Stephen Newbold

Stephen Newbold

"I've been tapped. I am ready!"

College: Fine Arts
Degree Program: Art Education
Degree: Doctorate

Why FSU?
FSU was always my top choice in my pursuit for higher learning. I started at Florida State University (FSU) in 2001 as a student in the Center for Academic Retention and Enhancement (CARE). A soon to be three time alumni of the College of Fines Arts, I initially received the BA degree in Art History (2006) and MS degree in Art Education (2020). Weeks out from defending my doctoral dissertation, I am projected to earn the PhD in Art Education (2024). Since coming back to the university as a graduate student, I've realized that selecting FSU to pursue a terminal graduate degree has prepared me to sit an any room and be declared a rising voice and expert in my field of studies.

Motivation to pursue a graduate degree
After more than a decade of teaching art, history, and arts integration in the K-12 and now collegiate setting, I began to expand my audience as a motivational artist. In February 2018, the Lonnie B. Harris Cultural Center at Oregon State University invited me to facilitate “I am,” a participatory experience designed to explore identity through visual arts. Later that same year, I led an “Identity through Art” workshop hosted by the Office of Multicultural Affairs at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. My function in educational spaces started to evolve, and I believed a graduate degree would provide a theoretical framework that complemented my practical experience as an educator. Completing my master's degree was a pit stop to the ultimate goal of becoming Dr. Newbold. The Graduate School encouraged me to pursue a doctoral degree, and I am forever grateful. That friendly nudge is the reason why I am here.

Importance of research and work
When considering the dismally low percentage of Black men educators (BME) in K-12 classrooms across the country, it is appropriate to interrogate the recruitment and retention of Black male students majoring in education and enrolled in teacher preparation programs. If representation truly mattered, it is essential to discover alternative ways to increase the recruitment and retention pipeline of African American men in K-12 education. Uncovering the contributing factors and decision-making processes that lead Black men educators to pursue and persist through in the education field and their subject area is the focus of my research. My work contributes to the existing and salient literature on BME by expanding the parameters to sharing the lived experiences (that includes resilience and self-care) of Black men artists educators (BMAE). My research and findings are meant to increase representation of traditionally underrepresented groups in, through, and around educational spaces.

Advice for anyone considering graduate school
Have an idea of what you want out of the graduate school experience. I am fortunate to have brought over ten years of work experience in public education into my studies. I have a great sense of who I am and, more importantly, who I am not! Become familiar with university and departmental policy. Ask clarifying questions and believe in yourself (this is your story). Pats on the back are not readily given, but just because you don’t get one does not mean you haven’t earned it.

Accomplishments during graduate career
2020 Art and Education for Social Justice Symposium at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia. 2020-2021; Art Education Student Representative for Department of Art Education 2020-2021; Committee on Multiethnic Concerns (COMC) 50th Anniversary planning committee; 2021 Raising Voice in the Field of Art Education (COMC/NAEA); 2021 Black Lives Matter in DC Schools Symposium Speaker; 2022 Preservice Pecha Kucha Presentation (NAEA); 2022 Art in Crucial Times (ACT) Book Club Facilitator; 2022 3MT Finalist; 2023 Invited and attended the Arts in Embassies Award Ceremony at the White House; 2024 Art Education DC (AEDC) President 2024-2026; 2024 HSF Graduate Student Excellence in Visual Arts Award Finalist. I have received the following fellowships and grants: 2021-2022 NMAAHC Center for Global Slavery Intern; 2021-2022 FSU Career Center Internship Fund; 2022 and 2024 COGS Presentation Grant; 2022 Graduate Student Research award (COMC/NAEA); 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023 College of Fine Arts Student Travel Grants.

Career aspirations
Many have inquired about my "end game”; "what do you plan to do with a PhD, Stephen?" My career aspirations are to continue to educate and inspire through culturally responsive pedagogy. I'm doing it, after is now. My presence and voice provides opportunity to create counter narratives by being in the room. My aspirations include continuing to develop, grow and lead in the National Art Education Association (NAEA) and other academic and creative spaces.