Beatriz Asfora Galuban
2021, Ph.D., Art Education
Connections/Reconnections program instructor, Meadows Museum at Southern Methodist University, Dallas
LinkedIn: Beatriz Asfora Galuban
March 3, 2023, article: "Building Community and Connection: Guidelines for Museum Educators Teaching Memory Care Programs" by Beatriz Galuban, who specializes in empathy programming in museums with a research focus on narrative inquiry and storytelling. She is passionate about museums and how to make them more accessible and inclusive spaces for all.
I started my university career wanting to be a curator and researcher of collections and works of art. My research throughout my M.A. in art history led me toward stories and what objects revealed about society and the individuals who possessed them. As a graduate student, I wondered how we, as the audience, could make sense of our own stories by looking at art objects or visiting museums. This question led me toward a pedagogical way of thinking about art, museums, and exhibitions, bringing me to an art education degree. I was visiting Dallas during the summer of 2017 and decided to inquire about the art education Ph.D. program at UNT. The rest is history.
Since graduating, I have been working on many different art education projects, publications, and in different art museums throughout the Dallas area. In the spring of 2022, I worked as a curriculum development specialist for a grant-funded project called the UNT Art People Project. I designed a curriculum for K-12 students featuring contemporary artists and works of art. I worked alongside other teachers, and we piloted the project for a 4th-grade class at a local Denton elementary school. In addition to working as an adjunct instructor for UNT and Texas A & M University, Commerce, Texas, I also started as the instructor at the Meadows Museum in 2022 in their Connections program. My work involves teaching works of art at the museum, managing program registration and sending out our seasonal newsletter. More recently this year, I’ve been invited to join the Museum Education Roundtable board of directors and have accepted an assistant professor of art position at Texas A&M University, Commerce, starting in Fall 2023.
As an educator, I believe art plays a transformative role in the classroom and society. Art is a reflective and expressive tool; it helps us think critically about the world around us. Art challenges and moves us – helping us consider different perspectives and become more empathetic. Contemporary artists play an important role because they use their work to ask questions, helping us as viewers to think about things or issues we may not have considered.
My advice to current CVAD students is to lean into discomfort and take risks with your work, take advantage of opportunities and create community.