Michigan State University has launched a new living-learning undergraduate community on campus available to current first-year and incoming students in arts-related majors in the College of Arts & Letters (CAL) or Residential College in the Arts and Humanities (RCAH). Participating students will live together in Snyder-Phillips Halls starting in the Fall Semester 2023 and will have unique access to more than 20 art and creative spaces across campus.
The new Arts Living-Learning Community offers an opportunity for undergraduate students to create socially engaged art through creative collaborations with faculty and artists-in-residences while they build community with other students interested in the arts. As part of MSU’s North Neighborhood, Snyder-Phillips Halls feature an on-site theater for performing arts, art studio, art gallery, and a language and media center with audio, video, and digital art equipment.
“The launch of the Arts Living-Learning Community aligns with the College of Arts & Letters’ approach to the undergraduate experience,” said Cara Cilano, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies in the College of Arts & Letters. “We recognize how our students’ creative and intellectual pursuits occur both inside and outside of the classroom, studio, and theatre. This community provides the spaces and support for students to live their creativity, too.”
The online application for the Arts Living-Learning Community is open to incoming students through May 5. Students are required to be in at least one of the following majors or programs: African American and African Studies (BA), Apparel and Textile Design (BA, BFA), Art Education (BFA), Art History and Visual Culture (BA), English – Creative Writing Program/Track (BA), Film Studies (BA), Graphic Design (BFA), Residential College in the Arts and Humanities (BA), Studio Art (BA, BFA), or Theatre (BA, BFA).
“The new Arts Living-Learning Community builds upon the nearly 16 years of successes—especially in socially engaged arts and community-based humanities—within the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities.”Dylan AT Miner, Dean of the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities
MSU has one of the most robust and comprehensive living-learning programs in the country. Living-learning programs can help foster a sense of belonging for students that connects between in-class and out-of-class environments, as well as academic-focused programming and activities within the residential spaces, all at no additional housing cost.
“The new Arts Living-Learning Community builds upon the nearly 16 years of successes—especially in socially engaged arts and community-based humanities—within the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities,” said Dylan AT Miner, Dean of RCAH. “Students in a number of creative majors in CAL will now be able to live alongside RCAH students and build community together.”
At the center of the student experience in the Arts Living-Learning Community is exploration of the link between co-curricular arts opportunities, belonging, community engagement, and a commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion.
“The Arts Living-Learning Community offers residents an intentionally designed environment in which they will encounter students and artists working in other forms and media. It will be an inter-arts space where students get inspired to stretch their imaginations in their own practices,” Cilano said. “With its focus on the students’ creative pursuits, the Arts Living-Learning Community demonstrates how the arts are ways of knowing and engaging with the questions and issues that animate our communities.”
This new living-learning program is part of MSU’s strategic plan to elevate the arts across campus, including in areas of teaching, learning, research, and creative endeavors. By designing opportunities to bring the arts into active engagement across disciplines, MSU recognizes the potential of co-discovering and co-creating that can drive innovation and open new ways of knowing.
“We are seeing the arts recognized now as part of the core mission of the University, and the Arts Living-Learning Community is launching at the same time as many other arts-related initiatives at MSU,” Miner said. “By establishing this new living-learning community, MSU is showing it fully supports the success of students in creative and arts-related majors.”
“We envision a living-learning experience that brings our most talented undergraduate artists together in a space of care and support where their imagination will blossom, and their creativity will flourish.”Christopher P. Long, Dean of the College of Arts & Letters and the Honors College
The Arts Living-Learning Community aims to inspire the next generation of artists, problem solvers, and big thinkers that will help improve the human condition, address the problems of today, and prepare for the challenges of tomorrow.
“We envision a living-learning experience that brings our most talented undergraduate artists together in a space of care and support where their imagination will blossom, and their creativity will flourish,” said Christopher P. Long, Dean of the College of Arts & Letters and the Honors College. “We can’t wait to welcome the inaugural cohort of artists and makers into this new living-learning community this fall.”
Written by Beth Bonsall