Executive master's student Allen Nance commissioned local schoolchildren to paint the picture for the business school (above), while MBA student Jozef Purdes helped coordinate donations of pictures from students in the Georgia Tech Photo Club. Below are four of Purdes's photos now hanging in the College:
Widely recognized for being state-of-the-art, the College of Management's new building is gradually getting filled with works of art, thanks to the generosity of Georgia Tech students.
Twenty-four photos recently donated by the Georgia Tech Photo Club now hang throughout the business school, and a large painting by local schoolchildren participating in the Creating Pride program is on display in the dean's office suite.
The painting was commissioned by Allen Nance, a student in the College's Executive Master of Science in the Management of Technology program. President of the Mansell Group, Nance serves on the advisory board of Creating Pride, a nonprofit organization offering programs that enhance academic learning through the use of the arts. Its work is meant to offset the erosion of arts programs from schools as a result of ever-shrinking budgets.
"If we don't do it, it's not like somebody else is going to do it," Nance says. "You instantly get an opportunity to see the impact that (Creating Pride) has on kids."
Through the organization's Corporate Art program, companies commission paintings from schools, which receive 10 percent of the money made to buy art supplies. Nance designated his $2,500 painting for the College of Management, asking nine fourth- and fifth-grade students from Heritage Academy to depict what they want to be when they grow up.
Each student received a square portion of a three-foot by three-foot canvas, using their creativity to illustrate such professions as architect, pediatrician, math teacher, music teacher, veterinarian, architect, and artist. They unveiled their work in a ceremony April 11 at the business school, with the students explaining their segments of the painting to an audience of Management faculty, students and staff.
Dean Terry C. Blum told the young artists: "I'm thrilled to see how each of you have expressed through your artwork what you want to be someday. You still have plenty of time to find your direction. Just remember that continuing your education through every stage of your life is very, very important. You should seek to learn something new every day."
MBA student Jozef Purdes, who was instrumental in coordinating the Georgia Tech Photo Club's donation to the business school, once thought he'd like to be a professional photographer. But he opted for a career in finance after the trauma of his first wedding assignment. "That was way too tough," he says. "The two moms were highly demanding about getting the perfect pictures of their kids."
These days Purdes prefers still-life subjects to people in his pictures, eight of which are now on display in the business school. These include seasonal shots of nature as well as business-themed photos of different currencies.
Purdes, treasurer of the Photo Club in 2005-06, helped come up with the idea for its donation to the College last year during his service on the school's Continuous Improvement Committee. The club has donated photos to other buildings on campus, including the library and Ferst Center for the Arts.
Students in the club submitted one-hundred photos to the business school for consideration. Selections were made based on how well the pictures complemented the modern look of the building and the College's mission, says Kurt Paquette, the College's chief administrative and finance officer. Some of the shots feature scenes of Atlanta and Georgia Tech while others are of abstract textures like bubbles and salt grains. Club members framed the photos with materials paid for by the College.
"This building is one of the showcases on campus," says Paquette, noting that the emphasis on glass, metal and sharp corners in its architecture calls for less rather than more decoratively.
But he would like to see the Photo Club's permanent display in the Management building, which opened in summer 2003, expanded over time. "We would like to thank the club for their generosity in working with us, and we hope that this is the beginning of a great relationship," he says.