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Arts Portfolio Day

Cedar Bluff, VA— On Friday, March 15, 2019, over 220 students from Russell and Tazewell counties gathered at Southwest Virginia Community College for their first Arts Portfolio Day. Students attended workshops in Drawing, Watercolors, Acrylics, Ceramics, Graphic Design, Jewelry Making, Special Effects Makeup and Careers in the Arts. Juniors and Seniors participated in a portfolio review where professors gave advice individually on how students could grow in their art making. “It was very enlightening to see a variety of artists from this area. The Arts Portfolio Day was a great way to get the youth involved in the arts and give them an opportunity to share pieces of their own. Through events like these, the arts are being kept alive in our region,” said Lauren Worley, a senior at Lebanon High School.

Southwest Virginia is a hub of the arts and the College plans to celebrate and support that reputation by establishing a new academic program in art. The Community-Focused Art Program will help prepare students in the theory and practice surrounding the creation of art. In addition, students will also learn about the ways in which the artist helps communities to articulate their own histories and identities and the ways in which an entrepreneurial spirit plays into the life of the artist.  A key part of this program will be identifying ways in which the College can partner with existing community art programs and in which the college can create new opportunities to provide cultural enrichment within its region.

There will be a new cohort-based degree model in Visual Art where students will have an internship, certificate in areas such as art education, business, or graphic design built into their

degree, a portfolio/resume class where students will host a final semester show of their artwork, and a seminar class where they explore local art organizations and art-making techniques. Students will also be involved in study abroad opportunities, work with arts organizations, and outreach to local schools.

High school seniors, there will be $12,000 in scholarships given out for students interesting in being art majors this fall!

For more information on degrees and programming in the arts, contact Morgan Gilbert at

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