Notes from the Dean

Message from the Dean

Archived Dean's Messages

February 03, 2024

I trust your 2024 is off to a good start. As the month of February begins, things are humming along in the College of Arts and Architecture. Our calendar of performances, exhibitions, lectures, and other events is in full swing. If you check out the calendar, you will also see our new college website, which launched in early January. It offers improved navigability, easy access to news and events, updated profile pages for both faculty and staff, and a host of other features that should enhance the experience for all users. This new look for the website is just the first step. We will continuously make content updates, so check back from time to time. A huge thanks to WPSU and the college’s Marketing and Communications team, who worked together to launch the site.

The college, like our web presence, is constantly evolving. Our faculty and students are increasingly involved in impactful, influential, and interdisciplinary work, demonstrating how our research and creative activity reaches far beyond our fields of study. In this issue you’ll learn about Landscape Architecture faculty member Dan Marriott’s work toward facilitating community conversations about the future of part of U.S. Route 322. You will also see how music and theatre students are collaborating with the Center for Pollinator Research to create a public presentation of electronic music based on work happening in the center. In addition, we share profiles on alumni Denzel Fields and Elizabeth Guerriero, both of whom credit Penn State for their success in their respective fields of theatre and music, and music education.

The Strategic National Arts Alumni Project, or SNAAP, recently released the first of several national reports using 2022 survey data. You can find the full report here. SNAAP collects data from alumni in the arts, design, and related fields about the quality and satisfaction of their professional and alumni experiences after graduation. As you will see, the College of Arts and Architecture is one of the institutional sponsors and a certain dean emerita is on the board of directors. Thank you to those who responded to the survey. Often, student success is assessed by outcomes such as grades, graduation rate, job placement, and salary. Yet we are also aware student success includes availability of and support for opportunities and the sense of belonging students experience that enable those outcomes to be measured.

If you’re in the State College area or planning to visit soon, I hope you will consider attending an on-campus event. The School of Visual Arts BIPOC student organization has an exhibit in Zoller Gallery through Feb. 8, while Woskob Family Gallery has two exhibitions, “In Vulnerability” and “Under Pressure,” opening this month. The Center for the Performing Arts presents “Johnny Cash – The Official Concert Experience” on Feb. 20, while Penn State Centre Stage presents Urinetown, Feb. 20–March 1. Alumni and friends in the York area should mark their calendars for the annual President’s Concert at The Pullo Center on March 23. There is much more, of course, so please check the college calendar.

Whether on campus for a visit or interacting online as a volunteer, the engagement of alumni and friends is integral to our students’ success. Thanks, as always, for your support.

Script writing that reads B Stephen Carpenter

B Stephen Carpenter II
Michael J. and Aimee Rusinko Kakos Dean in the College of Arts and Architecture
The Pennsylvania State University

Movers Shakers Designers Makers

In the “Movers Shakers Designers Makers” video series, Dean Carpenter takes the opportunity to talk with A&A alumni about professions, practice and Penn State. From gorillas and activism to pedagogy and Peachy Paterno, the topics are timely and free-ranging – laugh, learn and enjoy.

Episode #18: Penn State Art History alum Eleanor Gorski (’91 B.A. Art History)

In the latest “Movers, Shakers, Designers, Makers,” Penn State Art History alum Eleanor Gorski (’91 B.A. Art History), executive director of the Cook County Land Bank Authority (Chicago), discusses how her education in art history, history, and architecture has shaped her career path, including her current work to create more affordable housing and economic opportunity partnerships within Cook County.

Contact Dean Carpenter