By LAURA HUMBLE – STAFF WRITER
This summer, Centre College will play host to the Kentucky Center’s Governor’s School for the Arts (GSA) Program. GSA is an intensive three-week program geared toward promoting various artistic disciplines including architecture, creative writing, dance, drama, instrumental music, musical theatre, new media, visual art, and vocal music for high school students all over the Commonwealth.
For the last 14 years, Transylvania University has hosted GSA annually on its campus. This year marks a significant change as GSA moves to Centre’s campus. “Every three years, the Kentucky Center for the Arts… puts out a public call for applications for institutions to apply to host [GSA]… We had the space and the time, and we were looking as a college for other activities to do,” GSA Liaison and Associate Professor of Dramatic Arts Matthew Hallock said.
This is an exciting acquisition because GSA has such a profound impact on its students’ lives.
“Not every kid when they’re in high school is passionate about academics… or athletics,” Hallock said. “Having a place where that kid can go where they are going to be embraced, where they’re going to be shown that what it is they care about is important and valued… is really important.” GSA offers this kind of emphasis for students who are inclined toward the arts.
To see the impact of this program in action, one has only to look around Centre’s campus for the several GSA alumni.
“The faculty [at GSA] really taught me how to push my limits and be versatile with my art. And just being around all these other people was really inspirational,” senior Sandy Zhang said. Zhang, who attended GSA for visual art, was so inspired by her time at the program, she, through the Art Society, has organized a Silent Art Auction in order to raise money to help fund the program.
“It speaks to the sort of fierce loyalty that GSA alumni have… to initiate something like this on their own” Hallock said.
The Art Society’s Silent Art Auction will be held on Thurs., Dec. 5 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Ewen Room. The art for auction will include donated pieces from both Centre faculty and GSA alumni. For those interesting in donating pieces, please contact junior Jennifer Kim.
Other GSA alumni on Centre’s campus weighed in on their opinion of the program coming to Centre.
“I think it will be good and interesting,” senior Greg Nicaise said. Nicaise studied architecture at GSA. “I think Centre has some work to do to get equipped, like in the music rooms… and multimedia space because we’re not an art-focused school. But I think the campus will work a lot better to build fellowship.”
Hallock, however, feels that Centre’s campus is well-prepared, “Centre is exceedingly well suited as is,” Hallock said. “We are a larger campus than Transylvania… We have larger facilities for the disciplines themselves. We will have to buy a little bit more dance floor and dance mirrors… but that’s really the only thing we have to do.”
Centre College will be hosting an ArtShop on Sat., Nov. 23 from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. An ArtShop is a welcome session for GSA at which students can learn more about what it is like to be a student in the GSA program.
First-year and GSA alumna, Madison Stuart, is getting involved by organizing a GSA Coffee House Day at the Hub that same day.
“It’s for the prospective GSA students and their parents, where GSA alumni perform and talk about their experiences,” Stuart said. Stuart attended GSA for the creative writing discipline.
GSA will be held from June 22 to July 12, 2014.