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K-State Today

November 9, 2015



Harlow named Kansas higher education's art educator of year

By Patrice Scott

Trina Harlow, art education instructor and art education program coordinator, is surrounded by current and former students when she was presented with the award.

Trina Harlow, College of Education art education instructor, was named the 2015 Kansas Art Education Association Higher Education Educator of the Year.

Harlow was presented with the award last month at the association's 2015 fall conference at Pittsburg State University. She was selected for the honor based on her service to the organization, the Texas Art Education Association and the National Art Education Association. Additionally, she was chosen because of her work with globally inspired art, tradigital art, and for her service of excellence in promoting and advocating for art education in Kansas, the United States, and internationally.

"This award is very special to me as it represents my life's work and all the educators, artists, art enthusiasts and students who have been part of my life's canvas," Harlow said. "I firmly believe in the power of art education in the lives of our students."

Harlow taught school short-term in Uganda, Ecuador, and Switzerland and participated in a research project in Cuban fine arts schools. She was a 2014 Fund for Teachers fellow and completed her fellowship in Istanbul, Turkey. She was the Prosper, Texas, ISD District Teacher of the year and founded the Worldwide Color Wheel Project. She was called "a pioneer in video digital media" by Skype in the Classroom, and works continuously to further the scope and reach of art education in the classroom and communities. Her latest project, The Great Teacher Project, uses art education to promote the positive aspects and influences of being an educator.

An avid supporter of the International Folk Art Market in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Harlow is involved in leadership capacities with the Market and works tirelessly to promote the well-being of people around the world in developed and developing countries whose lives are changed by their art making. She started the Aprendiendo del Arte lecture and workshop series at Kansas State University. Her newest interests are refugee art and art in Kansas rural schools. Now in her second year at the College of Education as the art education instructor and program coordinator, she has been a practicing K-12 art educator for more than two decades.

Harlow received a bachelor's degree from Kansas State University and a master's degree in art education from Boston University. Her research interests are globalization, tradigital art, folk and refugee art.