaction, which is an umbrella term for studying how we interact with all kinds of tech,” he said. “Overall it will be a really safe and experimental creative space to work on cool designs within tech.”

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