CFP Now Open for Our 2023 National Conference, “What’s Next? Imagining New Educational Futures for Ourselves, Our Communities, and Our Planet”

Jan 30, 2023

a2ru’s 2023 National Conference, “What’s Next? Imagining New Educational Futures For Ourselves, Our Communities, and Our Planet,” will be hosted by Penn State University’s College of Arts and Architecture on its University Park, PA campus October 19-21, 2023. The call for proposals is now open through March 5, 2023 and can be viewed here.

The theme for this year’s conference is: “What’s Next? Imagining New Educational Futures For Ourselves, Our Communities, and Our Planet.” The study, practice, and centrality of the arts in higher education are inextricably linked to our ever-changing social, cultural, political, and environmental landscape. These changes force us to re-evaluate old mechanisms and ideas to meet the challenges of an uncertain future. How are students, faculty, institutional leaders, and institutions grappling with this uncertainty? How have creative communities addressed regressive responses to social justice, the looming consequences of climate change, and concerns with equitable values as new technologies evolve? How are we managing to maintain healthy bodies and minds for ourselves and for communities both within and outside the educational project-at-large?

a2ru is seeking proposals within four major content tracks: Health & Wellness, Social Justice & Equity, Sustainability and Evolving Technologies. Proposals are also invited for sessions that share current best practices as “Practical Applications of Arts Integration in Higher Education.” Both group and individual submissions are welcomed, and presentations may take one of several formats, including panels, workshops, and storytelling. For the complete call and to submit, please visit the conference page. : https://a2ru.org/event/2023-national-conference-whats-next-imagining-new-educational-futures-for-ourselves-our-communities-and-our-planet/

Stephen Carpenter II, Dean of Penn State’s College of Arts and Architecture, says “I look forward to welcoming participants to University Park for the 11th a2ru national conference. This conference is particularly meaningful since it is exactly 10 years after the inaugural (2013) conference which was also held here at Penn State.”

He continues, “This fall we are eager to look forward into the next decade by exploring and envisioning socially just and equitable futures through the 2023 conference theme – What’s Next? Imagining New Educational Futures for Ourselves, Our Communities, and Our Planet. The theme of this year’s conference brings together the issues of health/wellness, social justice/equity, sustainability, and technology as a space in which to debate pressing concerns, forge connections between participants, reify the immediacy of arts and design to human flourishing, and imagine possible futures to ensure the well-being of our planet.”

a2ru Executive Director Maryrose Flanigan said, “We are grateful for Penn State’s continued leadership promoting arts-integrative practices in higher education, and we look forward to bringing our community to University Park this fall to see all the amazing work happening there. Co-creating a vision for a more just, sustainable, and healthy future for the arts in higher education is vitally important work, and this conference will provide an opportunity for our members to engage deeply in that process.”

Keynote speakers for the conference will be announced later this spring. Registration for the conference will begin this summer.

About Penn State College of Arts and Architecture

The College of Arts and Architecture at Penn State, located on the University Park campus in beautiful central Pennsylvania, is the hub for arts and design education, outreach, and engagement, where new ways of thinking are encouraged and interdisciplinary collaboration is the norm. With academic programs spanning music, theatre, visual arts, graphic design, digital design, art history, architecture, and landscape architecture, they are a complete arts and design community committed to artistic and scholarly creativity, research, and the preparation of creators and educators whose innovation and industriousness make a positive impact around the world.

They offer a broad array of undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as numerous ensembles and clubs open to all students regardless of major. The Center for the Performing Arts, Palmer Museum of Art, Penn State Centre Stage, and Penn’s Woods Music Festival – also part of the college – are key organizations in the area’s thriving cultural landscape, offering performances, exhibitions, and educational outreach programs that are enjoyed by thousands each year. In addition, the college’s research centers and institutes help to foster a vibrant culture of inquiry that promotes excellence within the arts and design disciplines, while at the same time leveraging the potential of a comprehensive research university.

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