Dec 1st, 2008 @ 3:54 pm | Author: Dr. Steve Shirley, VCSU President
As we move forward in the Holiday Season, I would like to remind everyone about an important part of the campus environment at Valley City State University: the Fine Arts. Performing arts, music, literary arts, and all other forms of artistic expression seem to take on an expanded role during this time of year. Therefore, there is no better time than now to focus on the range of artistic programs at VCSU, and encourage you to take advantage of these opportunities.

Artistic performances of all variety occur on campus throughout the year. We are so fortunate to have a comprehensive and long-standing tradition of music, art, and theatre at VCSU. We have so many talented students, faculty, and staff in these areas who are constantly reaching new heights and showcasing their talents. I urge you to take advantage of these opportunities and hear and see the wonderful creations they develop. Just in the past few months VCSU has had two different theatrical productions, jazz concerts, art gallery exhibitions, student recitals, and concert and pep band performances. There are numerous band, choral, and other artistic performances scheduled in the weeks and months ahead. The VCSU Art Gallery (3rd Floor McCarthy) is currently featuring a rare handmade Kiowa Print Collection, on display between now and December 31.

VCSU has a rich history in music education. The campus hired its first music professor over 115 years ago, and has been educating music students ever since. VCSU is fully accredited through the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). NASM accreditation is the hallmark by which academic music programs are measured. As the NASM website notes, this accreditation demonstrates the VCSU music program 'has academic strength and operational integrity.' Accreditation from this prestigious body makes a powerful statement about the quality of music programs at VCSU.

Our fine arts professors are also making some creative innovations in delivering courses via the internet and utilizing new technologies. This will expand the academic reach VCSU has in the arts and enable us to serve more students in new locations.

VCSU has alumni throughout the region, state, and nation working in a variety of artistic professions. These alums represent the best of VCSU and fulfill important roles as professional artisans, musicians, entrepreneurs, and teachers. VCSU professors maintain contact with these alumni ensuring our current students are on the cutting-edge with their curriculum and connection to industry. Dedicated VCSU fine arts professors also spend countless hours in presenting for and recruiting to prospective students. This includes field trips to regional high schools to conduct, exhibit, and perform for high school students and their teachers.

An especially important program is the Community School of the Arts. The Community School has operated at VCSU for nearly 15 years and provides quality arts programs to students of all ages in Valley City and throughout the region. The School is a certified member of the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts, and has served to make the arts more visible and integral throughout Eastern and Central North Dakota.

We are truly fortunate to have a University with such a rich and vibrant emphasis on the fine and performing arts. I urge you to take advantage of the opportunities we are surrounded by with our talented students and faculty. The next time there is a play, art exhibit, concert, chorus, recital or any other performance – please show your support by attending the event. I guarantee you will not be disappointed with what you see and hear!