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Donna Sepulveda

Where do you work, and what do you do in your current occupation?

I work for Lanier Technical College as an Art History Professor as well as Brenau University as an On-Site Event Coordinator. I am also called by the Quinlan Visual Arts Center to teach classes on an as needed basis. 

What do you enjoy about your current to occupation? Do you consider yourself successful? In what way?

I have found that my greatest satisfaction is achieved through taking in new students who have little or no real knowledge of the depth and versatility of the art universe, and then hearing them say at the end of the semester they have had an awakening to the multitude of areas in our lives where art has an impact. I never tired of that and it is my hope that some of these students will take that newfound knowledge and use it to enhance their own world as well as for those around them. In the responses that I have received, I have felt confirmation that my efforts are having a positive effect for some, and in that, I feel my work is a success. 

Artwork by Donna

What led you to pursue your current line of work?

While pursuing my Master of Fine Arts degree at Western Carolina University, the art department offered me a teacher of record position where I taught two-dimensional design for four semesters. I experienced great satisfaction and enjoyment through helping others and being in an environment with other individuals who were passionate about their work. Realizing this is a way to truly make a genuine, positive difference in the lives of others encouraged me to continue teaching in higher education as well as pursue a PhD in Higher Education Administration. 

Photo taken with macro lens of a flower

Do the skills and knowledge that you gained as a student in the Department of Visual Arts (DoVA) contribute to your current occupation? If so, in what way?

If so, in what way? During the years I was involved in the Department of Visual Arts program at UNG, the memories that most affected, and for which I continue to be most grateful, were the times I could feel sincere care, support, and encouragement from my professors. I specifically remember the impression made on me by professors who found ways to cause me to stretch my creative ability. In turn, I always hope to clearly provide that same level of care and concern for my students to the degree that they too will look back and know that they were always special and important to me. 

Now that you have a vantage point to reflect on your art education, what would you do differently?

Upon reflection on my time in the DoVA, I know I would now welcome every opportunity, even if I did not feel ready. Each event, exhibition, contest, and critique should be considered opportunities for learning experience and improvement. 

Do you have any words of wisdom for current DoVA students?

Pursue all of your goals and dreams, even if they scare you. Do not fear failure. Failure is part of the process that leads to success. However, be careful not to pursue your goals in a half-hearted manner, otherwise you should not expect, nor would you deserve, maximum success. In everything you do, give everything you have, and the results in the end will be well worth the extra effort.

photograph with multiple exposures taken by Donna

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