Monthly Member Highlight: Liz Swindell

Greetings! I’m Liz Swindell, the art teacher at Montpelier High School. This is my first year of full time teaching at a public school since earning my MAT in Art Education in August 2018 from Vermont College of Fine Art. I am absolutely in love with my job!

In my classroom, I strive to create an environment that is welcoming and accessible. Growing up on the North Shore of Massachusetts, I was an art room kid. I spent every minute I could in the art room and my teachers were my greatest mentors. Being able to host a space where teens can be creative, curious, take risks, express and challenge themselves gives me so much joy and purpose. Being back in the art room feels natural and I strive to create curriculum where students feel safe and confident to explore personal meaning and social justice in their artmaking.

I started attending VATA meetings as a Pre-service teacher. I saw joining the association as a way to build my professional community and to gain more knowledge about the landscape of art ed in Vermont. I have found that being the only art teacher in my school can be isolating at times. Being part of VATA has helped me to connect with other art teachers around the state, keeps me informed about events and student art competitions and offers continued learning opportunities as an educator.

This month, lots of my energy is going towards prep for the annual MHS Art Show. This year, for the first time, the show will be held at Alumni Hall at Vermont College of Fine Art. Feel free to stop by anytime May 22 to see the show or join us for the grand celebration from 6-8pm!

You can also follow along with my classroom on Instagram @ mhsartclass