Meredith Eastburn has joined Watkins College of Art, Design & Film as director of community education, it was announced by Hilrie Brown, vice president of institutional advancement.
In her new position, Eastburn will develop and oversee the department’s diverse non-credit and credit programs including the Adult Community Education, Young Artists, Pre-College and Outreach Programs, which attract approximately 1,000 children, teens and adults annually. Taught by practicing artists, these unique studio-based classes and workshops enable students of all ages to express their artistic abilities and provide them with the tools to pursue a life of creativity.
Eastburn comes to Watkins after working as a teaching artist in Chicago, where she developed curriculum and led programs, camps and workshops in a variety of media for elementary through high school students at the Art Institute of Chicago, Hyde Park Art Center and Marwen. Previously, she was director of communications and programs for the Ragdale Foundation (Lake Forest, Illinois), an artists’ residency program that offers time and space to artists and writers as well as community programming for the public.
“Meredith assumes her role as Director of Community Education with the precise list of qualifications that make her a perfect match for the position at Watkins,” said Hilrie Brown. “She is a gifted teaching artist, a creative thinker and developer of arts education curricula, a talented leader in her field, and is passionately committed to her work. Her breadth and depth of knowledge in the area of community education programs and curriculum development will be of great benefit to Watkins, and we are very pleased she is part of the of the leadership team.”
Eastburn’s experience also includes coordinator of school programs at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, teaching assistant in the education department of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an internship at the Whitney Museum of American Art. She holds a master’s degree in Art Education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a bachelor’s degree in Art Theory and Practice from Northwestern University, from which she graduated magna cum laude and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Additional studies include the Teaching Artist Development Studio, a comprehensive teaching artist training program at Columbia College Chicago, and a graphic design certificate program at the Savannah College of Art and Design.
She may be reached at [email protected] or 615-277-7455.
Eastburn, who will work closely with department coordinator Mary Beth Harding ([email protected], pictured at right), replaces Stefanie Gerber Darr, who has relocated to Colorado.