Teaching Award


2013 Distinguished Faculty in Teaching

Professor Travis Graves
Department of Art and Design
College of Arts and Sciences

Professor Travis Graves received the award for Distinguished Faculty in Teaching.  Professor Graves, Associate Professor in the Department of Art and Design, joined the ETSU faculty in 2005 and was appointed as the Foundations Coordinator for the introductory level studio art program.  One of his nominators wrote that during that time, "Travis helped to transform the Art Foundations program into an excellent first year experience for art majors and others."

Since his arrival at ETSU, Professor Graves has taught 15 different courses, including studio art and sculpture classes at all levels, ranging from introductory to graduate.  He has been actively involved in student advisement and has been a member of 29 Bachelor of Fine Arts degree committees and nine Master of Fine Arts degree committees.  He presently serves as the department's sculpture area coordinator.

"Effective teaching in studio art is measured in a variety of ways, and one aspect that is often taken for granted is the necessity of constant engagement with the facility, equipment, tools, and materials, as well as a diligent attention to safety," one nominator wrote. "Travis is the consummate professional in managing the studio safely, efficiently, and proactively.  He is constantly improving the facility, on his own time, and this lends to an ever improved (and safer) learning environment for our students."

Professor Graves holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art from Iowa State University and a Master's of Fine Arts in sculpture from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  An ETSU alumnus who currently serves as a faculty member at another university wrote, "Travis also allowed me to observe some of his courses to garner a better understanding of how to motivate my own students to think more critically and to inspire creativity....without Travis's guidance and support I would not be the teacher I am today."  An undergraduate student added, "Travis is always incredibly involved with every project that we undertake as students.  This continually baffles me, due to the complex nature of many sculptural processes and the sheer amount of various processes and techniques that must be performed for an entire classroom of students.  He is a well of creative energy and always makes himself available to all students."  Professor Graves' work has been part of solo and group exhibitions featured in numerous states. As the 2013 Distinguished Faculty in Teaching award winner, he will serve as Mace Bearer for the 2013-14 Commencement Ceremonies at ETSU.




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