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The College of Visual and Performing Arts at James Madison University believes that equity, access and inclusion are moral imperatives and artistic obligations. Diversity—in the stories we represent, the students we serve, and the audiences we engage—is vital for the health and relevance of contemporary arts practice. CVPA, therefore, welcomes diversity of perspective, ethnicity, race, religion, socio-economic status, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ability.

The faculty and staff of the College of Visual and Performing Arts stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.

We are listening and learning in this moment, and we commit ourselves anew to joining Black individuals and communities in the fight against racial inequality. As educators and artists, we pledge to continue this deeply necessary work not only in our classrooms and performance spaces, but also in our hearts and minds.  

To our Black students: We see you and we stand with you.

CVPA Faculty Involvement
Susan Zurbrigg
New Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Named

Art professor Susan Zurbrigg has been named the new director of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives for the CVPA! A recent recipient of the Beck Faculty Fellowship, Susan has been a tireless advocate for change through the arts at JMU and in the Harrisonburg and Rockingham communities through the Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation "Change the Narrative" project.

In Fall 2019, Professor Zurbrigg staged an art intervention with JMU students that memorialized Charlotte Harris, a black woman lynched by a white mob near Harrisonburg in 1878. On Saturday, September 26, 2020, the Northeast Neighborhood Association and the Harrisonburg Community Remembrance Project unveiled a historical marker for Charlotte Harris in Court Square. The community was invited to attend the unveiling ceremony virtually on The City of Harrisonburg's Facebook page.

CVPA Faculty and the African, African American, and Diaspora (AAAD) Studies Center

The African, African American, and Diaspora (AAAD) Studies Center provides interdisciplinary knowledges, programming, and initiatives related to Black peoples, histories, cultures, languages, economics, philosophies, ideas, and socio-political structures. The Center’s core mission is to cater to student-faculty constituencies with academic interests in the peoples, cultures, and institutions of Africa and the African Diaspora.

Over 65 faculty members drawn from different departments and disciplines constitute the program's primary academic constituency.

Several are drawn from CVPA.

Amy Lewis
Amy Lewis
Music Education
School of Music

Beth Hinderliter
Dr. Beth Hinderliter
AAAD Programs Committee
School of Art, Design and Art History
Diane Phoenix-Neal
Dr. Diane Phoenix-Neal
Music Education
School of Music
John Ott
Dr. John Ott
Art History
School of Art, Design and Art History
Kyle Hackett
Kyle Hackett
Art Education
School of Art, Design and Art History
Susan Zurbrigg
Art Education
School of Art, Design and Art History
Wren Stevens
College of Visual and Performing Arts
Educational Resources

These resources are curated by the JMU College of Visual and Performing Arts. While not an exhaustive list, it seeks to provide resources for arts students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the larger community.

Anti-Racism Resources
 Special thanks to the School of Theatre and Dance for providing these resources.

 Black Lives Matter:

Collated Anti-Racism Education Resource Lists:

Articles and Tools to Teaching Race and Anti-Racist Practice in the Classroom:

What CVPA Academic Council Is Reading:

Diversity Events

More CVPA sponsored events coming soon!

Please visit our Diversity Resources on Campus section for additional events.


Past Events
Disability Studies and Music Education Symposium

Thursday, April 15 - Saturday, April 17, 2021

The Center for Inclusive Music Engagement, in partnership with Augustana College, is excited to host a second biennial Disability Studies and Music Education Symposium. The virtual gathering will focus around the theme "Intersectionality of Disabled Persons/Persons with Disabilities' Experiences In, With, Through, and Around Music," and build on their first-of-its-kind 2019 symposium, affording researcher-practitioner-artists opportunities to share disability studies-related work and to discuss potential uses of disability studies theorization for their future scholarship and teaching.

The keynote speaker is Leroy F. Moore, Jr., a Black writer, poet, hip-hop/music lover, community activist and feminist with a physical disability; he is also founder of Krip Nop Nation. Other presentations will be shared by students, faculty, and community-based artists, practitioners, and scholars form JMU, the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates.

The Virtual Symposium will be facilitated on Zoom. Register here.

View the full schedule here.

Additional information at can be found on the CIME Projects page and the official Facebook event post.

Diversity Resources on Campus

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