New Minor in Visual Arts


Craig Hankin in drawing class critique.After nearly 40 years of giving Johns Hopkins University students an outlet for their creativity, the visual arts program has become a full academic minor.

University leaders expect the designation to give the program, which includes painting, drawing, cartooning, sculpture, and photography, an even higher profile on and off campus.

“The Krieger School is eager to see Johns Hopkins increase its footprint in the practice of art, and hence we are delighted that the Academic Council has approved the minor in visual arts,” says Katherine S. Newman, the James B. Knapp Dean of the Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. “Increasingly, we are seeing our community become a ‘destination’ for filmmakers and drama students, following on the heels of our storied programs in creative writing and poetry and, of course, the legendary program in music at Peabody. Adding the fine arts to this array only strengthens our reputation as a locus of creativity.”

A driver for the change was Rachel Riegelhaupt, a rising junior determined to minor in art. An international studies major from New York who has taken classes in drawing and painting every semester, Riegelhaupt drafted a petition in 2012 and addressed it to university President Ronald J. Daniels and the board of trustees. Riegelhaupt collected several hundred signatures.

“I … ask that you consider implementing a program that would offer formal recognition to the community of students who devote much of their time towards art,” she wrote. “Though visual art is not my intended career path, it is a part of my life that I hold close to my heart.”

Homewood Art Workshops Director Craig Hankin (pictured above) drafted a proposal for the minor, and the Homewood Schools Academic Council approved it this summer, allowing students to minor in art starting immediately. The new minors will be able to focus on traditional studio arts or a digital curriculum centered on digital photography.

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