Monday, September 15, 2008

Dear Tyler Students:

A warm welcome to the new students and welcome back to all those returning students toTyler School of Art. Many of you are already riding the special Tyler bus that was designed by Rachel Ignotofsky during her freshman year at Tyler. This will be a most unique year in Tyler’s history as the Elkins Park arts community will be moving in January to our new facility on the main campus. The building progresses more each day and with it excitement increases to put out the welcome mat and finally have Tyler School of Art located on one campus with the other schools. Last spring Tyler was ranked fourteenth out of more than a hundred art schools by the US News and World Report. Five of our graduate studio programs are ranked in the top twenty in the nation. We know that the talents you bring to Tyler will further increase our rankings in the future as Tyler becomes even more competitive. Our application numbers soared last year and our denial rate was over eighty percent! We have the best and brightest entering class at Tyler and they join their exceptionally gifted upper class students to carry on the tradition of excellence in the fields of studio art, art history, art education and architecture at Tyler School of Art. We have waiting lists for this fall and spring and many who want to transfer to Tyler in order to reap the benefit of a Tyler education. We are pleased to be so coveted by others but want to assure you that we are not looking to increase enrollments, especially in the studio areas. One of the benefits of a Tyler education is the individual attention to students and access to our talented faculty. The move to the main campus facility will only enhance this aspect with the newest state-of-the-art equipment. Plans are also underway to upgrade existing main campus facilities in Architecture and build art history classrooms and studios in the new building for main campus programs.

The year 2009 marks two great milestones in Temple’s history. It is the 125th anniversary of the founding of Temple University and the 75th anniversary of the establishment of Tyler. We are in the midst of planning special events and exhibitions to celebrate these occasions. A ribbon cutting is planned for March 25, 2009 to officially launch the school. Boris Blai, the first head of Tyler School of Art, would be delighted at the move and expanded facilities of the art programs at Tyler as they make possible collaborative learning opportunities that were at the core of his vision for the school. Professor Jo-Anna Moore, who is on leave this year, and is writing a history of the first thirty years of Tyler, informs us that “Blai hired a few faculty in Tyler’s early years, distinctive artists and scholars: Furman Finck, an academy trained painter and a leader in Progressive Education, a dancer, Charles Weidman, and Leo Ornstein, a musician. Blai’s curricular vision was to include a multi-disciplinary education for the artist, with a heavy emphasis on the craft of materials, and to educate artists to become artist-teachers.” The new building at Tyler will share an atrium with the prestigious Boyer College of Music and be next door to the School of Communication and Theater. Projects with the Fox School of Business, the College of Education and the College of Science and Engineering are being explored and the relocation of the school promises many more exciting interdisciplinary ventures.

I wish you all a productive year filled with artistic and intellectual stimulation. You will be challenged to develop your capacity for creative thinking, expand your talents in new directions, and grow your abilities to be the artistic, art historical, art educational and architectural leaders of the future. Good luck to each and every one of you, and let us know how we can make your Tyler experience the best that it can be.

Therese Dolan
Interim Dean
Tyler School of Art

They forgot to add contact information in order for us to actually share with them "how they can make our Tyler experience the best that it can be", but im sure they meant to. And the whole "productive year" wish, well I think we all wish that. Are we going to get it is the big question. Its all very interesting.

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