Date of Award

Spring 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Higher Education Policy and Student Affairs

Committee Chairperson

Jason Wozniak, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Jacqueline S. Hodes, EdD

Committee Member

John Elmore, Ph.D.


This thesis examines the history and impact neoliberal ideology has had on the arts and humanities within the North American University, specifically noting how access to the arts continues to dwindle in college curriculums. In turn, this thesis calls on student affairs practitioners to integrate longitudinal, arts-based methodology into programming in order to counter the continuing diminishment of the arts within the classroom. As supported by the works of John Dewey, Paolo Freire, and Maxine Greene, I propose an intervention that gives students of all majors access to a year-long engagement with art making that responds to an issue of social justice (for example, incarceration or environmental racism). This thesis strives to advocate for the arts in a way that is not linked to career outcomes, as prescribed by neoliberal ideology, but rather centers its advocacy on the arts as a tool for re-humanizing students within a university system that reduces their humanity to numbers and outputs.