Shook Loose




Last weekend I got to attend the biennial conference of Foundations in Art: Theory and Education (FATE) in Denver, Colorado. FATE is “an educational association dedicated to the promotion of excellence in the development and teaching of college-level foundation courses in both studio and art history.”

By and large, the people I’ve met through FATE (and Integrative Teaching International) conferences have helped me become a better teacher, colleague, and artist. I’m grateful to all the behind-the-scenes people who’ve been churning to pull off this conference. It was great, and I wish them all deep rest and uninterrupted time in the studio.

As is often the case with conferences, some of my favorite interactions happened in third spaces. Hooray for chatting in the interim! It’s comforting to know there are so many great art educators out there teaching, caring for students, and holding it down. Please keep in touch, y’all!

The panel I was on, Overcoming Resistance: Methods for Reducing Students’ Anxiety When Engaging in the Creative Process, was a fascinating mix of educators and approaches. Our audience had many lively questions as well. The topic seems timely. It was energizing to discuss what we might do to accommodate students while not going off the rails ourselves. As I noted in my presentation, there’s a lot of heavy stuff going on right now; it’s no wonder our students are anxious.

In addition to the thrill of the conference proceedings, it was a treat to get to be in a big city without any dependents. I got to walk a lot, visit a museum in silence, and visited with two beloved friends from my grad and undergrad days.

Thanks to the Office of Faculty Development at St Norbert College for funding my trip to the conference. In the interest of transparency for any contingent and/or other interested faculty, the trip, including airfare, hotel, conference registration fee, transit, and meals, cost a little over $1600. All of that will be covered by my institution. Thanks again for that, SNC.

And thank you again FATE for a beautiful conference full of interesting people and hopeful ideas.

Author: Katie

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