Published October 5, 2020
Although the Dodge City Community College (DC3) visual arts program is focused on preparing traditional students with a foundation in arts education, while also exploring career opportunities in the arts—non-art majors are welcome to take classes as an elective, especially if they are looking for a hands-on course.
“Community members also are encouraged to enroll in our studio art classes as an outlet for creative expression, and many find it a relaxing way to get some ‘me time,’ ” Jennifer Nolan, DC3 associate professor of art, said. “When these two demographics come together it creates a dynamic where everyone learns and grows with the support of their newfound creative community.”
Nolan said that, even in the midst of the continuing pandemic, all of DC3’s studio art classes are being conducted face-to-face. However, a host of new COVID-19 safety measures have been implemented, which include the mandatory wearing of face masks, social distancing and increased cleaning measures.
“All students also have their own art supply kits,” she said. “And communal tools and equipment are sanitized between each user.”
In addition, each classroom is arranged so that students have their own individual work area, which is shared with a maximum of one other student. However, it is never shared at the same time, she said.
“Many people are finding that the closures and isolation have been detrimental to their mental health or their general wellbeing,” Nolan said. “Studies suggest that participating in creative activities does improve our stress levels, moods and can even help combat the effects of aging on the brain. If you ask anyone who participates in creative activities, they will probably tell you, simply put, that it just makes them happy. We could all use a little bit more of that in our lives right now.”
Nolan said she and other faculty members are often asked about the costs of taking DC3 art classes.
“For one semester—that’s 16 weeks—the average cost is $308,” she said.
This amount includes approximately 64 hours of class instruction by instructors who have a combined 30 years of teaching experience, she said. In addition, it also covers all basic supplies and equipment use—and it gives students access to the studios Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
“The college also makes it easy to make payments online using its website,” Nolan said.
In the spring, starting on Jan. 1, 2021, DC3 will be offering ceramics, metalsmithing/jewelry, 3D design, drawing, and acrylic and watercolor painting, Nolan said. And prior art experience is not required, because introductory level courses are designed specifically for those with no prior experience.
“Art classes at DC3 are open to high school juniors and seniors and adults of all ages,” she said. “Anyone who is curious about what we do, and what it would be like to take a class from us, can schedule a visit and come take a tour of our art studios. Come let us show you what you could be a part of!”
Potential students, who are considering DC3 art classes, also may want to check out examples of student and faculty art, which is currently on display in the Little Theatre Gallery, Nolan said.
“The gallery’s function is to provide exhibition space for the art students at DC3, as well as to host other special displays on occasion,” she said. “This particular show is comprised of works from DC3 art students and faculty in all media.”
Nolan said some of the exhibited art was made by faculty as demonstration pieces, and some was made during the spring 2020 semester by students who were not able to exhibit them at that time, due to the COVID-19 campus closure.
“In November we will open the Fall Student Art Exhibition that will feature all the best work that was created this semester,” she said. “It will be on exhibition in the gallery, as well as in an online gallery that will be shared on our Facebook page at facebook.com/DC3VisualArts. Please follow us to keep up to date on all events and happenings, and share our page with others!”
By Lance ZieschDC3 Media Specialist