KCAD Staff Member, Alum Honored for Outstanding Work by Michigan Art Education Association

Posted October 31, 2017 in Master of Art Education, Alumni

Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University (KCAD) Dean of Student Success Sandy Britton and alumna Tricia Erickson (’10, Master of Art Education) have been honored by the Michigan Art Education Association (MAEA) for outstanding contributions to art education in the state.

Erickson, an art teacher at Northview High School, was named both 2017 Secondary Art Educatior of the Year and Art Educator of the Year. Additionally, both she and Britton are among the four recipients of the 2017 MAEA Distinguished Service Award.

Each year, MAEA members who go above and beyond in supporting and advancing art education are nominated for this honor by their peers. Winners are then chosen by MAEA leadership.

"I am thrilled that the MAEA has recognized Dean Britton and alumna Tricia Erickson for their significant accomplishments. They are both exemplars of the impact of KCAD's commitment to cultivating creative leadership and fostering innovative educational experiences,” says KCAD President Leslie Bellavance.

Erickson has taught at the K-12 level for the past 13 years, 10 of those in her current position. She’s also a KCAD dual enrollment instructor, teaching art classes for high school students than can earn them credit at KCAD, and has taught summer enrichment camps for both Northview Public Schools and the Grand Rapids Art Museum.

Photo of Tricia EricksonTricia Erickson

In addition to being a MAEA member, Erickson served as the organization’s Region 9 liaison from 2012 to 2015 and co-chaired the MAEA Fall Conference in 2015. She also was a featured presenter at the 2016 MAEA Fall Conference, and was part of a 2016 National Art Education Association (NAEA) webinar focused on the power of art educators to change lives.

“It’s such a humbling thing to be honored for something that so many art teachers are deserving of,” says Erickson. “These awards are really a tribute to all of the special people in my life that lend a hand, allow me to lean on them, and remind me to stay the course even on the toughest days.”

Over the past 32 years at KCAD, Britton has worked alongside her colleagues to build a community on campus that invites students to explore, experiment, grow, and mature into impactful and successful artists, designers, art educators, and art historians. As Dean of Student Success, she leads the collaborative efforts of a number the college’s staff departments to develop personalized recruitment strategies for potential students and support systems for current students that foster academic, professional, and personal success.

Photo of Sandy BrittonSandy Britton

Britton also serves on KCAD’s President’s Cabinet and Leadership Team, and represents the college on the West Michigan Presidents’ Compact Committee, a collective of ten West Michigan colleges and universities that are committed to promoting policies of respect and support for every individual.

As a longstanding MAEA member, Britton has made it a priority to network with other individuals who are passionate about creative education, which in turn has led her to connect with many future KCAD students during their K-12 education.

“I feel that one of my most important responsibilities, and certainly one of the most gratifying, is to support and encourage the next generation of creative thinkers, makers, and doers. This will always be my passion,” says Britton. “I am honored to be have been nominated by my colleagues for this award.”

Britton, Erickson, and the other 2017 MAEA Distinguished Service Award recipients will be officially honored at the 2017 MAEA Fall Conference, which will be held from November 2-6 in Detroit.


Learn more about KCAD’s Master of Art Education program.