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As we near our upcoming Fall semester, The College of Fine Arts would like to remind you that all faculty, staff and students are expected to use Umail (not personal email accounts) for all university business. 

Beginning Fall 2020, the College will remove all personal email accounts from our listservs and will only use Umail addresses.

So make sure you are ready for a successful fall semester by ensuring that: 

  • Your Umail is set-up and working.
  • Your Umail address is listed appropriately on university webpages.
  • You check your Umail regularly.
  • You are using Umail exclusively for university business, including all communication with students, staff, and faculty. 


Umail FAQ's 


Why can't I use my personal email rather than Umail? 

The University and College expect you to use only Umail for all university business email communications. Not all email systems are compatible with Umail, so using Umail exclusively is the only way we can guarantee secure and consistent delivery of email messages.

I am having trouble using my Umail. Who do I contact?

The University Information Technology (UIT) Help Desk 

Is it okay to set up my Umail to forward to my personal email?

While the university allows this, we strongly advise against it. The process simply does not always work, and messages are often missed or not delivered/forwarded. Forwarding also creates problems when you receive a forwarded email to your personal email account and choose to respond; the response is sent from your personal email account, not your Umail account. So, delivery is not guaranteed, and you are now (perhaps inadvertently) using your personal email account for university business. If you choose to forward, you still need to check your Umail regularly, and please ensure you send and reply from your Umail account only. 

How do I check to make sure my Umail address is appropriately listed on the university website?

There are at least three different places where folks can find your email contact: the Employee Directory, your Faculty Profile, and your departmental website. Here's how to check out what is currently listed for you:

    • Employee Directory 
      • Login to CIS. 
      • Go to the Employee tab. 
      • Select the Change Bio/Demo Info tile.
      • Scroll down to see your currently listed email.
      • If an email other than Umail is listed, please update it with your Umail address.
    • Faculty Profile 
      • Go to https://faculty.utah.edu/index.hml
      • Select "Edit My Profile".
      • You may be prompted for Duo authentification if you are not already logged in. 
      • Your email will be in the upper right corner of your profile. 
      • If an email other than Umail is listed, please update it with your Umail address. (Select the pencil icon to edit.)
    • Departmental Website
      • Check your department's website. If an email other than your Umail is listed, please contact your department admin or Chair/Director to get it changed right away. 

What if I receive emails from someone from the University using their personal email account? 

We are all expected to use Umail. (See the University Email Policy here: https://registrar.utah.edu/handbook/emailpolicy.php.) Please respond to the sender asking them to re-send their email again from their Umail address. If a they are having trouble with Umail, direct them to the UIT Help Desk ( or https://it.utah.edu/help/index.php or or 801-581-4000). 


Published in Finer Points Blog
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During the month of February four College of Fine Arts students, Kristen Bennet (Photography), James Hadley (Printmaking), Christina Jones (Art History) and Laurie Larson (Film & Media Arts), were among six University of Utah students selected to help install a new UMFA acquisition by Conceptual artist Sol LeWitt. Students worked closely with Roland Lusk, draftsperson from the Estate of Sol LeWitt, who coordinated the project.

Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing 33 (1970) installation process is very unique, employing non-museum staff to draw directly on the gallery wall per LeWitt’s instructions—the essence of his works. The students have been working daily throughout February to complete the installation in time for the February 27 talk with Veronica Roberts, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin.

Roberts will share insights into the work of pioneering Conceptual artist Sol LeWitt,  highlighting the installation of a new acquisition of LeWitt’s work, Wall Drawing #33 (1970), at the UMFA. Wall Drawing 33, a pioneering work of Conceptual art, will remain on view for approximately five years in UMFA’s modern and contemporary gallery.

Art & Art History student Christina Jones spoke about her once in a lifetime experience during the past month of install:
“As an Art History major, I've learned about how rare the opportunity is to get to work on one of LeWitt's unique wall drawings, so I was elated when I learned that I had been selected as one of the student drafters for Wall Drawing #33. That excitement stuck with me each time I returned to the museum to draw, but I never expected the physical process to become such a meditative experience for me. When I would tell people that I was drawing precisely measured lines within individual one-inch squares for hours on end, I was met with several questions about whether it got boring or repetitive. But on the contrary, the instructional aspect of the drawing caused me to be calmly aware of the composition of both each individual square and the 10x10' grid as a whole. I'm delighted and honored to had the opportunity to contribute to LeWitt's conceptual legacy, and find it inspiring that this artwork truly exemplifies the creation of an experience.”

Curator Veronica Roberts on Sol LeWitt
WHEN 3/27 at 7P 
WHERE Katherine W. and Ezekiel R. Dumke Jr. Auditorium | UMFA
TICKETS This is a free event 

Published in Finer Points Blog

ArtsForce is designed help you, College of Fine Arts students, learn how to articulate the knowledge and skills you are learning in your degree. Throughout the year, we will be holding a variety of workshops that will help you learn how to start to make the transition now to your chosen career. Our workshops focus on what alumni tell us they wish they knew before they graduated.

By joining ArtsForce, you will be invited to participate in the ArtsForce Canvas Community. On the ArtsForce Canvas Community, we announce opportunities and events and have active discussions about a variety of topics that CFA students might find useful.

Please consider joining ArtsForce this year, if you have not already done so. 

If you need a few reasons, check this out. For more information or to get connected, join ArtsForce.

Our Fall 2018 workshops are:

Expand Your Network: Community Resources for Artists
September 28 | 3:30-5:00 | Union 323
Join ArtsForce in welcoming local arts organizations to present valuable resources to furthering your career in the arts

WIN-ternships: How to Win the Internship Game
November 2 | 3:30-5:00 | Union 323
Join ArtsForce and the Career & Professional Development Center and learn the most up-to- date strategies to secure an internship and start today to launch your career.

Published in Finer Points Blog
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April 25 2017

2017 Outstanding Seniors

As our senior’s head towards the end of their last semester, days away from convocation and the beginning of a new adventure we take a moment to highlight the College of Fine Arts 2017 Outstanding Seniors. We also want to recognize Jack Bender, the ASSU Student Body President, who is graduating with a degree in Film & Media Arts. We’re excited he’ll be attending the College of Fine Arts convocation as a member of the University of Utah Board of Trustees.

CH UnknownCatherine (Cate) Heiner, Department of Theatre, 2017 Convocation Speaker
Cate Heiner grew up in Salt Lake City, and feels been lucky enough to pursue what she loves here at the U. Heiner works as a dramaturg, where she gets to explore the historical background and context of theatrical texts and work with casts and creative teams in creating productions. This allows her to analyze and observe the production in new and innovative ways. She is also a playwright and loves using theatre as an opportunity to open dialogue about current events and differing points of view.

Heiner chose to pursue Theatre Studies because she saw it as a way to connect her love of theatre with her love of history and writing. She believes that in order to have successful productions, it is important to create an understanding for the cast and creative teams in regards to historical context and connection to community. Next fall Heiner will be attending Carnegie Mellon University ato pursue an MA in Literary and Cultural Studies. She hopes to continue working in dramaturgy and playwriting, and hopes to return to Salt Lake since there are so many academic and artistic opportunities here. Heiner’s ultimate goal is to teach on a college level.

“I feel very lucky to have gotten my degree from the University of Utah. I have worked very closely with excellent faculty like Dr. Tim Slover and Dr. Sydney Cheek-O’Donnell, and I have had opportunities to expand my horizons as a playwright and as a dramaturg. I have loved being able to work on a variety of productions with directors and creative teams that bring different tools and skills to their work. I have also loved working for the Chronicle and exploring how the arts relate to journalism and how the arts community can connect with their local audiences. I am constantly amazed by the work my peers are pursuing, and I look forward to collaborating with them as we move toward our artistic careers.”


AB DSC0039Alyssa Bertelsen, School of Dance
Alyssa Bertelsen is 22 years old and graduating with her BFA in ballet with an emphasis in teaching. Some of her favorite things in life are people and challenges, and that is why ballet clicked with her so intensely.

“There is always something to be working towards that feels just beyond my grasp.”

Finding the balance between her drive to achieve and being at peace with herself in the process of growing has shaped her self image during her college years. Bertelsen has found freedom to try, fail, and enjoy the process with the understanding that her value isn’t dependent on what she accomplishes. A huge part of what keeps her dancing is that ballet is a powerful way to connect with people be it through performing, teaching or standing together at barre. Bertelsen is known for giving away hugs and for her passion for quality boba tea and little panaderias.

Two years ago Bertelsen started a ballet outreach (Kids Community Ballet) teaching free ballet lessons in a low income neighborhood and now has forty students attending weekly. After graduation, she hopes to be granted nonprofit status and continue developing a meaningful and sustainable way to make quality ballet lessons accessible to underprivileged children in Salt Lake City. Ultimately, Bertelsen wants to see ballet be a part of healing the brokenness in Salt Lake City. Her goal at KCB is to challenge the status quo such that each student feels seen, known, and loved. She is currently a teacher at Bountiful School of Ballet and intends to continue teaching and broadening her experience as a ballet instructor until she is able to focus in the neighborhoods fulltime. Outside of teaching and working in the community, she would love to be a foster parent, own a border collie, and become a better swing dancer.

“While my classes have been truly excellent, the opportunities that launched me into involvement with the community (both on and off campus) have had the greatest impact on my university experience. I have loved being involved on campus through serving on the leadership team for Intervarsity Christian Fellowship and investing in the School of Dance community. Being in a community of people who I could be authentic with has made all the difference as I’ve undergone the exciting highs and devastating lows we all experience in college. Choosing to devote time to meaningful experiences outside of classes have made the incredible academic enrichment I’ve experienced exponentially more impactful. The mentorship of my professors and IVCF staff paired with close friendships with peers gave me the support I needed to fully realize the path of life I want to walk. I am beyond thankful for all the people who went above and beyond to invest in me as I’ve grown into a stronger leader with a more compassionate heart than I had before. These have been the most transformational years of my life. It is bittersweet to see them coming to an end.”


NL IMG 1451Nicole Lavely, Art and Art History Department
Nicole Lavely grew up in West Point, UT and moved to Salt Lake City, UT to pursue a career in Art Education. She is half Korean; her mother is from Korea and her dad is from Pennsylvania, and is the eldest of four. She is the first in her family to receive a college degree. Lavely is an artist and an educator. In her free time, she enjoys outdoor activities, reading, and being with loved ones. It was during her junior year of high school that she decided she wanted to become an art teacher.

“There was a moment within myself that a light just clicked on about art making, and I wanted to be able to share it with others. I am passionate about art and believe that it has an extremely important role in education. Art has the power to give people voice, and a means to express and think critically about themselves and the world we live in.”

Lavely’s plan after graduation is to begin her new position as a Visual Arts teacher at Taylorsville High School and to work on her practice as a studio artist. She wishes to travel and experience the world so that her practice as an educator and artist can grow. Lavely will continue to work for Bad Dog Arts, a non-profit organization that provides in-school and after-school arts programing for students within the Salt Lake Valley community. In the future, she plans to pursue a Masters of Fine Arts degree in painting and drawing in hopes of becoming a professor at a university level.

“My time at the University of Utah has been an uplifting and positive experience. I have made lifelong friends and have established professional relationships that will help me in my career. The Art & Art History Department has been a supportive community for me to be a part of and has helped me become the person I am today. The Art Teaching program has shaped me to become a strong educator and artist, and has provided me with opportunities that will allow me to find success in the coming years.”


TC UnknownThomas Call, School of Music
Thomas Call is 26 years-old, has been married for nearly four years, and a father of a four-month old. He was born and raised in Bountiful Utah to parents who encouraged participation in the arts. He attended Utah State University for three years with a break for an LDS mission to Philadelphia. Call transferred to the U to study Jazz exclusively, as well as recording and sound engineering, and hit the ground running on his own projects. He has always been a project person, and thinks often about the big picture and purpose of his music. He has a wide variety of musical interests, from punk and ska to modern Jazz to heavy metal, and everything in between. Recently he recorded and produced an album of all original music based on his favorite author’s fantasy novels.

Call became a music major because he had many positive musical experiences in his life, and music has played a large part of who he has become. He continued to pursue music after his mission, wanting to focus on Jazz composition and performance.

“The arts are an essential part of our society and need to be pursued and sustained. Music and art provide people with reminders of why they are alive, what they love and live for, and give them hope and inspiration for who and what they want to be. I became a music major because I want to provide that opportunity and experience for people the world over.”

Call’s future plans include graduate and doctoral degrees, then teaching jazz and composition on the collegiate level. He is considering attending Michigan State University, New York University, and Rutgers University, to pursue a degree in jazz studies. Regardless of where schooling takes him, he has many multi-faceted projects in mind for the future. One such project is a series of albums with accompanying short stories and graphic novels to tell a large story, meant to inspire and give hope to the readers. He also wants to produce a big band concert with modern/contemporary dance as part of the performance, as well as a string quartet plus jazz quartet performance, with an accompanying multimedia, musically responsive presentation, and many other similarly involved projects.

“When I was a young music student, the USU orchestra did a combined concert with the U of U orchestra, to perform Mahler’s Symphony number V. Duringthe combined rehearsals and performance, I saw/heard the quality of musicians atthe U. I decided that I might come to the U for my graduate school. After more life changes, It became apparent that my wife and I needed to move down south, for her to attend culinary school, so I transferred to the U. It has been a very rewarding experience, educationally and creatively. I was able to pursue so many of my own projects, as well as receive the education I needed to make my creative dreams into realities. I was able to get a work study position, working as an assistant for the Music Tech department, and I’ve learned so much about capturing sound, as well as producing albums and recordings. So much of what I have learned here, as well as all the wonderful relationships and connections, will be very helpful in my chosen career path, and all of my creative endeavors in the future. I’m so glad I made the decision to come to the U!”


JH 4Jordan Hanzon, Film and Media Arts Department
Jordan Hanzon is an editor, an appreciator of all aspects of film, but at the end of the day, will always choose sitting in front of a computer for a few to ten hours putting together effects and stories. Some of his favorite classes were Connie Wilkerson’s Final Cut Pro class, Sonia and Miriam Sobrino’s After Effects, and Brian Patrick’s Avid course. During is junior year he made a video which was a re-cut of Disney’s “Inside Out” without the emotions which ended up going viral overnight reaching over three million views and being featured on sites like Buzzfeed, Time, USA Today, and more. Currently he is working for the J. Willard Marriott Library in PR & Marketing where he makes videos, manages social media, and more. Originally, he had wanted to be a dentist, seeming like the perfect career until he realized how much it involved being in people’s mouths. Film had always been a passion of his since middle school when he made a video to run for Student Body Officer. Although he lost, he learned how much he loved making videos. He enjoys the process of editing and putting together a story from a bunch of clips and sounds.

“It’s lovely seeing what stories can be told especially from those in minority communities who don’t feel like they have a voice (including my own as both a member of the LGBT community and being part Indian).“

Hanzon plans to continue his education in film and communications and continue telling stories through video. He and his fiancé have also started an organization, Friends of Earth, where every Saturday they go to a different park with friends and pick up trash around the park. He plans to continue making efforts to help environmental efforts in order to make our earth a little bit cleaner.

“I have loved my experience at the University of Utah. It seems like a safe haven for diversity that thrives on people who think differently. I’ve felt that all of my professors have encouraged me to try something different with every film I make and to not be afraid of making mistakes. The University has also helped provide me with the means through many scholarships that have helped me finish my college education, without which, I don’t think I would have been able to attend.”


Published in Finer Points Blog

By Emerging Leaders Ambassador and Guest Writer, Rachel Luebbert

Student leadership opportunities in the College of Fine Arts (CFA) are the veins that pump new ideas and collaboration among the different disciplines. The College offers countless leadership positions each year which provide students a way to build vital skills toward their professional careers.

Lien Fan Shen, Associate Professor in Film and Media Arts recommends that students take advantage of the countless opportunities outside of the classroom, “It takes more than simply course work to be an active student.” Shen recommends supplementing your class load with different experiences at the University from leadership roles to fellowships to research opportunities to even volunteer experiences.

The Emerging Leaders Interns who create programing to better your arts education, hosted the Business of Arts Symposium and Annual Networking Luncheon on March 4th with a seminar from the Personal Money Management Center on the importance of early budgeting. This was followed by a lecture from Aaron Garret of Non-Profit Legal Services of Utah who shared important recommendations for artists such as the necessity to involve a written contract in all freelance jobs. Also, a representative from Lassonde spoke about the role of artists are entrepreneurs. These informative seminars were followed by a networking luncheon where students had the opportunity to speak with various arts organizations in the community.

The Ambassadors are also interns within the College and help with freshman orientation, administrative tasks, and guest writing for the Finer Points blog. This is an exciting position to have your perspective shared through writing about the endless events and collaborations occurring in the CFA. The Ambassadors not only interview students, faculty, and guest artists on campus but also have the chance to establish their own creative voice through their blog posts.

Another leadership opportunity in the College is the Emerging Leaders Council (ELC)—an annually established cohort of first year and continuing second year students that are involved in collective leadership and collaboration. On March 8th, seven of the most involved members were invited to the ELC Dinner which provided students the opportunity to network with faculty, professors, and advisors within the College. Amelie Bennett (Ballet major), acknowledged that her involvement in the ELC has allowed her to become a part of a supportive artistic community in just her first months at the university.

The ELC is currently working to create a collaborative film that represents every academic unit in the CFA. Bennett for example is creating the choreography. While, William Liu (EAE Major), is producing the film. Liu explained, “Being involved in the ELC has helped me to understand my leadership skills.” For Liu, the ELC workshops help develop connections and leadership potential. Don’t miss your chance to engage outside of the classroom and involve yourself in the exciting CFA leadership positions.

Apply Today!

Published in Finer Points Blog