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Suguru Hiraide, Professor of Art in the Juanita and Ralph Harvey School of Visual Arts, is the first recipient of a new fellowship at Midwestern State University that will allow faculty in the creative arts to spend one semester recharging their creative batteries outside of the classroom.

The Jane Spears Carnes Faculty Fellowship in Creative Endeavors, made possible by a gift from Carnes, is a support grant to reward and refresh faculty in creative fields so they might take a semester off from teaching to enhance their research, artistic endeavors, and teaching. It will support the faculty activities and their replacement in the classroom for one semester.

Hiraide says the semester away from the classroom will enable him to learn new techniques, knowledge and skills that he’ll pass on to his students. “I’m thrilled to be able to focus on my creative research, and then share what I discover with my students,” Hiraide said. He also will be able to attend two exhibitions in Japan without worrying about being absent from his classes.

Dr. Martin Camacho, Dean of the Lamar D. Fain College of Fine Arts, said that the Carnes Faculty Fellowship is of tremendous importance for both the faculty member and the students. “We strive to provide MSU students with an education and preparation from successful experts in their field. The Carnes Fellowship allows us to continue that promise – Mr. Hiraide’s artistic development will ultimately have a direct impact in the classroom,” Camacho said.

Carnes has been an art teacher herself. She previously owned an art gallery and gave lessons to children. After the gallery closed, she taught art to adults in her home and now writes. “I realized how critical it was to have time and solitude to work,” Carnes said. “It’s crucial to have time to block out the world so you can focus.”

A longtime supporter of all the arts in Wichita Falls, Carnes has served on boards for the Wichita Falls Symphony Orchestra and the Wichita Falls Museum of Art at MSU Texas. She also served on the MSU Texas Board of Regents from 2008-2014.