In the first e-conversation of 2009-2010, I wrote that "the modern world increasingly requires the qualities of intellect and spirit associated with the arts and humanities: the creative thinking that leads to innovation; the cosmopolitan capacity for understanding and communication across cultural divides; the courage and depth to consider the philosophic and ethical dimensions of our actions...I am pleased to report that we begin the fall semester with positive developments in all three of these vital educational areas."
What a year it has been! I am able to report that we conclude the year with even more positive news in each of the areas that I mentioned in the fall - and we look forward to next year with even greater optimism that is supported by a wealth of evidence. Here is some proof:
• Our enrollments continued to grow
• Our research, especially in the Arts & Technology initiative represented by our degree programs in ATEC (Arts & Technology) and EMAC (Emerging Media and Communication), continued to attract external support
• The programs sponsored by the Center for Values in Medicine, Science and Technology succeeded beyond our most hopeful predictions, attracting capacity (and often more than capacity) attendance for every event
• Our Confucius Institute sponsored, in collaboration with the Crow Collection of Asian Art, a fascinating symposium on the role of jade in Chinese culture
• Our long and fruitful partnership with the Dallas Museum of Art produced the innovative, and exciting, exhibit "Coastlines" at the DMA that adds a "soundscape" to the works of visual art
• Generous supporters gave major gifts - or, as I prefer to think of them, investments - creating an endowed chair in ATEC, a professorship in Guitar Studies, an endowment for arts programming at CentralTrak, and support for research in art hisotry.
Next year promises to be even more exhilarating; and I expect to begin the first e-conversation of the fall with more good news. Meanwhile, look for announcements regarding the 2010-2011 season of public events. Have a wonderful summer. And don't forget that we need your support to continue to provide education, ideas, art and excitement to the students, the University and the greater community.
Dennis Kratz, Dean
School of Arts and Humanities