A Department of Homeland Security Emeritus Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

START Intern's Brief Foray into Daytime Television


START Intern's Brief Foray into Daytime Television

November 20, 2014Rachael Romano

Some of us dream of walking down the street while wearing our favorite pair of jeans, hoping to have a modeling agent pull us aside and land us a role on the latest soap opera. For Alexander Blass, a senior marketing and finance major and global terrorism studies minor at UMD, this dream was a reality. Except he wasn’t sporting his favorite pair of jeans; he was wearing a pumpkin hat.

Blass and his twin brother were only babies when, one Halloween, an agent spotted them and told their mother to contact the agency.

“A phone call and an audition later we got the part,” Blass said.

Blass and his brother Zach had landed the role of abandoned baby, River Carpenter, on the soap opera One Life to Live. The two were paid actors, and are forever memorialized on the Internet Movie Database IMDb.

Since the whirlwind of fame, Alex has settled down finding a passion in the field of global terrorism studies at the University of Maryland.

He currently interns at START as a Dataverse Assistant Editor under Michael Distler, preparing research to be archived onto the START Dataverse page. Alex hopes to gain practical experience in terrorism research from this internship.

“I would like to work as a counter-terrorism practitioner for a government agency,” Blass said. “If I am not working in the field of global terrorism, I plan on working in finance or entertainment and sports programming back home in New York City.”

While Blass has never considered turning his early stardom into a career, he does say he would be open to returning to the spotlight for a special event.

“If, for some miraculous reason, they asked me to come back for a reunion episode, I’d be open to it,” Blass admits. “However, I am really hoping the E! News channel interviews my brother and I for a child star episode of ‘Where are They Now?’.”