Dean is the Art Teacher for the Ascending Artists program, as well as a Vocational Advisor for the LIVE cohort. They received a B.A. in Psychology at Oberlin College, and are hoping to continue toward an M.A. in Art Therapy. Prior to working at BHMA, they spent many rewarding years volunteering and working for the St. Joe Community Co-op in Sturgis, MI. Dean is passionate about accessibility in the arts, particularly in the design of adaptive tools and implementation of therapeutic art practices for folks with disabilities. In the classroom, they practice a student-directed and instructor-supported approach to develop creative autonomy, confidence, and critical thinking, and incorporate a framework of critical pedagogy into their lessons.
Outside of the studio, Dean loves fabulism and fairytales, collecting pink pebbles on river-side hikes, experimenting with art mediums and materials, combing through local LGBTQ+ archives, and serenading her weird and spoiled pasta dog, Cavatelli.