Tisch Graduate Acting alumnus Victor Williams '95, or Deacon Palmer from CBS' long-running hit sitcom, The King of Queens, walked from Cleveland, OH to NYU Tisch, as he and his fellow Graduate Acting alumni raised money for the Batima Tene Cochran Memorial Scholarship Fund. The scholarship provides support for students in the school's Graduate Acting Program, one of the preeminent acting training programs in the country. Proceeds from the event will be added to the previously established scholarship to bring it to endowment level.
Williams collaborated with the Graduate Acting Alumni Association (GAAA) on a 19-day 500 mile walk-a-thon titled The Big Walk, which started August 19th. The Big Walk culminated with Graduate Acting alumni, students and faculty walking the final leg from Pier 79 to 721 Broadway. Walkers were met by more than 100 cheering alumni, who welcomed them to 721 Broadway. In traditional Graduate Acting fashion, a huge party was hosted on the 5th floor, where hundreds joined to pay tribute to the walkers and celebrate Batima's life.
In 1996 at age 25, Batima Tene Cochran, an African-American woman finishing her final year in the Graduate Acting Program, succumbed to a battle with breast cancer. In response to her passing, members of the Tisch School community created a scholarship in her name. Since 1997, this scholarship has provided support for exceptionally talented African-American women. Through the tremendous efforts of the volunteers and donors to The Big Walk, funds have been secured (and continue to be raised) to endow The Batima Tene Cochran Memorial Scholarship Fund, creating a lasting legacy in her name at NYU Tisch School of the Arts.