Art Dept. graduates first MFA; Alumni find success

Commerce – The Texas A&M University-Commerce art department recently graduated its first class in the new master's of fine arts (MFA) in studio arts program with a communication arts concentration. The program has grown from zero students in 2007 to a projected 20 in the upcoming 2010 fall semester, and would be one of the largest terminal degree programs on campus and in Texas.

"The master's of fine arts in studio art is one of the oldest terminal degrees on campus, but we only recently started offering a concentration in communication arts at the Universities Center of Dallas," said Joe Daun, A&M-Commerce art department head. "This is a cutting edge program that is nationally competitive and will continue to grow both in national reputation and size."

Along with the current state of the A&M-Commerce art department, many of its alumni are finding success as well. Michael Miller, A&M-Commerce art professor and artist, will have his work on display at the internationally recognized Moody Gallery in Houston from July 10 through Aug. 7. He was also featured in an article about his work in Houston Magazine. Miller's art at the exhibition can be viewed at

Trenton Doyle Hancock, visual artist and A&M-Commerce art alumnus, was also featured in Houston Magazine and recently completed a mural painting, "From a Legend to a Choir," in the Dallas Cowboy's stadium. A photo and review of the design can be found at

A&M-Commerce photography alumnus Jim Fiscus continues to be active professionally shooting for such clients as Oprah Magazine, Atlanta Ballet, Schick, and Showtime's successful photography campaign of the series "Dexter." Fiscus also was featured in Luerzer's Archive's 2010/11 edition as one of its 200 Best Ad Photographers. His work is available at

"The art department at A&M-Commerce has a long history of success," Daun said. "We continue to produce successful alumni from all of our programs who become leaders in their fields. I think Commerce is a special place where our students are exposed to active artists and given the room to be creative and productive. This really sets our program apart from our peers."