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Faculty & Staff Spotlight: Lauren Cross, Ph.D., UNT

Faculty & Staff Spotlight: Lauren Cross, Ph.D., with her husband and two small children

Dr. Cross arrived at UNT World as an Art History adjunct professor in 2015 and is now teaching interdisciplinary courses that touch on critical and fascinating conversations in the art and design fields such as ethics, race, gender and identity, and more. She is truly a student's professor -- she loves to serve as a mentor and facilitate community engagement projects with her students. This wife and mom of two little ones (3 and 1) used time during the pandemic to connect her family with nature, but more than anything she's eager to reconnect with her students and colleagues on the Denton campus. Click on the button to learn more about Dr. Cross, including what she calls her "Denton legacy" that makes it an honor for her to work at UNT.


What is your favorite aspect of your job?
My favorite thing about my job is the students. I feel that I have such a great privilege to teach and to serve the students in my program and in the college, especially exposing them to interdisciplinary practices in our field. I enjoy mentoring and guiding students toward their perspective careers and making connections for them within industry and the local community.

What employee benefit or activity would you like to see added to UNT World?
Adding anything additional is really hard for me to think of because I feel that UNT World has provided so much in terms of virtual/on-campus opportunities and employee resources. I think because of the global pandemic, I have been appreciative of all efforts big and small. I am looking forward to getting back to campus and participating in on-campus events again.

What is your proudest work moment?
Facilitating community engagement projects with my students and colleagues like symposiums, lectures and exhibitions. Seeing my students in their element, particularly putting what they have learned in class into practice. This year I have been mentoring one of our college’s Undergraduate Research Fellows, Asia Youngs-Bailey, and I was so proud to see her present her research at UNT Scholars Day this April!

What is your proudest non-work moment?
I have a wealth of research and creative projects that I have had the opportunity to do this year; however, going camping with my husband and two toddlers (3 and 1) was such a proud highlight. During a time where we are challenged to explore new methods of social interaction, I have been most encouraged by these moments to get out in nature with my family.

What is a fact about you that may surprise your colleagues?
My family has what we call a Denton legacy: my mother, aunts and uncles all went to school at TWU and UNT. Because of them, it is a great honor to work here. I often feel that I am expanding on their important heritage and legacy. I even discovered great images of my uncles in the UNT Digital Collections!

Julie Dash's "Daughters of the Dust"
Place to visit?: East Texas
Charitable cause?: Center for Transforming Lives