Alumnus Ramen Cromwell returns to WHS


Credit: Eden Vanslette

Alumni Ramen Cromwell helps students in game that he organized for Winter Week while visiting WHS.

Last week, Wayland High School alumnus, Ramen Cromwell, made his return to Wayland to talk to past teachers and classes.

Cromwell, a METCO student, graduated from WHS in 1993 and went to Vassar College to become an English major. Cromwell later found English wasn’t what he wanted to pursue and switched his major to film studies. On the first day of his senior film class, Cromwell accidentally missed the introductory assignment and was told by his professor that there was no way he could take the class after doing so. Cromwell then had no choice but to find an internship in the film industry to replace the course. He landed an internship at a post-production company. Without this internship in the late ’90s, he wouldn’t have landed his job and 15-year career at ABC News.

At Wayland High School, Crowell was recognized by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People for an original dramatic performance.

According to IMDb,“In high school, Ramen was recognized by the NAACP Act-So competition for his Gold Medal performance of an original monologue, Power Up Today: Prelude to Another Black Male Suicide,” IMDb said.

At the turn of the century, Cromwell made promotional ads for ABC News. The first major event he covered was the presidential election of 2000, between George Bush and Al Gore.

Beyond promotional ads, Cromwell produced interesting short-documentary pieces with celebrities. Notably, Cromwell produced a piece on Beyoncè Knowles, titled “I am Yours.”

“Beyonce has a production team that kind of cocoons her, so she had a guy who worked with her every day,” Cromwell said. “If you looked at that piece, we did a special pick-up shoot. We did interact with her, and did a special interview with her.”

Cromwell has also done pieces with Michael J Fox and Christiane Amanpour.

“We did this big piece with Michael J. Fox, and it was cool because he was actually in the room,” Cromwell said. “[And with] Christiane Amanpour, we were working with her on a cool, big religious special. She was also very hands-on and in the room. Those are my favorite two people that I worked with more clearly.”

Cromwell rounded out his tenure at ABC after the 2016 election; he made a promotional video about the first presidential debate. During his time at ABC News, Cromwell won many awards for short films and even judged documentaries for the Emmys.

“When you start at a spot like ABC, or any company, there are tracks that you get on,” Cromwell said. “I started in promotions and even though I branched out and got a chance to produce content, I kind of ended up back in promotions. Having been there for as long as I was, I was ready for a change.”

Cromwell decided a change was necessary. With his wife and two girls, Cromwell had to decide where to go next.

“There were opportunities in New York, but I have so much family in Massachusetts,” Cromwell said. “And because I got married and had two kids, [all done] basically in the last five years, [Massachusetts] just seemed like a better place for us to be. I was at the point in my career where I was done with the promotion thing per se. It made it easier than opposed to if I was just starting off, and was like ‘Oh I need to stay here and earn my stripes.’ So it was definitely for family reasons that I left, but it made it easier because I’d been there so long and I was ready to do something else.”

Cromwell now lives in the Boston area is a freelance producer who has worked with companies such as PBS.