College of Fine Arts, School of Art, School of Dance, School of Music, School of Theatre, Film & Television

The University of Arizona College of Fine Arts recognized four Outstanding Seniors at the CFA Fall Graduation Ceremony on Dec. 15 at Crowder Hall. 

The full ceremony featured remarks from Dean Andy Schulz, showcases by the Fred Fox School of Music and the School of Theatre, Film & Television, and a keynote address by Hank Stratton.

>> Watch the Fall Commencement
>> Hank Stratton’s full keynote address
>> Feature on CFA Outstanding Senior Amanda Lipp

Professorss Carissa DiCindio and Irene Romano stand up for CFA Outstanding Senior Amanda Lipp, along with Dean Andrew Schulz.

Outstanding Seniors

Amanda Lipp 
College of Fine Arts
School of Art

In their nomination letter, Professor of Art Irene Romano and Assistant Professor Carissa DiCindio wrote, “The faculty in the Art History and Art and Visual Culture Education programs jointly nominated Amanda for the School of Art award in recognition of her devotion to excellence in her scholarship, her commitment to the Tucson and Arizona arts communities through her museum work and volunteerism, and her leadership role among her peers.”

Amanda’s favorite Wildcat memory … “In the fall of 2021, upon my return from a nearly two-year break from school, I took “The Art of Mexico” with Dr. Widdifield. In that class, I began a research project revolving around one large talavera jar at the Arizona State Museum. My interest in the jar continued past the end of the class, and I am now continuing research on it via an independent study under the direction of Dr. Widdifield. When thinking back on my favorite memories, I think about being able to sit on the floor in front of the jar at the ASM pottery vault. I have visited the jar many times, studying its every crack and brushstroke. One of the reasons I love art is because of how personally I connect with it. The Arizona State Museum and the School of Art faculty facilitated this close relationship with a work of art, and I am so grateful!”

School of Dance Duane Cyrus with the school’s Outstanding Senior Jordan Torgerson.

Jordan Torgerson
School of Dance

Associate Professor of Dance Liz George writes in her nomination letter, “Jordan sets a wonderful example for her peers with her outstanding sense of professionalism in the classroom, and consistently brings positive energy into the studio”

Here’s how Jordan sets that wonderful example. “I strive to make myself available to others and provide a safe space free of judgment when in need. I make an effort every day to not let my stress impact my outgoingness so that I can promote community. I am always willing to be a listening ear or provide support to my peers.”

The Fred Fox School of Music’s Outstanding Senior Juan Guzman.

Juan Guzman
Fred Fox School of Music

In her nomination letter, Associate Professor of Clarinet Dr. Jackie Glazier writes, “Juan worked to overcome the difficulties of online and outdoor lessons by practicing diligently, making recordings of himself, and taking copious notes during lessons. He made significant progress on the clarinet in the two years that we worked together, and I credit this to his resilient and earnest attitude and his work ethic. He has been a supportive and integral member of the clarinet studio, where he has been sought out by his colleagues for his advice and guidance.”

In his program of study Guzman has “gone out to observe and practice teaching at many schools, I have played in ensembles in band and orchestra. I took the summer and attended a program in Oostende Belgium for clarinet studies. Currently, I am student teaching and serving as Choir and Orchestra Director at Pueblo High School.”

Melanie Moreno, the School of Theatre, Film & Television’s Outstanding Senior with Dean Andrew Schulz.

Melanie Moreno
School of Theatre, Film & Television 

In her nomination letter, Associate Professor of TFTV Elaine Romero wrote, “As an artist, Melanie collaborated frequently in my scriptwriting course. She always stepped up to volunteer to read and support her fellow students. I was continually delighted by her consistency and her creativity, and particularly, her interest in addressing culture, interpersonal and socio-political dynamics in her work. Melanie is a strong, actor, singer, and writer, and the type of Outstanding Senior that represents the core values of the CFA. In her time at Arizona, she has developed her own artistic voice.”

Following her experience in the theatre arts program, Moreno said “I see myself now as a strong independent Latinx woman who can create work, who is worthy of being seen and heard whether it’s through my acting, writing or my voice. I know I had a place in the BA because there are people who support my place here. Being at Arizona, my perspective on the world has broadened and has taught me how to come into my own as I transitioned from a teenager living at home to a young adult dependent on herself.”