The President’s Office at Converse University is pleased to announce the recipients of two endowed professorships in Fine Arts. Dr. Kelly McElrath Vaneman has received the Mary Reynolds Babcock Distinguished Professorship, awarded to a faculty member for excellence in music. Meirav Goldhour has received the Carrie Cathcart Owings ‘33 Endowed Professorship, awarded to an accomplished professor in interior design.
The Mary Reynolds Babcock Distinguished Professorship is Awarded to Dr. Kelly McElrath Vaneman
The Mary Reynolds Babcock Distinguished Professorship recipient Dr. Kelly McElrath Vaneman teaches both oboe lessons and music history & culture classes in the Carroll McDaniel Petrie School of Music at Converse. Her classes are energetic and exciting and ask students to actively participate—they write their own Gregorian chants, sing the Blues, and join her in Bollywood dance tutorials—and her oboe studio is characterized by both musical creativity and supportive encouragement. She is also first-year mentor of all Converse music students and works with each of them to find the best pathway to begin their journey as professional musicians.
Dr. Vaneman has performed with rock bands at CBGBs, improvised solo underscoring for theatrical productions, and performed on period instruments.
A firm believer in “have oboe, will travel,” Dr. Vaneman has performed with rock bands at CBGBs, improvised solo underscoring for theatrical productions, and performed on period instruments. She performs with both the Spartanburg Philharmonic and the Hendersonville Symphony, and she’s active in the music program at the Episcopal Church of the Advent. With her chamber group Ensemble Radieuse she has performed on four continents, presented at a wide range of conferences (including those of the International Double Reed Society, the National Flute Association, and the College Music Society), and commissioned and arranged countless works. She serves on the board of the International Alliance for Women in Music, and her compositions have been published by Trevco Music and St. James Press. Dr. Vaneman holds DMA, MMA, and MM degrees from the Yale University School of Music and received her BMus summa cum laude from Baylor University. In addition, she studied modern and Baroque oboe at the Koninklijk Konservatorium Brussel under a grant from the Belgian American Educational Foundation.
The Carrie Cathcart Owings ’33 Endowed Professorship is Awarded to Meirav Goldhour
With a true passion towards multidisciplinary collaboration and outreach, the Carrie Cathcart Owings ’33 Endowed Professorship recipient Meirav Goldhour is an Assistant Professor in the school of Art and Design, Department of Interior Design at Converse University.
Goldhour served for two years in the Israel Defense Force (IDF) as a Physical Trainer-Combat Support, in an elite paratroopers’ unit, where she met her husband Dotan, a fellow soldier. Following her military service, Goldhour pursued her undergraduate degree in Interior Architecture in Israel. She holds an MFA from the Department of Interior Design, Lamar Dodd School of Art at the University of Georgia (UGA), and has completed a professional certificate in Historic Preservation through the College of Environment and Design at UGA. Goldhour is furthering her education while currently seeking an Ed.D in Professional Leadership at Converse University.
Goldhour’s teaching style integrates sophisticated design software, also well incorporated in the architecture and design industry.
Goldhour gained experience in community outreach while working for Archway Partnership, redesigning Adaptive reuse buildings, taking place in various communities in the state of Georgia. She adopts this approach into her classroom at Converse, where students receive the opportunity to design projects for “real” clients in the local and non-local communities. These past projects included collaboration with the Spartanburg Area of Mental Health, the Greenville Chabad Jewish Center, and a Brewery design in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Goldhour’s teaching style integrates sophisticated design software, also well incorporated in the architecture and design industry. The software is offered as a tool for students to explore their projects and present them professionally.