November 3, 2023
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator
Belle Caldwell Earns College of the Arts Excellence Award at VSU
|Marybelle “Belle” Christine Caldwell of Dalton, Georgia, is the recipient of the Fall 2023 President’s Award for Academic Excellence for the College of the Arts at Valdosta State University. She will graduate summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Art during VSU’s 236th Commencement at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9.|
VALDOSTA — Marybelle “Belle” Christine Caldwell of Dalton, Georgia, is the recipient of the Fall 2023 President’s Award for Academic Excellence for the College of the Arts at Valdosta State University.
The President’s Award for Academic Excellence is presented to a high-performing graduating student in each of VSU’s six colleges — Harley Langdale Jr. College of Business Administration, College of Nursing and Health Sciences, James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Science and Mathematics, and College of the Arts.
Caldwell will be recognized during VSU’s 236th Commencement at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9, on the Main Campus Front Lawn. She will graduate summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Art.
“Winning this award feels so mythical, like something I never even considered would be a reality for me,” she shared. “I’ve always known that I was a hard-working student, but I also felt like I could never compare to all the wonderful students around me and their accomplishments. I’m not the type of person to put myself above others, especially when it comes to the tremendous talent of the artists around me. I am truly honored to receive this award, even if it still feels like a dream.”
Caldwell transferred to VSU from the College of Coastal Georgia in 2021.
As a student at VSU, she supported campus-wide resource conservation and recycling efforts as a member of the Environmental Issues Committee’s Resource Conservation Subcommittee. She worked to increase affordable housing opportunities as a member of Habitat for Humanity, where she served as secretary for one year, and she created must-read content for Her Campus, an online magazine for college women where she served as secretary, treasurer, and head editor.
Caldwell focused her art studio studies on photography, printmaking, and graphic design. She presented “Abandonment of Ariadne and its Visual Variations of Myth in Art” at the 2022 Georgia Undergraduate Research Conference. Her creative work was featured in VSU’s Dedo Maranville Fine Arts Gallery on several occasions, including Continuum, the Fall 2023 senior exhibition; the 2023 Student Juried Art Competition; and the 2021 Make/Mark, an exhibition of first-year art students taking foundation-level courses.
Caldwell’s “Mind, Mood, and Me” photography series was featured in VSU’s 2022 Day of Inclusion Art Exhibition, where she earned honorable mention honors. Before coming to VSU, she published four photographs in the College of Coastal Georgia’s Seaswells Magazine, where she earned Best Overall Photo and Best Computer-Enhanced Photo honors.
Her commitment to academic, creative, leadership, and service excellence resulted in her being named a Zell Miller Scholar and earning repeated Dean’s List recognitions.
After graduation Caldwell plans to move back home, find a job working with plants in a garden center or nursery, and continue to expand her artistic abilities.
Caldwell wants to apply for artist residencies that allow her the time, space, and resources needed to research and develop her printmaking practice while exploring the world.
Her supportive family includes father Gerald Caldwell; mother Estrellita Warfield; stepfather Carl Warfield; dogs Blaze, Alina, and Dante; hermit crabs Tom and Jerry; anole lizard Caballera; and a number of plants “that have given me much-needed serotonin throughout college.”On the Web: