Posting Date: July 2, 2012




Kennesaw State announces School of Art and Design

Department of Visual Arts becomes the School of Art and Design


For media inquiries: Cheryl Anderson Brown, Director of Public Relations,
770-499-3417 or


Visual Arts Building

KENNESAW, Ga.—Kennesaw State University announces the establishment of the School of Art and Design, formerly the Department of Visual Arts. Joe Thomas, formerly chair of the Department of Visual Arts, will be the director of the new school.

The change from department to school reflects the growth that the art department has seen in recent years. Between 2004 and 2009 the number of art majors increased by 70 percent, well above the university’s average student population increase of 25 percent. “The size and complexity of the department has increased to a point that they exceed the boundaries of a typical department,” Thomas explains. “The School of Art and Design makes up more than half of the student population in the College of the Arts. Our new designation as a school demonstrates the scale and professionalism of our programs.”


In addition to allowing room for continued growth, the new name also better describes the school’s purpose. “The School of Art and Design more clearly encompasses what we do, as design is a major part of the curriculum,” explains Thomas.


The School of Art and Design offers four separate degrees: the Bachelor of Fine Arts in art, which includes six areas of concentration; the Bachelor of Arts in art history; the Bachelor of Science in art education and the Master of Arts in Teaching Art (MAT). Most of the degrees offered by the School of Art and Design are specialized pre-professional programs typical of those taught in the context of a school of art. “Our new name makes it clear that we are on par with our peer institutions,” says Thomas.


The School of Art and Design’s name change has been several years in the making and the faculty and staff are excited for the new opportunities that the school will have. “All of us in the school," Thomas says, "appreciate the support of College of the Arts Dean Joseph Meeks, Provost Ken Harmon and President Daniel Papp for making this change possible."


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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering 80 graduate and undergraduate degrees, including doctorates in education, business and nursing, and a Ph.D. in international conflict management. A member of the 35-unit University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive, residential institution with a growing population of more than student population of 24,100 from 130 countries.


The KSU College of the Arts is one of only four Georgia institutions to have achieved full national accreditation for all of its arts departments.


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The College of the Arts at Kennesaw State University supports, defends and promotes academic freedom in artistic expression, as outlined by the American Association of University Professors, and diversity of all kinds as outlined by the university's Human Relations Position Statement.

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