School of Visual Arts becomes College of Visual Arts and Design

Thursday, August 9, 2007

DENTON (UNT), Texas -- The University of North Texas School of Visual Arts has become the UNT College of Visual Arts and Design, reflecting the growth of the college and its prominence as one of the largest and most comprehensive visual arts programs in the nation.

The name change, which became effective in August, recognizes the diversity of the college's offerings and its role in the professional and cultural communities across the state and the nation.

 "All of the members of the College of Visual Arts and Design are honored by this new recognition and excited about the many projects underway to further raise the stature and prominence of our creative and scholarly projects," said Dr. Robert Milnes, dean of the UNT College of Visual Arts and Design. "We are delighted about the ways in which this new designation can help us provide even more wonderful opportunities for our students and the communities we serve."

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, which approved the name change this summer, also approved the reinstatement of the bachelor of arts in art degree as a bachelor of arts in interdisciplinary art and design studies.

More than 2,300 students are enrolled in the college, which offers 13 undergraduate and graduate degree programs that lead to B.A., B.F.A., M.A., M.F.A. and Ph.D. degrees and a graduate certificate in art museum education. The college has 10 M.F.A. programs in the studio arts and design arts, two M.A. programs -- one in art history and one in art education -- and one doctoral program in art education.

Art classes began at North Texas in 1894, four years after the founding of the institution. Master's degrees were initiated in the 1930s, and the first master of science degree in art was awarded in 1937. 

After World War II, professional programs in advertising art, fashion design and interior design supplemented traditional studio and art education programs. Following an extensive study of the arts in Texas by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in the 1960s, North Texas was designated as a major visual arts program in the state and was approved to offer the B.F.A, M.F.A., and Ph.D. degrees beginning in 1971.

In 1992, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board reclassified the Department of Art in the College of Arts and Sciences as the School of Visual Arts. The change to a school came with the assistance of such longtime supporters as Advisory Board Chair Raymond Nasher.

The College of Visual Arts and Design includes internationally recognized programs such as the North Texas Institute for Educators on the Visual Arts, the Print Research Institute of North Texas (P.R.I.N.T. Press), the Texas Fashion Collection, the Visual Resources Collection and an extensive visiting artist/scholar program.

The College of Visual Arts and Design operates programs and exhibition facilities at three UNT campuses, including the main campus in Denton, the UNT artspace FW at the UNT Health Science Center in Fort Worth, and Fashion on Main at Universities Center at Dallas.

UNT News Service Phone Number: (940) 565-2108