Career Notes: Art Education

A look at a few MICA alumni and their success in art education.

Jessica Davidson ’13, ’14 (Painting BFA, Teaching MAT) teaches at Cedar Park High School in Cedar Park, Texas. Previously, Jessica taught at the Future Leadership Academy on the Hainan Island in China.


Kate Atkinson ’13, ’14 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT) is the elementary art teacher at Thunder Hill Elementary School in Howard County Public Schools. In her first year of teaching, she took on the leadership role in a STEAM day at the school and offered to mentor MAT students in teaching an arts-integrated lesson at the event.

Caroline Creeden ’16, ’17 (Fiber BFA, Teaching MAT) is an art teacher at Mount Hebron High School in Howard County Public Schools in Maryland.

Suzannah Redner ’14, ’17 (Illustration BFA, Teaching MAT) worked as an art teacher at Twinbrook Elementary School in Montgomery County, Maryland.

David Ramos ’14, ’15 (Painting BFA, Teaching MAT) is a K–8 art teacher at a STEAM Community School in Baltimore City.

Taylor Boren ’14, ’15 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT) is an art teacher at Battle Grove Elementary in Baltimore County, where she collaborates with other teachers to infuse STEM with visual arts.

from left: David ramos ’14, ’15 (painting b.f.a, teaching m.a.t.; taylor boren ’14, ’15 (general fine arts b.f.a., Teaching m.a.t.)

Yehee Shin ’15, ’17
(General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT) is a middle school visual arts teacher at Severn School, a private, coeducational college preparatory day school in Severna Park, Maryland.

Allison Yancone ’15 (Teaching MAT) is currently a middle school art teacher at Bohemia Manor Middle School in Cecil County, Maryland.


Niki Moyer ’14 (Teaching MAT) is a visual arts teacher at the project-based charter school Innovations Academy in San Diego, California. 

Jessica Bastidas ’16, ’17 (Illustration MAT, Teaching MAT) was a visual arts teacher for Mount Saint Joseph High School in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Rachel Kotkin ’15 (Teaching MAT) was youth program instructor at Pratt Fine Arts Center in the greater Seattle area, before becoming an art teacher at the Giddens School, and then the Charles Wright Academy in Tacoma, Washington.

artwork by rachel kotkin ’15 (teaching m.a.t.)

Camille Hallin ’16, ’17
(Fiber BFA, Teaching MAT) was a visual arts instructor with the Los Angeles Unified School District, where she brings arts experiences to children in eight public elementary schools.

Diane Yu ’13, ’14 (Painting BFA, Teaching MAT) served as chair of the visual arts department at Garrison Forest School in Owings Mills, Maryland.


Shyla Rao ’96, ’98 (Ceramics BFA, Teaching MAT) is project manager for the Principal Preparation program at Morgan State University. The initiative is designed to create a pipeline of equity-centered school leaders for Baltimore City Public Schools.

Shyla Rao ’96, ’98 (Ceramics B.F.A., Teaching M.A.T.)

Michelle Land ’12, ’13
(General Fine Arts, Teaching MAT) published a paper titled, “Full STEAM Ahead: The Benefits of Integrating the Arts into STEM” and presented her research at the Complex Adaptive Systems Conference in Baltimore. She teached Stratford Landing Elementary School in Alexandria, Virginia, and mentored teachers in the Fairfax County Schools in project-based learning.

Alexandra Arocho ’10, ’11 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT) taught with the Japanese Exchange and Teaching program for two years before returning to the U.S. to teach elementary art in Tampa, Florida.

Jessica Davidson ’13, ’14 (Painting BFA, Teaching MAT) teaches at Cedar Park High School in Cedar Park, Texas. Previously, Jessica taught at the Future Leadership Academy on the Hainan Island in China. 

Kevin Meadows ’02, ’05 (General Fine Arts, Teaching MAT) has taught in Nambia, at the Pan American School in Costa Rica, and at Xiamen International School in Xiamen, China. He has conducted IB workshops in Jakarta and Hong Kong and developed online courses at Bath School of Art & Design in Bath, England.

Megan Carpenter ’06, ’07 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT): After first teaching middle and high school students at the International School of Dakar, Senegal, and at the American School Foundation of Mexico in Monterrey, Mexico, Megan moved to become an upper elementary art teacher at the St. Johnsbury Academy Jeju, an English college preparatory day and boarding school on Jeju Island in the Republic of Korea.


Sherri Fisher ’10 (Teaching MAT) was the 2010 High School Art Teacher of the Year, Baltimore County Public Schools, and was a  2016 NAEA Eastern Region High School Art Education Winner.

The Maryland State Department of Education established the Teachers of Promise Institute to encourage the best and brightest college students in the state to teach locally and provide a transition from student to first-year teacher. Among MICA’s many awardees are India Cox ’14, ’15 (Ceramics/MAT), Allie DeStefano ’14, ’15 (Painting/MAT), David Brown ’12, ’13 (Painting/MAT), Michelle Land ’12, ’13 (General Fine Arts/MAT), Diane Yu ’13, ’14 (Painting/MAT), and Tom Doyle ’13, ’14 (Ceramics/MAT).

Rachel Valsing ’06, ’07 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT), an art teacher at Towson High School in Baltimore County, was the National Art Education Association 2018 Maryland Teacher of the Year.

Rachel Valsing ’06, ’07 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT)


Maria Frati ’12 (Teaching MAT), while creating relief wood-carvings inspired by natural elements, worked as a full-time artist and a part-time teacher at North Carolina State Crafts Center in Raleigh.

artwork by Maria Frati ’12 (Teaching M.A.T.)

Sam Weinberg ’10, ’11
(General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT) was selected to be Young Artist in Residence at the LoBot Gallery in Oakland, California.

Jeremy Jirsa ’14, ’15 (General Fine Arts BFA, Teaching MAT), an adjunct professor at Drexel University in Philadelphia, maintains an active practice, exhibiting in the Mid-Atlantic region as well as Florence, Italy.

To learn more about MICA's alumni, visit Creatives at Work.