The Mission

The Kutztown University Arts Society includes community and university volunteers who are both patrons of the arts and who are dedicated to advancing arts programming at Kutztown University and in the surrounding community.

The Society raises funds to support arts programming to include

♦  Promoting the Love of Arts for Youth Series (PLAY)

♦  KU Presents!

♦  University Art Galleries

♦  President’s International Quintet

♦  Kutztown Arts Academy

♦  Arts Programming Grants to Kutztown

♦  University Students, Faculty and Staff

♦  Other important arts-centered programming


The Society raises funds through

♦  Individual Donations

♦  Corporate Sponsorships

♦  Social Fundraising Functions 






The idea of creating an arts society at Kutztown University came from Dr. Kenneth S. Hawkinson and Ann Marie Hayes-Hawkinson, University President. In January of 2018, Dr. Hawkinson formed a group of KU staff and asked them to develop this idea into something that will:


♦ Help existing KU arts offerings that are open to the public survive and thrive


♦ Break down “silos” and promote collaboration between the various arts programs


♦ Provide arts engagement opportunities for K-12 schools by bringing students to KU’s campus and artists to their schools


♦ Expand current KU arts programs in order to serve more people from the community


♦ Unite the community-at-large through the arts by fostering a supportive and inclusive community for artists and lovers of the arts


♦ Create fun and unique experiences for the arts community to gather, network and share


♦ Support new arts initiatives that will benefit KU faculty and students while working with members of the community


By the Summer of 2018, the appointed staff members forged an outline for the new KU Arts Society, and they launched their first initiative called P.L.A.Y. (Promoting the Love of Arts in Youth). Over the first year of its offerings, P.L.A.Y. served nearly 2,000 K-12 students, representing 30 different schools from throughout the region.


Also in the Fall of that year, several members of the KU faculty and key people from the greater community, were approached to serve on the new organization’s board of directors to help launch its success. Informal meetings were held to iron out some details and catch everyone up to speed, and in January of 2019, the KUAS Inaugural Board of Directors held their first official meeting. On the Inaugural Board were: Maria Asteriadou, Amy Botwright, Kate Clair, Pat Corpora, Sandy Corpora, Sandy Green, Ann Marie Hayes-Hawkinson, Dr. Kenneth S. Hawkinson, Nadine Hoffman, Ben Hoffman, Jackie Jones, Dr. Michelle Kiec, Suzanne Kirk, Kevin Kjos, Shelley Klassen, Kurt Nikkanen, Alex Ogeka, Amy Ridenour, Jason Romanski, Dr. Nicole Romanski, Matt Santos, Dr. Harry Serio, Mary Ann Serio, Dr. Brad Shope, Karen Stanford, Bob Watrous, and Bryan Zellmer.


In July of 2019, voting concluded and the first elected board was named, each to serve a three-year term.





♦ Raised over $20,000

♦ Launched P.L.A.Y. Initiative: served 2,000 K-12 students from 30 different schools

♦ Published the first, collaborative KU Arts Brochure

♦ Scheduled 2 KUAS trips, sponsored an art sale event, and presented a second season of P.L.A.Y. for 2019-2020

♦ Formed the Schaeffer-Sharadin Fellowship and KU Arts Hall of Fame, which will hold its first inductions in 2020





Like any new organization, it will take time to build the foundation, but the KU Arts Society will continue to grow and expand. They will provide substantial support for the various initiatives outlined in their mission, and as their funding increases through memberships, sponsorships, and donations, they will roll out the following:


ONGOING: Hold events, gatherings and trips; identify and secure funding sources; sponsor collaborative marketing efforts; help bring attention and grow attendance for arts offerings at KU; and  


PHASE 1 (launched in 2018; to be fully up to speed by 2020): Promoting the Love of the Arts in Youth (PLAY); and the KU Arts Society Fellowship & Arts Hall of Fame


PHASE 2 (estimated start in 2021): Growth of public offerings by KU Presents! and University Art Galleries


PHASE 3 (estimated start in 2022): Arts Programming Grants to KU Students, Faculty and Staff


PHASE 4 (estimated start in 2023): President’s International Quintet


PHASE 5 (estimated start in 2024): Other important arts-centered programming at Kutztown University and the surrounding community as the Society sees as a good fit with its mission

Copyright © 2019 Kutztown University Foundation