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Art Education, BA

The art education major prepares students for a successful career in art teaching. Designed to create exemplary artists and educators, the innovative curriculum includes an exciting range of art education, art studio, and art history courses.

Field experiences in the sophomore, junior, and senior years offer students unique opportunities to work and teach in actual K-12 New Jersey art classrooms and with local non-profit arts organizations. The program culminates with a full semester of student teaching at both the elementary and secondary level, with an option to student teach abroad.

With a reputation for excellence, TCNJ’s art education graduates are represented in school districts and arts organizations across the region. Upon completing the Bachelor of Arts degree, students qualify for the New Jersey State Art Teacher Certification, kindergarten through twelfth grade.

Art Education Major Requirements

Current AAE Students

Coordinator: Dr. Lisa LaJevic

Student and Alumni News and Recognitions

The department would like to congratulate:


two women standing with large artwork


Julianna Dimeola (’21) and Julia Pfaar (’22) for their exceptional work on MUSE this summer! Under the mentorship of Dr. Carolina Blatt and Professor Anita Allyn, Julia and Julianna ran a week-long photo workshop for local high school students who lost access to studio resources and instruction due to the pandemic. The resulting images are on display in the windows of the first and second floors of AIMM during fall semester 2021 and on temporary exhibition (September 8 – 27, 2021) in AIMM 119. Learn more about their work and the AMPLIFY project here.


Alyssa Schoenfelt (Art Education Major, 2021) and Megan Scarborough (Art Education Major, 2021) for being awarded the 2020 College Scholarship through the Art Educators of New Jersey (AENJ)! AENJ is the state’s professional association for visual arts educators and this award recognizes students who exemplify the qualities of outstanding scholarship, service, and visual ability. Keep up the great work!

two headshots of young women

Skyler Bancroft, Gina Bianco, Juliana Dimeola, Olivia Egnatovich, Julia Pfaar, Nikolette Sciancalepore, and Liz Stahl for presenting at the 2020 Art Educators of New Jersey (AENJ) Virtual Conference! We are TCNJ proud!art in focus and aenj logos

Skyler Bancroft, Julia Pfaar, and Nikolette Sciancalepore for co-presenting with Professor LaJevic at the 2020 Art Educators of New Jersey (AENJ) Virtual Conference! The session was titled “Participatory Art: Exploring Lessons Inspired by Contemporary Artists.” Way to go!conference poster

Morgan Gualtieri (Washington Elementary School, Edison), Taylor Hughes (Eastern Regional High School), Keith Kozak (Timber Creek High School, Sicklerville), Emily Pustay (Nottingham High School, Hamilton), and Gabe Randazzo (West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional High School) for serving as guest speakers for the AAE 370 Art Materials and Processes course. They are all TCNJ graduates and art teachers in NJ. Thank you for sharing your wonderful art lesson ideas!

group photo in classroom

Ron Heller (Art Supervisor in the Hopewell Valley Regional School District), Patrick Lenihan (Art Supervisor in the Princeton Public Schools), and Jeffrey Santoro (Art Supervisor in the West Windsor-Plainsboro School District) for serving as guest speakers for our senior practicum! They shared great advice for securing a K-12 art teaching job! Thank you!

thank you!

Five art education majors have been accepted to the global student teaching program so we will have student teachers placed around the world this fall! Congratulations Melanie Capalbo, Kelly Marrone, Claire McNally, Estefany Rodriguez, and Madeline Wyville! Bon Voyage!

two women posing with large portraitEstefany Rodriguez and Shayla Nolan, who co-presented a project “Inside Out: Fabric of Trenton” with Dr. Carolina Blatt-Gross at the Art Educators of New Jersey annual conference in Long Branch, NJ. Their presentation detailed two large-scale community-based art projects they recently completed in Trenton and the benefits of Community Based Art Education.

the value of art event posterAfter completing her student teaching at Rivera Community Middle School, in Trenton, NJ, graduating senior Angela Rossi curated an exhibition titled “The Value of Art” featuring her students’ work.

The March 2018 reception was attended by Angela’s cooperating teacher and principal as well as many of the student artists represented in the show and their families!


TCNJ was well represented at this year’s AENJ conference, our state professional organization! Presenters included current student, Archana Kamani, who shared an original lesson plan, and recent graduate, Abigail Saiia, who shared tips on transitioning to a new position.

In Fall 2015, Taylor Hughes spent half the semester student-teaching abroad in Italy! What a wonderful experience!

Spraying a friend with a water hoseAmanda Intili and Matthew Pembleton for their 2015 publication titled, “Defying Reality: Performing Re-Imagined Worlds.” The article, co written with Dr. LaJevic, was published in Art Education, the official journal of NAEA. The article explores an engaging lesson inspired by Robin Rhode, a South African contemporary performance artist, that asks students to perform and document intra-actions with static chalk drawn re-imagined worlds. The paper was co-written during MUSE. Matt graduated in December 2013 and Amanda plans to graduate in 2016.

Scott Samuels for his 2015 solo show of upcycled works at The Gallery at Don’t Toss It in Lambertville, NJ!

Amanda Intili for her proposal acceptance to the 2015 National Art Education Association (NAEA) Convention in New Orleans, LA. The paper titled, “Pre-Service Teaching and Art Workshops for Underserved Populations” was co-written with Professor LaJevic during MUSE 2014.

Katelyn Liepins for her 2014 solo art show at TCNJ!

person planking (laying flat and rigid across surfaces)

Matthew Pembleton for his 2014 publication titled “Living Sculptures: Performance Art in the Classroom.” The article, co written with Dr. LaJevic, was published in Art Education, the official journal of NAEA. It examines performance art, the artist Erwin Wurm, and the role the body plays in art education. The paper was co-written during MUSE. Matt graduated in December 2013 and is currently teaching in the Princeton Public Schools

group sitting in chairs from behind

Jenn Cartagena, Colleen Duffy, Alyssa Gargiulo, Amanda Intili, Keith Kozak, Susan Mitrano, Matthew Pembleton, and Jessica Sassaman,. These are a few of the students (and recent alumni) who will be presenting at the 2014 Art Educators of New Jersey (AENJ) Conference in Long Branch! Good luck!

2014 art alumni exhibition logo

All the AAE Alumni who are showcased in TCNJ’s 2014 Juried Alumni Art Exhibition! Way to go teaching- artists!


All the AAE students who graduated in 2013-2014! We are so very proud of you! We also want to recognize a few alumni that recently accepted jobs as K-12 art teachers! Samantha Berk is teaching in Cranford, Andrew Dean is teaching in Maplewood, Johann Derflinger accepted a position in Somerville, Allie Guarini accepted a job in Burlington City, Ashley Garguilo is teaching art in the Richmond County Schools, NC, and Jessica Sassaman accepted a position in the Falmouth Public Schools, MA.

two people spray painting TCNJ on wall

Gabriel Randazzo for his 2013 publication titled “Cleaning Our World Through Reverse Graffiti.” The article, co-written with Dr. LaJevic, was published in Art Education. It examines ecological art and the artist Moose, and presents pedagogical possibilities for incorporating reverse pollution into the art curriculum. The paper was co- written during MUSE and presented at the 2013 NAEA Conference in Ft. Worth, TX. Gabe graduated in May 2014 and is currently teaching in the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District. For more information about the project, please click here:

group of three posing

Kelsey Long for receiving NAEA’s 2013 Higher Education Student Achievement Award. Kelsey was chosen as the national recipient for this prestigious award that was bestowed to only one art pre-service teacher in the nation. While student-teaching in Spain, she designed a cultural art exchange lesson with an art teacher at Trenton Central High School. Kelsey (2012) is currently teaching art at Academic Charter School in Jersey City.

conference presentation

Jessica Sassaman, Alyssa Gargiulo, Jennifer Cartagena, Ashley Garguilo, Samantha Berk, Alexandra Wesson, Johann Derflinger, Colleen Duffy and Emily Pustay. These students presented at the 2013 AENJ Conference in New Brunswick: Way to go, and keep up the great work!

girl posing in group

Ashley Garguilo! Ashley was awarded the 2013 AENJ College Student Scholarship.

the art of teaching event poster

Kappa Pi Honor Society members for their exhibition opening “The Art of Teaching” at Grounds for Sculpture. The exhibit runs through November 3rd, 2013. The artists in this exhibition seek to find the connection between the work they do as both artists and educators. In addition to the twenty K-12 art students highlighted in the show from New Jersey and abroad, the four participating artists are TCNJ Art Education alumni and include: Kelsey Long, Matthew Pembleton, Anne Ruffner, and Danielle Sarnowski.

man wearing tie at table holding pen

Bryan Borut and Samantha Parlow for having been awarded a 2012 College Student Scholarship through Art Educators of New Jersey’s (AENJ). We are proud of your accomplishments and dedication to the arts and education!


two people observing gallery exhibition

Matthew Pembleton and Kelsey Long for co-presenting with Professor LaJevic at the 2012 National Art Education Association (NAEA) Conference in New York City. The session titled, Exploring Contemporary Artists: Lesson Ideas for the Art Classroom, attracted many conference attendees and was a great success!


person viewing art installation

All the K-12 students and art teachers who participated in TCNJ’s 2013 Art, Innovation, and Ideas,a statewide, juried K-12 student art exhibition!



Where are they now?

  • Krista Carpino (2015) teaches art at Northern Highlands Regional School District.
  • Erin Chamberlin (2015) teaches art in South Brunswick School District.
  • Caitlin Gold (2015) is an art teacher in the Princeton Public Schools.
  • Scott Samuels (2015) teaches art in Hillsborough.
  • Samantha Berk (2014) is teaching middle school art in Cranford, NJ.
  • Andrew Dean (2014) is an art teacher at Tuscan Elementary School in Maplewood NJ.
  • Johann Derflinger (2014) teaches art at Van Derveer School in Somerville, NJ.
  • Ashley Garguilo (2014) is an art teacher at Rockingham Middle School, NC.
  • Gabe Randazzo (2014) is an art teacher at West Windsor High School South
  • Jessica Sassaman (2013) teaches art at North Falmouth Elementary School, MA.
  • Keri Hamilton (2013) is an art teacher at Dutch Neck Elementary School in West Windsor-Plainsboro.
  • Samantha Parlow (2013) is working with Teach For America in Baltimore, MD.
  • Lisa Czernikowski (2012) is an art teacher in Elizabeth School District.
  • Valerie Gawron (2012) is teaching art at Matawan Aberdeen Middle School.
  • Kelsey Long (2012) is teaching art at Academic Charter School in Jersey City.
  • Matthew Pembleton (2012) teaches art in the Princeton Public Schools
  • Dana Sedlak (2012) is attending Rutgers graduate school to study Clinical Social Work where she plans to integrate the arts into her coursework.
  • Jaimie Bass (2011) is an art teacher in the Summit School District.
  • Julie Gallup (2011) received a first place ribbon for her photographic work at Sparta Camera Club in 2012. She has also shown her work at Gallery 14 in Hopewell, PA. She is employed at the Phoenix Center, a school for children with differing needs.
  • Keith Kozak (2011) is an art teacher at Timber Creek Regional High School.
  • Diana Montano (2011) interned at the Textile Museum in Washington DC.
  • Katie Petrillo (2011) received her MFA in 2014 from Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and is working at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
  • Rachel Razza (2011) is an art teacher at Grover Cleveland Elementary School.
  • Anne Ruffner (2011) is teaching art at Edison High School.
  • Jim Tramontano (2010) is teaching at Franklin High School.