Southwestern First

No matter the distance, we are united because of Southwestern first and foremost — each of us is drawn to the University’s mission, purpose, and core values.

There is much about Southwestern to celebrate, from our history as the first university in Texas to holding the first homecoming across the country. And over the course of this homecoming weekend, we looked to Southwestern’s future with the inauguration of President Trombley.

Norma Miller Clark’s ’97, P’00 painting, “Shaping the Future,” is a uniquely Southwestern piece, commemorating the diverse experiences that Southwestern offers. 

“Shaping the Future,” Norma Miller Clark “Shaping the Future,” Norma Miller Clark

This artwork was throughout our campus communications regarding President Trombley’s Inauguration and other events which took place October 15–17, 2021, which included the Roy & Margaret Shilling Lecture, the President’s Appreciation Celebration (a dinner for President’s Council and 1840 Society donors), and Homecoming.

Norma Miller Clark ’97, P’00

Norma Miller Clark Norma Miller ClarkNorma Miller Clark is a first-generation college student who began her studies at Southwestern in studio art in the fall 1970. She left in spring 1972 to work and raise her family, but she returned to the university as a nontraditional student in 1992 to complete her degree five years later. After graduating from SU, she earned her master of fine arts from Vermont College of Norwich University in 2000. She specializes in abstract art and has exhibited her work in Georgetown, Austin, Dallas, and Atlanta. Clark’s father, Sammie Miller, was a beloved member of the Southwestern staff for 40 years, working in the Commons dining hall. Clark’s daughter, Cecilly Clark ’00, is also a graduate of Southwestern University.

Norma’s Artist Statement

I am an abstract artist whose paintings are expressive, intuitive and spontaneous. My abstractions stem from various sources and document discoveries made during my investigations. I have no perceived idea for the final imagery and I respond to the mark making done on the canvas, each step in the evolution of a painting reveals the next step in the process of my exploration.

Process is a key part of my work and my objective is to create paintings that are visually engaging, contain ambiguities of space, color, form and chaos. My paintings are personal and are reflections of a range of internal emotions and complexities of life.

Creating art for me is to look beyond what can visually be seen to communicate a powerful image on canvas that reveals more than what is immediately apparent, however my art is not meant to relay a personal philosophy, political, social or cultural commentary of the world.

Dedication Ceremony

“Shaping the Future” was officially dedicated on Saturday, October 16, 2021, at 5:30 p.m. in the Red & Charline McCombs Campus Center, Mabee Commons.

Event Guide

Presidential Inauguration

The Inauguration of Laura Skandera Trombley as the 16th President of Southwestern University