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Carpenter Named Dean of Penn State's College of Arts and Architecture

by on December 09, 2019 1:02 PM

B. Stephen Carpenter II, professor of art education and African American studies, will serve as the new dean of Penn State’s College of Arts and Architecture beginning Jan. 1, the university announced on Friday.

A Penn State faculty member since 2011, Carpenter has also been interim director of the School of Visual Arts since 2018. He will replace Barbara Korner, who retired in June, as dean of the college.

“I am honored to have been selected as the next dean of the college,” Carpenter said in a release. “Dean Barbara Korner has left an impressive legacy for us to follow and has set the college on a path for success. I am grateful for her leadership and aim to continue her important work.”

Carpenter previously held tenured faculty positions in both art and art education at Texas A&M, VCU, and Old Dominion. He is a founding member of the summer residency M.A.T./M.A. in Art and Design Education at Vermont College of Fine Arts.

He also spent a sabbatical as the Ida Ely Rubin Artist-in-Residence at the MIT Center for Art, Science, and Technology and as an artist and learner-in-residence at Easterly Parkway Elementary in State College from 2017 to 2018. In 2019, he was a faculty mentor for the Penn State Summer Research Opportunities Program.

Carpenter earned his bachelor’s degree in visual art from Slippery Rock University in 1987 and both his master’s and doctoral degrees in art education from Penn State in 1989 and 1996, respectively.

His research focuses on curriculum theory, professional development through art for pre-K-12 educators, public pedagogy and participatory art practices, critical art education studies, and the global water crisis as curriculum. His work aims to confront and disrupt social, historical, cultural, and political constructs.

“Steve Carpenter will be a terrific dean for the College of Arts and Architecture,” Provost Nick Jones said in a release. “His recent service as interim director of our School of Visual Arts and distinguished background in art education teaching and research make him an outstanding choice to lead the college. His vision will sustain and advance our commitment to the arts across the university.”

As dean, Carpenter will oversee the college's academic programs in music, theatre, visual arts, art education, graphic design, art history, architecture, and landscape architecture. The College of Arts and Architecture also includes the Center for the Performing Arts, the Palmer Museum of Art, Penn State Centre Stage and Penn's Woods Music Festival.

“The college is in an exciting position, grounded in disciplinary and programmatic complexity, and ripe with possibilities and innovative ideas," Carpenter said. "Penn State and the College of Arts and Architecture are in a prime position to expand the public understanding of what we do and why this work is socially, culturally and educationally valuable.”

Mackenzie Cullen is a Penn State student and writer for Onward State
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