Stephen F. Austin State University

News

SFA College of Fine Arts Dean's Awards recognizes students' potential

April 21, 2016 - Robbie Goodrich
Left to Right: Kaylee Jo Bruggeman, Mikayla Stillwell, Allison A. Adams and Taylor Dobbs
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts will recognize four students during the presentation of the annual Dean's Awards at 5:30 p.m. Friday, April 29, at The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

Award recipients include Kaylee Jo Bruggeman, art education major from Katy; Mikayla Stillwell, music education major from Desoto; Allison A. Adams, music education major from Gladewater; and Taylor Dobbs, theatre major from Baytown. Students were selected by the faculty of their respective schools on the basis of their potential to further develop their artistic goals and serve as role models, according to Dr. A.C. "Buddy" Himes, dean of the College of Fine Arts.

The Dean's Awards not only recognize the recipients for what they have already accomplished, but the awards are also designed to inspire them to reach deep from within to aspire to a higher level of excellence, Himes explained. The awards were established by the Dean's Circle, an external support organization of community members founded in 2008 and "dedicated, in part, to nurturing potential young artists within the College of Fine Arts," Himes said.

Bruggeman, who will receive the Ed and Gwen Cole Dean's Award in Art, is working towards her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education. She came to SFA in the 2013 fall semester to explore different mediums with concentrations in sculpture, drawing and education. Over the course of her three years at SFA, she has developed a passion for highlighting the importance of art in children's development. Bruggeman has participated in Art Alliance service initiatives such as art tours for Showcase Saturday, Art Day and Chili Bowl Sales. She has been accepted into the Portraits of Freedom Art Exhibit and has entered other exhibits across Texas. She is a recipient of the Academic Excellence Scholarship and the Regent's Scholarship, and she has been on the President's List all three years of college. Bruggeman participated in the Undergraduate Research Conference in the 2015 fall semester, and she is currently working on a new undergraduate research project involving arts integration in the sciences, specifically biology. She is working collaboratively with multiple professors at the university to conduct her research. She plans to teach in the SFA School of Art's Summer Art Academy.

Stillwell, who will receive the Jack and Naioma Ledbetter Dean's Award in Music, has been a member of the Wind Ensemble, Orchestra of the Pines, Roarin' Buzzsaws Pep Band and the Lumberjack Marching Band. She has played in various opera orchestras, participated in the SFA French Horn Choir, and was a squad leader of the Lumberjack Marching Band Mellophone section. Stillwell has taught French horn lessons at Central High School since her second semester of college, and she was recently given the opportunity to teach lessons at Mount Enterprise High School. Since fall of 2014, she has taught horn for the SFA Music Preparatory Division. Additionally, she is the recipient of a four-year Academic Scholarship as well as a scholarship from the School of Music. These positions and awards have offered her chances to grow as a teacher, and she said she is grateful for each student with whom she's had the pleasure of working. She currently studies horn with Dr. Charles Gavin. She is an active member at Grace Bible Church, volunteering weekly with the children's ministry. Stillwell also served as the orchestral intern in the summer and fall of 2015 at First Baptist Church, Nacogdoches.

Adams, who will receive the Dr. Robert G. Sidnell Memorial Dean's Award in Music Education, has been involved in many ensembles at SFA. She is currently principal of the Wind Ensemble and has been a member of the Orchestra of the Pines, the opera orchestra in its performance of Bedrich Smetana's "The Bartered Bride," the SFA flute choir and flute studio, and the Lumberjack Marching Band. She performs in the flute trio and the Mid-flight Flute Trio, which won the Denise Jennings undergraduate ensemble competition in spring of 2015. Adams has received multiple awards, including the Clara Fresher Nelson Music Scholarship, awarded by the Texas Association of Music Schools, and the J.T. Cox Band scholarship. She is also the 2013 Cole Scholar in the SFA School of Music. While music is her specialty, academic performance is equally important to Adams, who has been on the Dean's List for five semesters and has received the Academic Excellence scholarship for as many semesters. Adams is a student of Dr. Christina Guenther and has also studied under lesson teacher Brooke Zimmerman-Cartwright and directors Fred J. Allen, Dr. David Campo, Dr. Tamey Anglley, Dr. Gene Moon, Dr. Nathan Templeton and Michael Moody.

Dobbs, who will receive the George and Peggy Schmidbauer Dean's Award in Theatre, was stage manager for the School of Theatre's production of "Clybourne Park," assistant stage manager for "The Importance of Being Earnest" and props master for "Macbeth" on the SFA Mainstage. She stage-managed the student-directed productions of "The Valiant" and "Feeding the Moonfish" in the Downstage Theatre. Dobbs stage-managed "To Kill a Mockingbird" in the inaugural SummerStage Festival in 2014 and also served as the assistant props master for that production. Additionally, she stage-managed the Fredonia Players from 2013 to 2015. Dobbs is a paid student assistant for a variety of College of Fine Arts programs, including a member of the crews for the professional concerts and productions that visit W.M. Turner Auditorium, a production assistant for the School of Theatre's student production seasons, and an assistant to the technical director in the workshop where the scenery is built for SFA theatre productions. Dobbs was an alternate to the 2016 SFA Undergraduate Research Conference. She was previously honored with the School of Theatre's Meritorious Service Award and a "Tomy" Award for Theatrical Excellence in recognition of her contributions to the 2014-2015 season.

Each student will be awarded $2,000 to be used to further artistic endeavors.