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Announcement
September 22, 2015

David Yager appointed president

University of the Arts Philadelphia
Photo: Jeremey Bot.

David Yager, Dean of Arts Division at University of California, Santa Cruz, named after national search

The University of the Arts board of trustees has appointed David Yager as the school’s next president. Yager will join the 139-year-old Philadelphia institution from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he currently serves as dean of the Arts Division, distinguished professor of art, and an affiliated faculty member of the Digital Arts and New Media program. Yager begins his tenure at UArts on January 15, 2016.

“We are delighted that David will be joining UArts to lead this unique and dynamic institution into the future,” said UArts Board of trustees Chairman Jeffrey A. Lutsky. “He has a deep and personal understanding of the importance of an arts education that emphasizes innovation and develops creative leaders.”

An accomplished visual artist, Yager also has an extensive background as an artist, an academic, a researcher utilizing design to improve the health care space, an entrepreneur and a business executive.

“David is well equipped to enhance UArts’ position as the only private university in the nation that expands lives by connecting the performing, visual and communication arts in both the classroom and the community,” added Lutsky. “We’re confident that his vision, experience and leadership will strengthen the university and further expand its reputation as an innovative leader. We look forward to welcoming him to Philadelphia.”

“I am excited to join this innovative university as its next president,” Yager said. “My own experience across the areas of visual art, design, performing arts, academia, corporate and health care industries mirrors UArts’ focus on developing creative young leaders with the potential to influence an almost unlimited number of fields. I am looking forward to helping to shape the university’s future and to raising its profile as we enter this new chapter in its history together. I’m especially looking forward to working with UArts’ high quality faculty, students and scholars.”

Yager joined UC Santa Cruz as dean of the Arts Division in 2009. He created multiple graduate programs, including two doctoral programs and two master’s programs, as well as a number of new majors, including an undergraduate major in gaming and playable media.

Before joining UC Santa Cruz, Yager spent 23 years at University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), where he was a distinguished professor and Wilson Elkins Professor of Visual Art, founder and director of the Imaging Research Center (IRC), founder and director of the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture (CADVC), and founder and director of the Innovation and Design Lab (IDL). Yager brought the IDL concept with him to California where he founded UC Santa Cruz’s Innovation and Design Lab (IDL). Under his direction, the goal of IDL is to create new knowledge in the health and wellness industries through a holistic approach to innovation and design research that generates products, tools, services and solutions to improve health outcomes. The lab’s primary research is based at the Children’s Center and the Department of Pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, where Yager holds a faculty position in pediatrics.

Previously, Yager served as chair of the department of Art and Art History at the University of South Florida and director of its nationally acclaimed Graphicstudio, which collaborated with artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Jim Dine and Robert Mapplethorpe.

Yager’s art training began with painting, printmaking, photography, film and video. A noted photographer and designer, his work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. His work ultimately transitioned to digital and imaging technologies, visualization, animation and simulation—the precursors to his current work in digital imaging and health care design, which responds to current culture and cultural trends. Yager earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Connecticut, a Master of Fine Arts from Florida State University and an honorary doctorate in design from De Montfort University in Leicester, England.

 

 

University of the Arts appoints new president

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