I approach art education from a point of hope in the potential of art as a catalyst for positive social change and the betterment of humanity at large. I will employ art and visual culture, utilizing its potential as best I am able, as a means to promote that positive growth within my students. In my classroom, that will mean approaching art critically, experimentally, interdisciplinarily, traditionally, multi-culturally, and therapeutically. My philosophy as an art educator is to seek a balance between aspects and principles of education and art that are sometimes in opposition with one another (and amongst themselves) and, in finding that balance, to reach a state in which students are valued as more than just depositories of my artistic knowledge and whose work is nurtured and encouraged in an environment of mutual respect and learning. By learning in this manner, students will become more informed and tolerant citizens, critical of the world around them and with a greater ability to articulate and reflect upon their lives, feelings, and aspirations. Becoming and functioning as some sort of “studio artist, organized instructor, designer, multi-cultural worker, social justice advocate, champion of both tolerance, and critical thinking, therapist, pseudo anthropologist, and defender of my existence as an art educator” hybrid is my ultimate goal as an educator.