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Dean's Welcome





John Fleming


College of Fine Arts & Communication

Texas State University


On Thursday she graduated Magna Cum Laude. On Tuesday she auditioned for agents and casting directors in New York, receiving sixteen offers. The next Monday she was rehearsing for her first Broadway production, the Tony Award-winning revival of Once on This Island… Meet Anna Uzele, Class of 2018 (p. 36). 

He took a wrong train in India. Arriving in an unknown town, he encountered a situation that changed his perspective. Using the skills he learned from his Communication Studies degree, he launched a company that has improved the lives of thousands of women across the world… Meet Kuro Tawil, Class of 2012 (p. 28).

Following his dream and earning a degree in Electronic Media propelled him from McAllen, Texas to New York City where he now serves as a CNN correspondent covering immigration, homeland security, drug cartels, and a wide range of social, political, and human interest stories…Meet Polo Sandoval, Class of 2007 (p. 32).

She also pursued her passion and took the journey from McAllen to San Marcos to New York City. Now she dances for Ballet Nepantla, a company that explores Mexican stories through a fusion of classical ballet, contemporary, and West African dance forms with a traditional Mexican folklorico framework… Meet Francesca Iannelli, Class of 2017 (p. 30). 

Growing up in San Antonio, he did not expect to be recognized as one of the preeminent visual chroniclers of the rich cultural history of the U.S.’s 7th largest city. Now with public art at the San Antonio Airport, the San Pedro Creek Culture Park and exhibitions at the McNay Museum and Ruiz-Healy Art Gallery, that’s what he is… Meet Michael Menchaca, Class of 2011 (p. 26).

When you grow up singing, you dream about doing it all your life, but you know how difficult it is to make a living as an artist. But sometimes you have to take a leap of faith… and now having sung with professional opera companies in San Francisco, Dallas, Philadelphia, Santa Fe, Utah, and Arizona, she knows she made the right choice… Meet Sarah Tucker, Class of 2009 (p. 34).

These six stories are representative of the many student success stories that started here in the College of Fine Arts and Communication at Texas State University. They also embody why we are here as faculty and staff. It is through education, art, communication, and the stories we tell that we transform lives and communities.

As I start my 20th year at Texas State, I have seen the continual, steady rise in excellence. Indeed, our “22 Points of Pride” (p. 4) reflect a team effort and shared purpose that allows us to stand alongside any College of Fine Arts and Communication in the country as they highlight the first-rate faculty, high quality students, and successful alumni that define us. This College Report documents the individual accolades and national rankings that mark Texas State as a preferred destination, a place that provides a quality work environment, top-notch academics, cutting-edge research, and first-rate cultural experiences. 

While we have created a culture where we expect success, our students face significant financial need: nationally, Texas State is the 30th largest school, but receives the 2nd highest amount of federal financial aid, with 37% of undergraduates being Pell Grant recipients. In addition, 48% of undergraduates are the first in their family to attend college. Rather than insurmountable obstacles, these facts are the challenges that our students annually surmount as they carve out their individual success story.

These are exciting times, but to maintain and increase our excellence, we need to expand and elevate our donor base. Join the Friends of Fine Arts and Communication, purchase a seat in the Performing Arts Center, support a student by sponsoring an annual scholarship, have your company sponsor one of our major events, or create an endowed scholarship. These are a few of the ways you can support a winning team and transform the lives of students, who in turn will transform the lives of the next generation.  

John Fleming, Dean

August 1, 2018