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Arts MSU

Arts MSU

The arts are essential to vibrant, thriving communities—MSU included.

Arts MSU is a strategy that moves creativity to the center of university life by integrating the arts into our educational experiences, our research activities, our outreach, and our campus culture.

Photo of MSU Museum

Guided by the belief that the arts are essential to a vibrant university community that is resilient, inclusive, collaborative, and globally minded, this strategy is committed to advancing the impact and amplifying the presence of the arts across campus. Arts MSU provides a strong framework for the integration of arts into MSU’s land-grant mission, strengthening our campus through innovative and interdisciplinary practices of discovering, connecting, exploring, and remembering.

Broad Art Museum


Creative inquiry and expression are integral to advancing knowledge, the cornerstone of the university’s mission. Arts have a transformative impact on learning, providing the tools to experience the world through different perspectives, engage with the most pressing issues of our time, and explore what it means to be human.

In laying the groundwork for Arts MSU, a planning committee of community and campus leaders conducted focus group interviews with MSU students, faculty, staff, administrators, and arts stakeholders in Greater Lansing to learn more about why the arts mattered to them. This collaborative campus community process shaped the values for Arts MSU.

Students smiling and walking

Inclusive: Connective by nature, arts on campus will be accessible, relevant, and intentionally support the diverse communities we serve.

Dress Sculpture

Transformative: Woven into the fabric of university life, engagement with the arts will catalyze empowering and lasting change to our campus culture.

People in an art gallery

Committed: Guided by a deeply rooted sense of social responsibility, arts on campus must be dedicated to advancing the common good.

Photo of Bradd Wilcuts with Student

Risk-taking: Arts on campus will be bold and experiment with ways of addressing issues and ideas, modeling and encouraging the risk-taking inherent in learning.

Photo of students making art

Globally Minded:
Reflecting the international focus of MSU, the arts promote exploration and engagement with diverse modes of understanding and expression.

Impactful: The arts merge the critical with the creative, providing the skills necessary to approach 21st century problems with empathy, resourcefulness, and an openness to think differently.

Integrating the Arts


Integrate the arts into the educational experience, fostering a more holistic approach to learning and problem-solving. By including the arts in curricular and co-curricular experiences, we can transform the intellectual and ethical habits of students, leading to an expanded, inclusive sense of community and an understanding of how curiosity and empathy drive innovation and change. The arts should be woven integrally into the fabric of an MSU education.


Integrate the arts into the research endeavor, driving innovation and openness to new ways of knowing.  Co-discovering and co-creating empowers the identification of new and complex problems—laying the groundwork for creative solutions and amplifying the broader impacts of knowledge generated at MSU towards the common good. We will design deliberate opportunities for active engagement among the arts and across other disciplines.


Integrate the arts into the campus infrastructure, nurturing a sense of place and community. By rethinking how public art functions on campus, and by creating new forms of engagement for various communities, we can build stronger ties to MSU, to one another, and to our neighboring communities. Experiencing and making art together empowers conversations around difficult and often divisive issues. The arts should be a ubiquitous feature of the campus and the community experience.




Experience art for students, by students. This recurring series of pop-up performances brings the arts out of their typical venues and into new spaces around campus. In alignment with the arts strategy’s goal to more deeply integrate the arts into MSU life, Arts4U gives students more agency in developing the sorts of experiences they want to have.

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STEAMpower Artist-in-Residence

This high-profile artist-in-residence program brings together leading MSU researchers, working artists, and graduate students across disciplines to design innovative collaborations across arts, humanities, and sciences. Housed in the new STEM Teaching & Learning Facility, this yearlong residency facilitates new research and novel modes of cross-disciplinary learning that address global challenges.



The science is clear—art is good for us.  


The arts at MSU are deeply invested in the wellbeing of our campus community. Experiences with the arts can help reduce stress, provide creative outlets for our emotions, and inspire feelings of joy and hope. They can help us connect both to the place that we’re in—this campus, our home—and to one another.


Here is a list of resources and activities that support wellness, encourage mindfulness, and allow us to take time out of our day to care for our full selves.

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The arts at MSU are distinct because they happen here. Grounded in MSU’s land-grant mission but reflective of its global focus, the arts strategy advances the university’s goal to remain among the most socially impactful and accessible universities by producing arts experiences that are uniquely possible on this campus.

Outdoor sculpture of vortex

Intentionally aligned with key themes in the MSU 2030 strategic plan, the arts connect us to the most pressing issues of our time in ways which are present, relevant, and rooted in the fabric of our campus culture.



Contacts for University Arts and Collections

Judith Stoddart (she/her/hers)
Associate Provost                        
University Arts and Collections
Phone: 517-432-2524

Morgan Butts (she/her/hers)
Director of Communications and Marketing
University Arts and Collections
Phone: 517-353-2440