Dear Friends of CFA,
It has been a wonderful 2014-2015 academic year and the College of Communication and Fine Arts has much to celebrate. Our current students and former students, our faculty and our staff, are all excelling in the key dimensions of evaluation: teaching/learning, scholarship/creative activities, and service along with a consistent commitment to the compelling mission of LMU. We are always grateful for the generosity of benefactors who give so freely of their time, talents and treasures through service, mentorship, and of course the financial support that we most appropriately direct to scholarships to lessen the burden of an LMU quality education and student loan debt.
In this issue of the CFA Newsletter you will see stories that foreground excellence throughout the college. You will read a story about Ian MacAllister-McDonald ’06 graduate, who is making his mark in professional theatre and showing why the LMU Theatre program is ranked as one of the TOP 5 programs in the nation for the quality of educational theatre training and preparing students for career pathways. You will read a story on Ariana Sturr’s, a current photography major in Studio Arts, presentation at the 7th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium on a project inspired by a critical engagement of nature in a time of environmental crisis. Ariana presented alongside nearly 40 CFA majors across all disciplines in both the broader university Undergraduate Research event on Saturday March 21, 2015, and 21 CFA students who participated in the 2nd Annual CFA Arts Showcase — the evening before in which our majors presented their performance-based and artistic expressions then spoke critically about the motivation and meaning in their work.
You will read a brief story introducing you to the CFA “Conversations with…” series in which we stage in a public forum critical conversations with some of our most successful alumni to inform our students in and towards their career pathways. In this sense: Attention successful CFA Alums – if you would like to engage in mentoring our current students through participation in this series, through providing internships, scholarships or class talks please let me know. In this issue you will read two compelling stories on the meaningful continuum of “get-give” and particularly how one alumna, Claudine Cazian Britz ’00, gives back to the college and university, and how one of our student scholarship recipients, Maria Loreto Lopez ‘16, speaks about the impact of receiving a donor based CFA scholarship.
This year the CFA supported one of our senior administrative coordinators in the Art and Art History Department, Nicole Murph, who is also an LMU alum, class of ’04, to participate in an Alternative Spring Break through the Center for Service and Action with students to Guatemala. You should stay tuned for that story in the next issue of the newsletter. But I would be remiss if I did not also celebrate the fact the 2015 LMU undergraduate valedictorian is Genna BloomBecker, a dance and environmental studies double major. Gena represents the excellence throughout the College of Communication and Fine Arts, as well as the best of our students taking full advantage of a CFA/LMU education.
We invite you to enjoy this issue of the newsletter. We also invite you to experience in person the many events and activities in the College of Communication and Fine Arts at LMU. We are currently building our 2015-16 calendar of events, so stay tuned.
Bryant Keith Alexander, Ph.D.