Immediately following high school, Alan attended Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri as a pre-med student in Electrical Engineering. After coming to his senses, he took a one and a half year sabbatical from school at which time he worked at Robin Color Lab in Cincinnati. There he helped manage the business, interact with customers, and learn the craft of custom colour printing for a commercial colour lab whose principal clients were advertising photographers and advertising agencies. He was also able to get a good taste of the advertising photography industry.
Alan returned to school, this time attending Syracuse University Newhouse School of Public Communications. At Newhouse, Alan took courses in a variety of disciplines including: communication law, advertising, graphic design, typography, tv production, film making, and radio production. Alan graduated from Syracuse University Newhouse School of Public Communications with a B.S. in Communications with a major in Advertising Photography and a minor in Art History.