School of Visual & Performing Arts 

Daniel Goble, Dean, VPA 104  
Linda D’Aurio, Administrative Assistant (203) 837-3222
  Fax: (203) 837-3223


Terry Wells, Chair, VPA 143, (203) 837-8407

Darby Cardonsky, Graduate Coordinator,  VPA 246, (203) 837-8881

Faculty: D. Cardonsky; M. Portnow; D. Skora; J. Tom; C. Vanaria; T. Wells.

Jamie Begian, Chair, WH126, (203) 837-8637

Kevin Isaacs, Graduate Coordinator & Assoc. Chair, VPA 321, (203) 837-8355

Faculty: M. Astrup; J. Begian; M. Callaghan; C. Ganschow; J. Green; R. Hirshfield; K. Isaacs; L.F. Jimenez; D. O’Grady; D. Smith; K. Walker; T. Wiggins.

Master of Fine Arts in Visual Art & Master of Science in Music Education Degree Programs  

Mission and Objectives

The mission of the School of Visual and Performing Arts at Western Connecticut State University is to advance knowledge, to promote intellectual inquiry, and to cultivate creativity among faculty and students through teaching, research, scholarship, creativity in the arts and public performance. 

The school provides its students with an education of high quality in the visual and performing arts, fosters excellence in creative research and discovery, nurtures ethical decision-making and leadership, and contributes to the cultural enrichment of the state and region. 

Seven objectives support the mission of the school:

  1. To offer the highest quality educational and professional programming in the visual and performing arts;
  2. To prepare postgraduate students for successful careers as practitioners and teachers of the arts;
  3. To utilize fully the regional advantage of our proximity to New York City and other major  artistic centers in the Northeast, including access to outstanding faculty, guest artists and resources;
  4. To recruit the highest quality students in the arts disciplines, with special emphasis on students from Connecticut;
  5. To fulfill the role of the designated School of the Arts of the Connecticut State University System;
  6. To attract major funding for student scholarships, student and faculty programming and endowed faculty chairs;
  7. To enhance the cultural life and image of the university, the state and the region.

Western Connecticut State University is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM).


Applicants for admission to a degree program at the graduate level must submit the following material to the Office of Graduate Studies:

  1. Application for admission to the Division of Graduate Studies with a $50 application fee.
  2. Official transcript, including all earned grades and degrees, mailed (not hand-delivered) to the Office of Graduate Studies from each college or university previously attended. For initial non-matriculated, one-semester enrollment, a transcript indicating a 2.5 or higher undergraduate grade point average (2.8 for music education) and the baccalaureate degree is required.
  3. If an applicant’s cumulative undergraduate grade point average (GPA) is below 2.5 (2.8 for music education) the applicant must present a score rated at the 35th percentile or higher on the Miller Analogies Test.
  4. Supporting documents, such as letters of reference, as required for a particular program.
  5. Evidence of successful completion of prerequisite courses required for a particular program.
  6. Evidence of meeting any special program requirements, such as portfolio review for art or an audition for music education.

For information about special requirements, applicants should consult the sections of this catalog that describe each program. Specific requirements for portfoliio review for admission into the MFA in Visual Art degree program can be found on the web at /art/mfa/

After the above materials have been submitted, the applicant should call the Office of Graduate Studies at (203) 837-8243 to make an appointment for an admission interview.

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