Hixson-Lied Graduate Fellows

Hixson-Lied Graduate Fellows

These prestigious awards are given to a select number of new graduate students in each academic unit in the College. Funding for up to 32 fellowships over the next eight years has been allocated by the Hixson-Lied Advisory Board. Applications undergo rigorous evaluation by members of the graduate faculty, who look for evidence of outstanding past achievement and the potential for excellence in scholarship and creative activity at the highest level.

  • Awards range from $3,500 to $4,500 in addition to the graduate assistant stipends already provided by the University, creating nationally competitive stipends in the range of approximately $12,000 to $14,000.
  • Individual academic units set additional threshold admissions criteria beyond those that are normally required for graduate assistantships.
  • Awards continue for a maximum of three successive years, renewable annually based on performance and fulfillment of assigned duties. Directors recommend renewal based on rigorous assessment of the student's performance by the faculty.
  • Students must be pursuing one of the graduate degrees offered by the College.

For information about other fellowships (Departmental and University-wide), contact the respective department within the college and the Office of Graduate Studies.


Glenn Korff School of Music

Natalie Francel-Stone

Natalie Francel-Stone is a bassoonist currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in the Glenn Korff School of Music, under the instruction of Dr. Nathan Koch. Originally from Wichita, Kansas, Francel-Stone earned her Master of Music from Wichita State University, and her Bachelor of Music from Kansas State University.

As a Bobbie Bastian Musical Arts Fellow, a Mary Wurth Foundation Performance Arts Fellow, and a Lillian Graduate Performance Fellow, she has also served on the music faculty at Southwestern College and Union College.

An avid chamber performer, Francel-Stone was an integral member in the formation of the Valley Chamber Ensembles, a grant-winning Los Angeles based non-profit chamber ensemble, and was a member of artistic advisory board. Additionally, she has served as Principal Bassoon in the Newton Mid-Kansas Symphony Orchestra, Delano Chamber Players and Crown Uptown Music Theater Orchestra. She went on to participate in the formation of numerous chamber ensembles and chamber events in the Great Plains and Chicago areas, including Stix Bassoon Society, The Wichita Salon Series and the N*Cinq Wind Quintet.

Francel-Stone is a published author and gallery artist who has been featured in multiple national juried exhibitions and has served as an ongoing mentor artist for the National Arthritis Foundation, and she ardently strives to explore the complex relationship between a spectrum of arts disciplines to enhance the musical experience for both listener and performer. She believes in blurring the lines between audience and performer through interactive performances, unconventional settings and community outreach, to bring music out of the concert hall and to the people.

Sanda Mašić

Sanda Mašić earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the Faculty of Music Arts in Belgrade, Serbia, under professor Miomir Simonović and a Chamber Music Certificate at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she worked as a graduate teaching assistant under Dr. Jennifer Clippert.

She performed throughout Europe and the U.S. and appeared as a soloist with the UWM Symphony Orchestra and String Orchestra Orfej. As an orchestral musician, Mašić participated in many orchestral tours including a tour of Romania (Piatra Neamt), Italy (Trieste, Milan) and California (Los Angeles), US. Mašić was awarded by The Ministry of Youth and Sports of Republic of Serbia with the Dositeja diploma for special achievements on domestic and international competitions, she was a Laureate at the International Flute Festival in Valjevo 2016, a full scholarship award recipient for The Forum Flute Piano in Luxembourg 2018, the winner of UWM Concerto and Aria Competition 2019 and she participated in many masterclasses, workshops and concerts in Serbia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Italy, Germany, Luxembourg and the U.S.

Mašić is currently enrolled as a DMA student and graduate teaching assistant and fellow studying with Dr. John Bailey in the Glenn Korff School of Music.

Andrew Mell

Andrew Mell is a bassist, composer and music educator based in Lincoln, Nebraska, where he is currently working towards his doctorate in Jazz Performance.

Before recently moving to Lincoln, Mell spent the last seven years in Oregon, where he became a regular in the jazz and pop music scenes around the state. He performed at an array of different venues such as Jimmy Mac’s and the 1905 in Portland and the Jazz Station in Eugene, with several different local and touring groups.

Mell has also been an active private and classroom teacher in the Eugene and Salem communities. At the University of Oregon, he had many teaching roles such as leading a weekly jam session for jazz studies students, and leading composing clinics at the Oregon Jazz Festival. More recently, he served as the Bass and Combo instructor at Willamette University.

Aside from extensive work in the jazz and pop world, Mell has also been an active musician in the classical music scene in Eugene. While in school, he was the Principal Bassist of the University of Oregon Symphony, and has performed with other professional groups such as Orchestra Next.

David Pira

David Pira is a cellist from Bogotá, Colombia, currently pursuing a DMA in cello performance under the tutelage of Dr. Karen Becker in the Glenn Korff School of Music. He recently received his Master of Arts degree in cello from Ball State University where he studied with Dr. Peter B. Opie, and in 2017 he also received his Master of Music degree in Missouri State University, where he took lessons with Dr. Michael Murray.

Pira attended the National University of Colombia’s Conservatory of Music, where he received his undergraduate degree in cello performance. At the same time, he attended the MARGUZ Academy of Chamber Music and Cello Performance where he expanded the art of Chamber Music and the mastery of an effortless and natural cello technique with the guidance of Gabriel Guzmán and Adriana Marin, the latter former student of Christopher Bunting. As a teacher, Pira expanded his studio in Springfield, Missouri, coaching students from diverse ages and backgrounds, and in the STARS Foundation in Cabool, Missouri, where he contributed to the expansion of self-efficacy teachings and the enhancement of cello performance through Orchestral, Solo and Cello Chamber ensembles. 

As a performer, Pira participated in several orchestras such as the Colombian National Symphony, Springfield Symphony, Kokomo Symphony and the Muncie Symphony, performing in several international venues such as Barcelona, Lima, Pereira, and several areas from the United States. Additionally, he had the opportunity to participate in several masterclasses with Edgar Moreau, Ismar Gomez, Thomas Loewenheim, Laura Ospina, Crispin Campbell, Santiago Cañón, Álvaro Bitrán, Nicholas Finch, Phillip Borter, Aldo Mata, Michael Hell and Peter Schmid.

As an award recipient, Pira was a winner of the William T. White Scholarship in Missouri State, the Ball State Cello Graduate Assistantship, and recently he is the recipient of the GTA Assistantship and the Hixson-Lied Fellowship, where he will develop his duties for the Theory Area, Chamber Ensembles and Cello coachings. As a contribution to the Glenn Korff School of Music, Pira—with the assistance of Dr. Becker—designed a Cello Technique Handbook for the Cello studio with the purpose of support the mastering of technical skills through mindful performance.

Ian Rutherford

Ian Rutherford is currently attending the Glenn Korff School of Music as a DMA graduate teaching assistant in trombone. He completed his BME at Augustana University where he studied with Vance Shoemaker.

During his undergraduate studies, he was a featured soloist multiple times with the Northlanders Jazz Band and a winner of the Concerto/Aria Competition. Following his undergraduate studies, he was the Band Director at West Sioux Public Schools in Hawarden, Iowa, for two years. Rutherford completed his Masters degree in trombone performance at Nebraska in 2020.

Rutherford is an active freelance trombone player and clinician in the Midwest. He has performed with the Des Moines Symphony, Sioux City Symphony, Northern Iowa Symphony Orchestra and the University of Nebraska Faculty Brass Quintet. He has also performed with John Faddis, Chris Vadala, Second City, Mason Bates, Sasha Cooke, Evelyn Glennie, Michael Daugherty, Aaron Diehl, Mark O’Connor, Vince DiMartino and Keith Brion, among others. He has also performed in masterclasses for Mark Lawrence, Doug Yeo, Joseph Alessi and Marshall Gilkes.

Brandy Trucke

Brandy Trucke is an oboist who is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Musical Arts in oboe performance at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln under the instruction of Dr. William McMullen. She recently completed her Master of Music, also at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln where she has served, and is continuing to serve, as a graduate assistant in the music theory department, as well as teaching the oboe portion of the undergraduate music education program. Prior to her studies in Lincoln, she received a Bachelor of Arts degree with an emphasis in oboe, piano, and voice from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa.

Trucke has enjoyed an active freelance career during her time as a university student performing with various groups throughout the Midwest; most recently with the Nebraska Chamber Players and the Great Plains Wind Quintet. She also held the position of principal oboe with the Northwest Iowa Symphony Orchestra (NISO) for their 2017-2018 concert season. 

Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film

Paige Moeller

Paige Moeller is pursuing her Master of Fine Arts in Design and Technical Production in the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film. She is from Wisner, Nebraska. She received an A.A. from Northeast Community College and her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC).

Stephanie Schlosser

Stephanie Schlosser is pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Stage Design with an emphasis in Technical Production. She spent most of her life bouncing between Oregon, Guam and South Carolina before eventually settling in Greenville, South Carolina.

She has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and a master’s degree in theatre arts, both from Bob Jones University. Her background in criminal justice and security translates into an emphasis on safety in theater. She hopes one day to teach technical direction and possess a Certified Emergency Manager certification from the International Association of Emergency Managers. She is currently a member of the Event Safety Alliance. 

Taylor Walters-Riggsbee

Taylor Walters-Riggsbee is pursuing her MFA of Fine Arts in scenic design at the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in theatre design and technology at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in Spring of 2020.

While an undergraduate, Walters-Riggsbee designed and realized the sets of six shows, two of which were on the main stage at UNCW. She is excited to see where her journey as a Graduate Teaching Assistant will take her as she develops her skills.


School of Art, Art History & Design

Eddy Aldana

Portrait of Eddy Aldana

Eddy Leonel Aldana is a photographer and artist currently based out of Clarksburg, Maryland, and Lincoln, Nebraska. He is a first-generation Guatemalan-American and was born in 1995. He graduated from the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design at GWU in 2017 with his BFA in Fine Art Photography. Currently, he is an MFA candidate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. His photographic work is based around the memory of his late father, the acceptance and denial of his passing and the attachment to the memories he has of him. The ideas of home and family also play a big part in his photographic process. Most recently he is exploring the ideas of assimilation and “American-ness” and what it takes for someone to be considered “American.”

Allison Arkush

Portrait of Allison Arkush

Allison Arkush was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, until 2010 when she moved across the country to attend New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. While at NYU she studied studio art, psychology and the intersection of these two disciplines. Allison (and her dog Louise) recently relocated to Lincoln in July 2019 to begin her MFA in Ceramics.

Allison’s practice has included sculpture and pottery. For the past few years her focus has been on mixed-media, three-dimensional sculptural works combining ceramic elements with found objects, painting, soft sculpture, and collage. Experimenting with the effects and reactions between materials, sensations, and memories is central to her practice.

Madison Aunger

Maddie Aunger is a painter currently pursuing her Master of Fine Arts in Drawing and Painting at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Aunger grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, and completed her undergraduate studies at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. In December 2017, she earned a Bachelor of Science in art education (K-12) and a minor in art history, she also earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in drawing in May 2018.

Aunger’s paintings mirror her experience of light and color in the domestic places of her life and how she encounters them. She enjoys focusing on manipulation of saturated color to emphasize the feeling of the spaces she works from. Her most recent series of paintings is centered on the effects of light and time on a window in her home in Lincoln.

Dehmie Dehmlow

Dehmie Dehmlow

Dehmie Dehmlow is currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Ceramics from the School of Art, Art History & Design. Dehmie grew up in Denver, Colorado, in a big family. She is hardly without her dog, Hadlee, a trusted companion. She earned her BA in Ceramics and Pre-Medical Sciences from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado, in 2014. Dehmie worked as a caregiver for elderly and adults with disabilities while earning her bachelor’s degree and in the years since. From 2017–2018 Dehmie worked as a ceramics intern at Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Snowmass Village, Colorado. In 2018 she was selected as the 2019 Salad Days Artist in Residence at Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, Maine. After the summer in Maine making over 550 plates, Dehmie completed a Post-Baccalaureate program at Louisiana State University. She was selected as an Emerging Artist in 2019 at The Clay Studio in Philadelphia.

Her work has been in juried shows and exhibitions nationally. Dehmie enjoys being outside with Hadlee and observing the world around her. She collects chance scenes of what resonates with her in aged dwelling spaces and makes pots as configurations of layers, like paintings. Dehmie creates rhythm through the succession of shapes and color found in the profile, openings and surfaces of the pots. She creates a conversation between layers, edges, and endpoints of soft and hard geometry.

Hannah Demma

Hannah Demma

Hannah Demma is an avid outdoorswoman, outdoor educator and lifelong Nebraskan. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2017, with an emphasis on printmaking and drawing and is currently pursuing her Masters in Fine Art at her alma mater. Her mixed-media approach to art speaks to aspects of science and nature both familiar and strange, and mines the environment for inspiration, examining the intersection of the imaginative and the biological, of the creative and the empirical. Her process stirs the imagination and sparks excitement for exploration and adventure.

Since graduation, Hannah received the Kimmel Foundation Emerging Artist Award, and a Mayor’s Art Award in 2018. She completed an artist residency at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center in Nebraska City, and served as a visiting artist at Maxey Elementary School. Hannah’s passion for art education has taken her to Lincoln, Montana, where she spent a month leading the education programing for an outdoor sculpture park, Blackfoot Pathways Sculpture in the Wild. Hannah has served as coordinator for the Cedar Point Biological Station art program and Art Adventure camp, as well as worked as lead art instructor for the Arts are Basic summer camp at Culler Middle School.

In addition to teaching, Hannah has maintained a busy studio practice and exhibition schedule and looks forward to expanding her studio practice to include new mediums and collaborations within the college and the community at large.

Glenn Korff School of Music

Taeyeong Jung

Portrait of Taeyeong Jung

Taeyeong Jung is a clarinetist pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts at University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Originally from South Korea, he received his Bachelor of Music (B.M.) in clarinet performance at Truman State University and Master of Music (MM) at Illinois State University, where he was awarded Graduate Teaching Assistant position.

Jung was a member of the Honor Band of America and performed as the Principal Clarinet for Missouri All-Collegiate Band, Missouri All-Collegiate Orchestra, and Southeast Iowa Symphony. Keen to chamber music, he served as a Clarinet Chamber Music Coach at the Illinois State University and is a founding member of the new music ensemble Uncommon Practice and Woodwind Choir at Truman State University.

Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film

Nathan Alexander

Portrait of Nathan Alexander

Nathan alexander is a first-year graduate student in the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film with an emphasis in theatrical props and technical direction. He has been the props master for multiple shows in his undergrad career and he is thrilled to be the props master for “The Glass Menagerie” for the Nebraska Repertory Theatre this semester.

Hali Liles

Portrait of Hali Liles

Hali Liles is a Master of Fine Arts candidate in costume design at the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film. She received her B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from Culver-Stockton College in Canton, Missouri.

Liles began designing for Culver-Stockton’s theatre department in the third year of her undergraduate career. During that time, she received recognition for her designs at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, one of which was a design of The Addams Family Musical that was featured in the festival’s costume parade in 2018.

After graduation, she traveled back to southern Missouri to design for her community theatre, the Star Dramatic Company, that incited her passion for theatre so many years ago. Liles is excited to be furthering her education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and is very thankful for the opportunity to do so through her fellowship with Hixson-Lied.


School of Art, Art History & Design

Matthew Carlson

Matt Carlson

Matt Carlson is currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in sculpture from the School of Art, Art History & Design. Carlson is a native of San Diego California and spent his early 20s exploring various areas of the country before settling in North Carolina. Once there, he earned a B.F.A. in sculpture and ceramics from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and an A.A.S. in Photography from Randolph Community College.

For the past three years, Carlson has been an adjunct instructor at Randolph Community College, where he taught a variety of courses in the photography and graphic design departments. He was the primary instructor of the Youth Photography Collective, a grant-funded photography club, through the Center for Visual Artists in Greensboro, N.C., in which free or partially funded after-school enrichment programming is provided to local middle school students. Carlson was also a member of a The Forge Makerspace in Greensboro, N.C., where he helped create and facilitate the ceramics program.

Prior to his arrival in Lincoln, Carlson spent three and a half years working alongside people with autism and their families. Advocating for people living with disabilities and their families continues to be important to his life and is a driving force behind his work.

Taylor Sijan

Taylor Sijan

Taylor Sijan graduated Summa Kum Laude with her BFA in ceramics and metalsmithing at Bowling Green State University in 2016. After which, she spent two years in Wichita, Kansas, as a post-bacc student at Wichita State University, studying wood and soda-fired pottery. During her time in Wichita, she was Secretary of the WSU Ceramics Guild while also working private and public events at the Ulrich Museum of Art.

Sijan was active in the community as the Student Volunteer Coordinator for Empty Bowls Wichita, a large, nonprofit fundraiser to benefit those in need through the Kansas Food Bank. She has been recognized in juried exhibitions nationally and has received several notable awards, including the Athena Society Regional Artist Grant, the National 2016 NICHE Award for Student Ceramic Sculpture, and the Arts and Design Advocates Grant from Wichita State. Despite her current emphasis on functional, decorated pottery, she also enjoys small-scale metalsmithing, bookbinding, and drawing as other creative outlets. 

Amythest Warrington

Amythest Hultman Warrington was born in Iowa City, Iowa, but she was raised in a mobile military family growing up around the U.S. and Europe. She received her Bachelor of Fine Art in ceramics with minors in art history, and art from the University of Northern Iowa in 2014. While working on her bachelor’s, she studied abroad at the Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute for a semester in Jingdezhen, China, through West Virginia University’s China Program. Warrington is currently pursuing her Master of Fine Art emphasizing in ceramics at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Her mobile upbringing taught her that the details my differ from group to group but the essence or core experiences surrounding loss, empathy and belonging are a universal language connects us all. Warrington’s work explores the dichotomy between strength and frailty associated with these universal connectors through clay’s unique physical properties of malleability, recyclability and permanence once fired.  Her meticulously crafted beautiful objects draw you into serious and often taboo subjects to comfort those who need it, while challenging those that are comfortable and providing a way forward through art.

Glenn Korff School of Music

Patrick McNally

Patrick McNally

Patrick McNally is pursuing a doctorate of musical arts in voice under the instruction of Dr. Bill Shomos.

He came to Nebraska from Resonance Works, where he debuted as the brash Sargent Belcore in Resonance Works innovative L'elisir d'amore. Last season, he premiered the role of Ozzie in the famous Bernstein musical On the Town. McNally has a varied operatic repertoire, from Gianni Schicchi to John in Summer and Smoke. Drawing from his extensive performance experience, he is equally at home on the opera, musical theater and recital stage.

McNally has performed at houses across the United States as well as internationally. Recent highlights include appearances at Des Moines Metro Opera, Central City Opera, Sarasota Opera, The Natchez Festival of Music, Opera North, Dayton Opera, Tri-Cities Opera, Opera Louisiane, Bronx Opera, Hubbard Hall Opera, Opera New Jersey, ARE Opera, the Center for Contemporary Opera, New York Opera Exchange, The Long Island Opera, the Boston Lyric Opera, St. Petersburg Opera, and Die Eutiner Festspiele. He has also been a winner of multiple awards including the Richard F. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation. 

Jordan Redd

Jordan Redd

Originally from Fayetteville, North Carolina, Jordan Redd attended the University of North Carolina-Pembroke for two years before transferring to Southeast Missouri State University where he studied with Husker Horn Studio Alumnus Dr. Nicholas Kenney.

While studying at SEMO, Redd was named alternate winner of the 2015 Missouri state round of the MTNA Young Artist Competition and a finalist in the 2015 Southeast Missouri State University Concerto and Aria competition. In 2016 Redd graduated with a B.M. in horn performance and was awarded a Teaching Assistantship in the UNL Husker Horn Studio. Redd won the Nebraska state round of the MTNA Young Artist Competition two years in a row and was a National Finalist in 2018. Additionally, he was awarded first prize in the UNL Graduate Concerto Competition and performed the second movement of the Glière Horn Concerto with the UNL Symphony Orchestra.

Redd has performed with orchestras including the Paducah Symphony Orchestra (KY), the Jackson Symphony Orchestra (TN), the Omaha Symphony (NE), and was a soloist with the Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Tour in Sioux City, Iowa. In the summer of 2017 Redd performed at Festival Suoni d’Abruzzo in Guardiagrele, Italy and in 2017 and 2018 he served as Principal Horn of the FOOSA Philharmonia, which included performances in Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, California.

Redd earned the M.M. degree from UNL in May of 2018 and is pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Glenn Korff School of Music under the tutelage of Dr. Alan Mattingly.  As a Husker and Hixson-Lied Fellow, Redd is dedicated to representing Nebraska in Lincoln and across the globe. 

Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film

Emma Hoffbauer

Emma Hoffbauer

Emma Hoffbauer is pursuing her Master of Fine Arts in scenic design at the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film.  She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in design and technology for the theatre from the University of North Georgia as part of the Gainesville Theatre Alliance in December of 2017. Hoffbauer worked as a scenic artist at several professional theatres around the Atlanta area, and took her scenic design work to SETC for which she received an Honorable Mention in the design competition. Hoffbauer is very excited to use her opportunity as a graduate teaching assistant and Hixson-Lied Graduate Fellow to further her skills as a scenic designer and a theatre artist.

Marty Wolff

Marty Wolff is pursuing his Master of Fine Arts in scenic design at the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film. He received his Bachelor of Science in Education with an emphasis in Speech & Theatre in 2003, from Northwest Missouri State University. As an undergrad, Wolff won best scenic design for a second-stage and was awarded an Irene Ryan nomination for his portrayal of the Messenger in Medea.

Wolff taught high school theatre for seven years in both Kansas City and Omaha.  During those years, he designed and directed numerous theatrical performances. As Technical Director, he led North Kansas City High School to their first and only Blue Star Award for the lighting design in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

Wolff was the technical director for Gladstone Theater in the Park in 2005 and was cast in the Omaha Community Playhouse rendition of Fiddler on the Roof in 2009. Wolff plans to freelance design and teach at the university level upon graduation in the spring of 2021.