University Laureate to visit Penn State Lehigh Valley

Renowned jewelry artist addresses creative problem-solving in a special talk next month

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. — Penn State Lehigh Valley will welcome the University’s 2016-17 laureate, Rebecca Strzelec, professor of visual arts and program coordinator of visual arts studies at Penn State Altoona, as part of her statewide tour from 12:15-1:15 p.m. on Wednesday, April 12, in Room 302 at the Lehigh Valley campus for a special presentation, “Art + Engineering=Creative Problem Solving”, to students, faculty and staff, as well as members of the community.  

Rebecca Strzelec

The Penn State Laureate is an honorary position held by a full-time faculty member in the humanities or arts. The 2016-17 laureate is Rebecca Strzelec.

Credit: Rebecca Strzelec

Strzelec’s work focuses on investigating the ways wearable objects interact with the surfaces of the body and includes the creation of these wearable objects through computer aided design (CAD) and rapid prototyping or 3D printing. She has been using 3D printing technologies in her work since 1999. 3D printing processes have matured quickly, resulting in greater accessibility and attention and bringing about significant and meaningful advances in many fields including healthcare, safety, architecture, and art and design. It has also raised questions of ownership, ethics and responsibility.

Strzelec's talk will look at 3D printing’s trajectory, as well as introducing the work she completed on a four-year, $2 million National Science Foundation (NSF) grant focused on multi-field responsive origami structures and smart materials.

The Penn State Laureate is an honorary position held by a full-time faculty member in the humanities or arts. The laureate is assigned half-time for one academic year to bring an enhanced level of social, cultural, artistic and human perspective and awareness to a broad array of audiences.

The event is free and open to the public. Space is limited. For more information about Strzelec, her work and publications, visit the Penn State Laureate website.

Strzelec’s area of expertise is especially relevant to the Lehigh Valley campus given that The Arts Project at Penn State Lehigh Valley has started offering a new six-week class, Introduction to 3D Design with Kate Morgan, director of instructional design and virtual learning at Penn State Lehigh Valley. This course addresses the basic principles of working with a 3D printer; provides discussion on the history and future of 3D printing; and offers hands-on learning both with the actual printer and through the creation of unique 3D designs. The next 3D Design class will run on Mondays from May 15 to June 19.

Piece of artwork titled Cross Section 7

Cross Section 7 by Rebecca Strzelec

Credit: Rebecca Strzelec



Dennille Schuler

Public Relations Specialist
Penn State Lehigh Valley

Work Phone