Matthew A. Dean
Hometown: Londonderry, NH
"Finding out who I really want to be as an artist has proven to be the most challenging part of this journey..."
Going into my senior year, I earned a spot on the New Student Orientation Staff. This was one of the best jobs. It enhanced a huge sense of leadership and pushed me to develop new things on campus such as the Intramural Water Polo program.
I also led the Unity House Art Gallery reinvention project at the Frederick Douglass Unity House. My work included curating and organizing two show receptions, as well as other smaller opportunities I was able to capitalize on with confidence.
Ultimately the experiences opened doors to other opportunities and to new people, broadening my horizons exponentially.
The toughest thing about being an artist is battling the "you" inside everyday. Finding out who I really want to be as an artist has proven to be the most challenging part of this journey the past four years.
Creating a persona with your imagery can really reveal what it is you take from your inspirations and this thing we call life. Pushing the boundaries of your abilities every day and growing stronger as an artist and as a person are the most rewarding experiences you can have for yourself.
Participate. Surround yourself with the influences that mean the most to you, and listen to others as much or more than you would like them to listen to you. Explore as many possibilities as you can while you're still here; these four years will be the quickest four years of your life. Meet as many different people as you can, open up, and be inviting. Help others—the favor will be returned in a way you wouldn't expect!
My parents have been the most incredible influences on me. You have helped and pushed me to succeed in all aspects of my career path and personal development as an adult.
My professors, who have worked tirelessly to mold the best artist they can—and more—out of me, I thank you. Through years of getting knocked down to get up one step higher, it was all worth it, and I will continue to push myself through the ceiling.
I would like to thank Chris Laib of SAIL for more opportunities than I could ever have dreamed of. And thanks to Arnie for being the greatest Corsair and mascot ever!
And of course, to my amazing friends: thank you for all the amazing memories. Here's to many more!