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UGA art student wins $15,000 Windgate Fellowship award

Athens, Ga. – The University of North Carolina-Asheville’s Center for Craft, Creativity and Design has awarded 10 graduating seniors each with $15,000 in the form of a Windgate Fellowship, including Rachel Columb from the University of Georgia Lamar Dodd School of Art.

Universities from across the U.S. were invited to nominate two graduating seniors with exemplary skills in craft for one of the largest awards offered nationally to art students. Applicants completed an online application with images of their work and a proposal outlining how the $15,000 would enhance their careers.

Columb, who will graduate in May with a bachelor’s degree in jewelry and metalwork, attended Forsyth Central High School in Cumming, Ga. She also is completing a certificate in the interdisciplinary writing program at UGA.

“I’m extremely excited about the award,” Columb said. “It’s such a blessing to be able to start out in the infamous real world with the means to build a studio, explore ideas and jump-start my working practice as a craft artist.”

The CCCD received 114 applications that were reviewed by a selection panel. They then selected 10 fellows.

“I couldn’t be more proud of Rachel and the innovative and engaging work she has created during her time in our program,” said Mary Hallam Pearse, assistant professor of art and chair of the jewelry and metals area in the school of art. “This fellowship will provide Rachel with the funding to travel to Europe to do extensive research on Wunderkammer [cabinets of curiosities], purchase tools and equipment for a studio and make a body of work that reflects her research. The support during this pivotal transition from student to artist is essential to the growth of their own work.”

Columb is the second winner of a Windgate Fellowship from UGA. For more information on the art program at UGA, see