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Student Success

Art student pursues her dream job with unique education opportunities

Senior Katrina Shafor is one of the first students at Miami University Regionals to take part in the Community Arts bachelor’s degree program while pursuing a double major in Art Education at the Oxford campus.

Katrina Shafor
Katrina Shafor
Student Success

Art student pursues her dream job with unique education opportunities

#Katrina Shafor()

Senior Katrina Shafor is one of the first students at Miami University Regionals to take part in the Community Arts bachelor’s degree program while pursuing a double major in Art Education at the Oxford campus. She has made a name for herself bridging two campuses and charting her own course in the arts.

Shafor’s journey to graduation has included many memorable moments in the art departments of both campuses, culminating in a capstone project that highlighted the works of regional female-identifying artists in a special exhibit titled “Empowered – What if Women Ruled the World.” She also won a $1,000 Ohio Arts Education Association scholarship for pre-service educators.

Jennifer Purdum, assistant teaching professor of Art at the Regionals and one of Shafor’s advisors, said Shafor is a natural leader who explored many opportunities within the Art program to reach her goal of working in museum education. Her double major in Art Education will play an important part in reaching her ambitions.

“She saw an opportunity for herself in Art Education and Community Arts that opened up doors for her,” Purdum said. “The Community Arts degree is designed to be easily combined with other degree programs to customize each student’s experience. Katrina has been a great fit with both of her choices.”

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Community Arts was created in 2016 to allow students in the arts to complete their four-year education at Miami University Regionals. Before it was launched, students who wanted a four-year arts degree were required to finish their education at the Oxford campus or elsewhere.

Shafor said she decided to add a double major in Art Education because she knew it would make her more marketable as an artist and educator. “Museum work will combine both of my degrees. I will have the knowledge to run programs and events, give tours, and manage outreach to local schools,” she said. “Everything I’ve been working on has prepared me for this.”

In addition to her classes at both the Regionals and Oxford campuses, Shafor had to include studio time to work on her art, which was only offered at Oxford. Managing her schedule wasn’t easy, but her advisors helped her work through it. They also helped her keep her costs down, which was a concern as she started taking classes at Oxford.

While maintaining her core coursework, she also took advantage of valuable opportunities to get involved and pursue leadership roles. She was a marketing intern for The Fitton Center for Creative Arts in Hamilton as well as an assistant preparator intern for the Miami University Art Museum at Oxford. She also taught a high school art class through the Saturday art program and was co-president of the student chapter of the National Art Education Association and a presenter at the Fall Conference of the Ohio Art Education Association. She will complete her student teaching placements for her Art Education major during the spring semester.

Stephanie Danker, associate professor of Art Education at Oxford, said Shafor’s journey is an example of how much students can accomplish when they jump in with both feet.

“Katrina is taking full advantage of every opportunity she’s been given,” Danker said. “She is prepared for many future career choices, whether it’s K-12 teaching, museum education, or teaching at the college level. Her work has been exceptional.”

Shafor said she is grateful she’s been able to complete the college education that will launch her toward her dream career. She said teachers at both Miami campuses have been instrumental in helping her achieve her goals.

“They have helped me believe in myself and my potential,” she said. “That meant a lot.”