Taking Her Degree and Making A Difference
“Art tells the most potent stories of resilience and purpose on an individual and collective level. Art history gave me the tools to unpack those ideas and the significance of medium in expressing them.”- Laura Baldwin, Class of 2018
Laura Baldwin, ’18, graduated with a degree in Art History degree and minors in Advertising and Arts Administration. She now works as a program assistant at the St. Johns Cultural Council.
Originally from New Port Richey, Fla., Baldwin always felt drawn to art because of her family’s artistic and musical inclinations. She began her college career studying graphic design but transferred to Flagler in 2013 as a fine art major. After taking an art history course in her first semester, she discovered the field she wanted to pursue and changed her major.
Through her major, Baldwin studied not only art history but also gallery management and curation. As the first student to graduate with a minor in arts administration, she learned how art institutions are structured, operated, and funded. Baldwin spent a semester interning as a gallery assistant for the Crisp-Ellert Art Museum, where she helped with exhibition research and installation. She also attended the annual New York study away, an opportunity for students to view a broad scope of art and museums, network with professionals in the field, and bond with fellow Flagler creatives. For her final exhibition in her gallery management class, Baldwin researched and curated a show about the Florida East Coast. Through this exhibition, she displayed her perspective on St. Augustine’s art community, interacted with original Florida paintings, and engaged with visitors who viewed the art. This exhibition solidified her passion for art history and validated the career path she had chosen.
After graduating, Baldwin began working for the St. Johns Cultural Council. In this role, she focuses on research and writing for social media, enabling her to tell stories of St. Augustine. She recently assisted in creating a month-long virtual concert series of local artists in April, which included a collaboration with Gamble Rogers Music Festival for their 25th anniversary.
Baldwin encourages art history students to keep an open mind when choosing classes and when thinking of a career. She also recommends staying in touch with professors after graduation.
“Art history is so much bigger than pretty marble sculptures and oil paintings of battle scenes,” said Baldwin. “Beyond the canvas, art history is a powerful tool for shaping perspective and fostering compassion for a better tomorrow.”