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    Dr. Sharon Latchaw Hirsh

    13th College President

    President Hirsh is an internationally recognized scholar of turn of the century art in Western Europe. She has served as a visiting fellow at numerous institutions including the Art Institute of Chicago and the National Gallery of Art, as a visiting curator at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and at the Schweizerisch Institute fur Kunstwissenschaft in Zurich, and as a visiting Senior Fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies in the Visual Arts.

    She is the author of numerous scholarly articles and exhibition catalogues. In 2004, Dr. Hirsh's fifth book, Symbolism and Modern Urban Society was published by Cambridge University Press.

    Since becoming President of Rosemont College in 2005, Dr. Hirsh's leadership has allowed the College to successfully transition to co-education, develop new graduate degree programs, and establish new online degrees.

    She has also been responsible for successful completion of the College's $40 million fundraising Campaign which has helped to provide academic enhancements, scholarship funds, and enhancements to Rosemont's campus through the construction of the new Raven's Athletic Complex, the development of the Library Information Commons, the purchase and renovation of Gracemere Honors House, the renovation of Cardinal Hall into a modern dining facility and café, the renovation of the Rotwitt Theater of McShain Performing Arts Center, and the current construction of the College’s 73,000 square foot Community Center, due to open in the fall of 2019.

    During the summer of 2015, Dr. Hirsh launched Our Tuition Promise, a bold step taken to make a Rosemont College education affordable by reducing tuition 43% and room and board 14% for the 2016-2017 academic year. This courageous action resulted in an increase in applications to the College by 64% and a 30% increase in deposited students for Fall 2016.

    Many local and national publications carried the story and the increase exposure to the College was instrumental in securing the largest entering class in the school’s history. In addition, the academic profile of the students entering Rosemont has increased year-over-year since the launch of Our Tuition Promise.

    Educational Background

    • PhD, History of Art, 1974
      • Dissertation: 19th and 20th Century European Art 
      • University of Pittsburgh
    •  MA, History of Art, 1971
      • Fields: European Art, Art and Literature
      • Thesis: Carlo Carra’s Futurist Canvas, The Swimmers
      • University of Pittsburgh
    • BA, History of Art and Studio Art, 1970
      • Graduated Cum Laude
      • Rosemont College

    Fellowships and Appointments

    • Visiting Scholar, University of Colorado at Boulder, 2006
    • Visiting Scholar Program, Art Institute of Chicago, 2004-2005
    • Ailsa Bruce Mellon Visiting Senior Fellow, Center for Advanced Studies in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1998

    Selected Publications


    • Symbolism and Modern Urban Society. Cambridge University Press, 2004.

    • Art, Culture, and National Identity in Fin-de-Siècle Europe. ed. by Sharon Hirsh and Michelle Facos. Introduction and chapter on “Swiss Art and National Identity at the Turn of the Century.” Cambridge University Press, 2003.

     Exhibition Catalogues

    • Grace Hartigan. Painting Art History. The Trout Gallery, 2003. Distributed by University of Washington Press, 2003.

    • Enduring Objects: Jim Dine Prints (Exhibition, curated for The Trout Gallery, March - April 2002). Brochure, published by Dickinson College, 2002.

    • Curator’s Choice: 19th- and 20-Century Prints from the Denker Collection. (Exhibition, curated for The Trout Gallery, Summer 2000). Brochure, published by Dickinson College, 2000.

    Chapters in Books

    • Ferdinand Hodler: View to Infinity. ed. by Jill Lloyd and Ulf Kuster. Chapter: “Ferdinand Hodler’s Late Self-Portraits”. Neue Galerie, 2012.

    • Myths and Mysteries: Symbolism and Swiss Artists. Ed. by Valentina Anker. Chapter: “The Joyous Body: Dance in the work of Ferdinand Hodler”. Somogy Art, 2013.

    • Disease, Decadence, and Regeneration: Metaphorical Images in Art and Popular Culture. ed. by Laurinda Dixon. Chapter: “Codes of Consumption: Tuberculosis and Body Image at the Fin-de-Siècle.” University of Delaware Press, 2004.


    • Ferdinand Hodler and the Salon de la Rose+Croix,” Ferdinand Hodler. Exhibition catalogue. Kunstmuseum Bern , 2008.
    • “ Ferdinand Holder’s Truth: A Note on Dating,” in Bulletin of the Art Institute of Chicago, December, 2005.
    • “The House as Sanctuary: Belgian Symbolist Interiors,” in Historic House Museums as Witnesses of National and Local Identities. ed. by Rosanna Pavoni. Acts of the third annual DEMHIST Conference, Amsterdam, 2002. International Council on Museums, 2003.
    • “Switzerland’s Vacant Mountains: Alpinism and the Summit View,” in Approaching a New Millennium: Lessons from the Past -- Prospects for the Future (Proceedings to the ISSEI Conference). Cambridge, MA: M.I.T. Press, 2001.
    • “The Symbolist City: New Perspectives on Late-Nineteenth-Century Urban Malaise,” in Center 19, Washington, D.C.: Center for Advanced Studies in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art, 1999.

     Selected Symposia/Lecture Presentations

    • “Symbolism and the City,” Symposium for the exhibition Dreams of Nature: Symbolism

      from Van Gogh to Kandinsky. Scottish National Gallery, July 2014.

    • “The Unveiling of Hodler’s Truth,” Invited lecture, The Art Institute of Chicago, October, 2005.

    • “The Independent, Isolated, Yet Nicely-Accessible ‘Playground of the Modern World’: Hodler and Swiss National Identity Around 1900,” Symposium: “Paris? Vienna? Milan? Swiss Painting and Cosmopolitan Europe, 1880-1920” Meadows Museum, Dallas, Texas, January 2005.

    • “The Symbolist Artist in 1900: Degeneracy Acknowledged or Genius Proclaimed?”  Annual Meeting of the College Art Association, Seattle, Washington, February 2004.

    • “The House as Sanctuary: Modernism’s Everyday Shrine,” Modernist Studies Association annual Meeting, Birmingham, U.K., September 2003.

    Selected Professional Activities

    • Presidents’ Council, Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Vice Chair, Board of Advisors, African Sisters Education Collective.

    • Member, Executive Committee, Colonial States Athletic Conference

    • Member, Presidents’ Council, NCAA (national board for Division III)

    • Member, President’s Advisory Board, Lankenau Hospital

    • Member, Board of Trustees, Rosemont College 2000 - 2005 (Chair, Trustee Committee on Academic Affairs)