FACE: First-Year Arts Community Experience

From year one, Meadows students are engaging in collaborative concepts, community learning and the Meadows Mindset. In the FACE (First-Year Arts Community Experience) class, artists at Meadows learn to work together and find common ground among different forms of artistry. The class also serves to develop the students’ network and build relationships that can last a lifetime. FACE is Ignite/Arts Dallas Director, Clyde Valentín and other from across the Meadows disciplines. Students also meet local and national professionals and gain real-world insight into what it means to be a working, collaborative artist.

First-year students at universities everywhere spend hour after hour in orientation sessions: how to survive life in a dorm; how to make healthy living choices; how to pick classes and start down an academic path.

Meadows students in art, dance, film, music and theatre also have a semester-long orientation developed specifically for today’s artist, a mandatory Pass/Fail or 1-credit course called MSA 1001/1101: First-Year Arts Community Experience (FACE).

Launched in fall 2010, this orientation class doesn’t spend time explaining how critical it is to spend days and nights in the practice room, in the drawing studio, or in front of the mirror practicing monologues. Instead, students learn the fine art of navigating the art world as a creative entrepreneur and collaborator.

To drive home the concept, the class features guest speakers with real-world experience at promoting ideas, skills and talent. The message to the students is clear: being a skilled artist does not necessarily equate with being a successful artist, regardless of how you measure success.

FACE is also designed to help you better understand the ecosystem of opportunities around you – within the Meadows School of the Arts, the wider SMU campus and the city of Dallas itself. FACE is an introduction to collaboration, learning to work with others beyond your own respective discipline, to bring you closer together as a group of students who will become the future leaders of the Meadows School of the Arts and beyond.