Nordlund Receives 2023 Arthur and Isabel Wiesenberger Award for Excellence in Teaching

Nordlund on stage holding award

(L to R): Malcolm Huggins, director of Alumni Engagement; Dr. Carrie Yvonne Nordlund, professor of art education; Dr. Kenneth S. Hawkinson, university president; Alex Ogeka, executive director of KU Foundation.

KUTZTOWN, Pa. – Dr. Carrie Yvonne Nordlund, professor of art education, received Kutztown University’s 2023 Wiesenberger Award for Excellence in Teaching. The annually presented award is given to a faculty member who has demonstrated superlative teaching skills and service to the university. The award was presented during the 2023 Kutztown University Faculty and Staff Convocation and Celebration Friday, Aug. 25.

Nordlund received her Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction from the University of Missouri and Master of Art Education from the University of Central Missouri. Her Bachelor of Fine Arts in studio art is from the Kansas City Art Institute.

In 2006, Nordlund came to KU from the Midwest with 20 years of teaching experience and two dozen teaching awards under her belt. She has earned awards nationally, regionally and locally for innovative curriculum writing and teaching and designing interdisciplinary content and interrelated arts programming.

“At the core of my teaching methodology are my acts of acutely and genuinely noticing what each student desires to uncover,” Nordlund said. “Semester-to-semester and year-to-year, I utilize the student feedback and a plethora of reflection strategies to improve my pedagogy.”

Since her arrival at KU, Nordlund has continued to garner awards as she was granted National Art Educator of the Year in Higher Education/Eastern Division and Pennsylvania Art Educator of the Year in Higher Education. She then went on to be inducted as a member of the National Residence Hall Honorary after being nominated by a student.

Nordlund has published the outcomes of a reflective practice studies and models, such as Postcard Moments: Significant Moments in Teaching Art where she assessed crystalizing and paralyzing moments. Building on gains from a National Art Education Association grant, she is currently most satisfied by her design of reflective strategies in a study entitled Letters to Colleagues a Community of Practice. These practices were employed with her field students at KU and are now published in the international journal Visual Inquiry Learning and Teaching Art. Nordlund’s 2023 article, Stepping Back to Step Forward: Reflection in a Community of Practice published in Art Education: The Journal of the National Art Education Association, also highlights reflective practices employed by preservice art educators at KU.

Nordlund’s commitment to her students is eminent. She aims to mentor students through involvement, collaboration and positivity by modeling strategies to uplift morale and build community. Her colleague, Dr. Peg Speirs, states that Nordlund “carries an awareness of the oppressions experienced by under-represented groups such as women, people of color, differently abled or those marginalized by class-based/economic issues.”

Nordlund’s students also appreciate her willingness to support and guide them through their academic journeys.

“She has not only taught me what it means to be a great teacher, she models it in the classroom,” said Maria Sunick ’19. “She takes the time to see each of us as individuals with strengths and needs. She has completely altered the way I see a classroom.”