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Art Department Hosts Panel on “Graduate School in the Arts”


The Art Department recently presented a panel discussion on “Graduate School in the Arts.” Panelists included Didier William from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Andrea Frank from SUNY Purchase, and Matt Sepielli from Tyler School of Art. The panel was moderated by Professor of Art Rebecca Murtaugh.

Sepielli began by asking students who were thinking about graduate school to raise their hands — 75% of the students quickly threw their arms in the air.

The discussion that followed contained a little something for everyone, even those who may never go on to attend graduate school but want to pursue their art practice in a cultural art center after graduation.

The importance of a deep commitment to artistic growth, building community, developing one's voice, critical dialogue, networking, and focused uninterrupted time in the studio were cited as the roots of graduate study and growing as an artist.

Important considerations to make when deciding on a school, including geography, financial package, teaching opportunities, resources, and facilities, were also discussed. The panelists noted that finding a good fit can further be determined by a campus visit and interviews with faculty and current students.

The panel also addressed such topics as how students can be best prepared, considering summer intensives, post-baccalaureate study, and how to put together a successful portfolio, which is the most important part of the graduate application.

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