Erin Strohschein

Erin sitting in front of a painting of the sun and the ocean
Visual Arts Teacher for Swansboro High School, Swansboro, NC

Education: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art, minor in Art History, UNC Charlotte (2005)

Hometown: Pfafftown, NC

We asked Erin Strohschein when she first realized that she loved art, and she said, "I've always loved what my mom called "messing" in different art techniques as a kid. When I got to high school, I had a teacher named Ms. Lawson who was a ceramic artist. She taught me how to throw on the wheel and really drove home the fact that visual art was for me."

Currently Erin is visual arts teacher for Swansboro High School in coastal North Carolina, where she recently was honored as "Teacher of the Week."

" I teach Beginning and Intermediate Visual Art, and Ceramics. I also have begun a National Art Honor Society chapter at Swansboro High School for the advanced art students."

So far, her favorite projects are the ones that allow her students to connect with the community. "We've done a lot with the town of Swansboro, which is very supportive of our school and students. Through the NC Coastal Federation, we've painted dumpsters for oyster recycling initiatives, we have student artwork hanging in multiple local businesses, and we participate in many local craft fairs to help support the art program. On a personal level, my design was chosen in 2015 as the HMX-1 Christmas Card that I got to personally present to President Obama in the Oval Office.... a chance of a lifetime!"

We asked Erin how her education at UNC Charlotte prepared her for the career she has now. 

"Professor Joan Tweedy played a major role in why I love teaching art. I majored concentrating in ceramics, and Tweedy, like Ms. Lawson, really passed her passion for clay on to me. It made me a better artist and helped me to see that I can be like these amazing women and pass my passion on to others." She also talked about some of her favorite memories while in college. "I was on the small Co-Ed 49er Cheer team from 2001 to 2004 and would say many of my favorite memories came from being around that group of athletes. I was on the team that won the NCA National Cheerleading Championship in 2002. Getting that esteemed title was one of the best moments of UNC Charlotte for me!" She also has come back to campus recently for the winning nationals team that were just honored last basketball season on the 20th anniversary of its championship. "Campus has grown," she said, "but it still felt like home."

She also gave some great advice for current College of Arts + Architecture students. "Take risks! Try new things... without getting your hands on every material the Department of Art & Art History provides, you won't know where your passion lies."