Campus News

Art professor named new faculty director for First-Year Odyssey Seminar program

Melissa Harshman

Melissa Harshman, an associate professor in the Lamar Dodd School of Art, has been named faculty director of the First-Year Odyssey Seminar program. Through the program, small-group academic seminars taught by tenured and tenure-track faculty are offered to all incoming freshmen.

“Melissa is dedicated to student learning and engagement. Her experience teaching an FYO seminar, commitment to instructional excellence and administrative experience make her an ideal choice for this role,” said Laura Jolly, vice president for instruction. “Melissa brings creativity, a collaborative style and a student-centered focus to the First-Year Odyssey program. We are thrilled to have her on the FYO team.”

As faculty director, Harshman will be responsible for recruiting faculty; serving as a liaison to faculty groups; serving on the advisory committee; and, as a member of the FYO team, providing leadership for improving and sustaining the FYO program.

She is succeeding Tim Foutz, who served as director in the founding year of the program from 2011-12.

Harshman has been a faculty member at UGA since 1993, teaching both undergraduate- and graduate-level courses. She served for two years as the graduate coordinator for the art school and has been chair of the printmaking and book arts department for 12 years. For the last two years, she has taught the FYO course, “The Fine Art of Printmaking,” which, in addition to her extensive involvement at UGA, has provided her with a solid foundation to lead the program.

Established in 2011, the First-Year Odyssey Seminar program provides students with an introduction to life at UGA by engaging them with faculty and other first-year students in a small-class environment. Students learn about UGA’s culture through lectures, social events and learning opportunities outside the classroom.