While she was still at MICA, Deana Haggag '13 founded the Baltimore chapter of The Awesome Foundation philanthropic organization, and she was curator-in-residence at Gallery CA, a contemporary arts space devoted to showcasing artists from the Baltimore region and around the world. Recently named President and CEO of United States Artists, based in Chicago, she was previously director of Baltimore's Contemporary Museum, positions that she says her MICA experience prepared her for.
"Curatorial Practice at MICA was really revealing for me. It was a space where I was able to explore issues pertaining to contemporary art but also to social practice and community. I think the Fred Lazarus IV Center was great. Curatorial Practice closely resembles the real world in the sense that this is not a program where you are in any sense coddled. You are doing everything from budgeting to conceptualizing to implementing and producing. It's been very helpful as a transition from the program to the Contemporary. I feel Like I've already garnered so many of those skills."
Haggag, who received her B.A. in Art History and Philosophy from Rutgers University-Newark, worked with several contemporary arts spaces both in the United States and abroad before pursuing her graduate degree. At MICA, Haggag chose to complete her thesis work with Gallery CA located in the City Arts building which houses 69 artist live/work spaces. For her thesis, she established a series of administrative systems to better define the mission of the gallery for its residents and community.