B is for Background

| February 10, 2014

Every class in my grad school career has began with an introduction of who I am, where I come from, what work experience I have and why I am in the class. At first I found this awkward and uncomfortable. I was a recent college grad from New Jersey who went to Rutgers, one of the youngest in my cohort and with no paid work experience in my chosen field of arts administration and a decent fear of public speaking. After a year and a half I’ve gotten used to it. I realize that the background you bring to education is important, especially since most of my classes are discussion style, meaning that everyone has a perspective that we had not thought of before, not due to any malice but mostly because of the dominance of our own experiences at the forefront of our minds. This sharing leads us to organic learning from each other. I find that especially in my business focused classes having international perspectives on topics such as government funding, really widened my perspective and changed my thought process.

Background in Artworks as exemplified by Thomas Eakins, The Gross Clinic, 1875. Background shows portraits of real students, Dr. Gross, and the mother of the patient.

The Pond—Moonrise, 1904, Edward Steichen (American, born Luxembourg, 1879–1973) Platinum print with applied color; 15 5/8 x 19 in. (39.7 x 48.2 cm). This imagine showcases the mysterious beauty of the background of a pond scene which is the focus of this photograph.