MAE

Student Profiles

Hannah Neifert

My undergraduate degree is in art history/museum studies from Randolph College located in Lynchburg, VA. Upon graduating in 2014, I interned at the Lyric Opera of Chicago where I first gained interest in education programs within art institutions/organizations. In the next couple of years I worked as a research assistant with the VMFA’s education department and an educator with the Valentine museum. During this time, I quickly discovered how much I enjoyed interacting with students both in a classroom and museum setting.

My passion for art and education and a growing interest in expanding my own studio skills led to my interest in applying to VCU’s MAE + Licensure track. After meeting faculty members and a current student in the Art Education department, I knew this program was the right one for me!

What has surprised you most about the VCU art education program?

The compassion of our professors! They make themselves available to us, and they understand that we are all learning together.

Why did you want to go to graduate school? Why did you choose VCU?

I decided to apply to graduate school because I wanted to shift gears in my professional career, and I knew that graduate school would provide me with the resources and experience necessary to do so. I chose VCU for a variety of reasons including proximity and reputation, but also because I was able to meet professors and currents students at the Art Education open house, which confirmed my interest in the program.

 

Roxanne Brown

I have been teaching Elementary, Middle & High School Art in Hampton City Schools for 30 years. I am National Board Certified and Gifted Endorsed.  I’ve been teaching AP Studio, AP Art History and IB Visual Arts for the past 10 years. I have exhibited art in several local juried art exhibitions and won a few recognitions. I have also served on several local community arts boards for multiple terms. I am currently Instructional Leader for my school’s Fine Arts Department, Art Honor Society Sponsor, Odyssey of the Mind Coach and PTA Reflections Contest Chairperson for my school.

What were you doing before coming to VCU?

Before coming to VCU’s graduate school, I was teaching art in Hampton City Schools.

What has been the best part of your experience here?

The best part of my experience here has been reconnecting with a community of art passionate educators.

What has surprised you most about the VCU art education program?

What has surprised me most about the VCU art education program has been the faculty’s connection to and influence on current trends/practices in art education. Our faculty represent the movers and shakers of contemporary art education. Also, finding myself working collaboratively with art education students in Finland in a service-learning class has been sublime!

 

Patrick Carter

Patrick Carter holds a BFA in Craft and Material Studies, with a focus in weaving, from Virginia Commonwealth University. After graduating, he stayed in Richmond and worked for several local weavers. He has also taken classes at Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina. His current focus is on translating drawings to woven cloth through the technique of warp painting. In addition to maintaining his studio practice, Patrick teaches workshops at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond.

What were you doing before coming to VCU?

Before VCU, I was teaching weaving workshops at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond and volunteering at a local elementary school. These experiences helped me discover my passion for teaching and motivated me to pursue licensure.

What has surprised you most about the VCU art education program?

A surprise for me was realizing the scope of the field – there are so many ways to utilize a degree in art education! I am glad to know there are opportunities for art educators in museums, art centers, and community programs. I have enjoyed learning more about these opportunities and how I can apply what I am learning in this program to those settings.

What would you say to someone who is applying to this program?

Reach out to the faculty, visit Richmond, tour the campus, and chat with current students! Everyone is really friendly and my favorite thing about this program is the network of faculty, peers, and collaborators I have developed during my time here.

 

Andrew Bell

Andrew Bell is a certified art teacher from suburban Chicago who has been teaching elementary and secondary art for the past 10 years. He is a maker, a painter, a photographer, and a graphic designer.

Tell us about your experience with the art education community at VCU?

I attended undergrad in a cornfield without the same experiential access that Richmond offers. This city has a wide breadth of art centers, community spaces, galleries, and museums all with very strong VCU relationships. Being at VCUarts has connected me to a litany of organizations and people who have expanded my worldview. Richmond has many of the same art world benefits of living in a major metropolitan center without the regular stressors one would expect.

What can you do now that you couldn’t do before?

I came in ready for the traditional model of school where I would be passively fed information and then regurgitate said information for an exam. Instead I have been given a skillset that allows me to research and understand information in a way that will continue in a self-replicating manner well beyond my time here. All members of the faculty share their amazing strengths as researchers with the students, allowing us to reframe our thinking through a critical and contemporary lens.

 

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