Columbus College of Art & Design welcomes a new faculty cohort, expands capacity for human-centered design education

Systems-change investment from JPMorgan Chase supports CCAD curriculum in campus classrooms and at Columbus-based equity design institute

COLUMBUS, Ohio—Columbus College of Art & Design welcomes nine new full-time faculty members as the college begins the 2023–2024 academic year. New faculty members will lead social practice and human-centered design curriculum both on campus and in the Columbus community, instruct CCAD’s inaugural class for the Master of Professional Studies in User Experience (UX) Design, and expand capacity across CCAD’s design, entertainment, and visual art disciplines. In addition to art and design, areas of new faculty expertise include sustainability, social justice, economic inequity, and health and wellness. 

“The new cohort expands a CCAD faculty body actively engaged in teaching practices rooted in collaboration, innovation, equity, and agility,” said Julie Taggart, provost. “The selection of these faculty reflects CCAD’s mission to prepare students for careers of the future through contemporary art and design practice.”

New faculty members bring expertise in cross-discipline, human-centered design education, intended to teach students how to create products, services, and experiences that are equitable, inclusive, and accessible. Faculty members will also bring additional support to CCAD’s largest major, Animation, expand UX design curriculum, and drive the college’s design for social practice coursework, which teaches students to think creatively about how art and design can play a role in solving economic, environmental, and cultural issues around the world. 

With the support of a systems-change investment from JPMorgan Chase, the new cohort is part of an institutional effort to develop a more diverse faculty body that better represents CCAD’s students. “As the largest and most diverse cohort the college has ever hired, these new faculty members are a direct reflection of CCAD’s commitment to intentional inclusivity and making space for a multiplicity of voices,” said Dr. Melanie Corn, president. “I am thrilled to welcome these dynamic and brilliant artists, designers, and scholars into our faculty.”

Members of the new cohort will also support curriculum development and instruction at the new Women of Color Equity Design Institute, launched last fall through a $1.5 million systems-change investment from JPMorgan Chase and headquartered at Zora’s House. The curriculum will embed designing for equity into the core of the Columbus community’s economic development efforts, removing barriers to economic success and ensuring women of color are at the table to shape solutions for the future.

“JPMorgan Chase is proud to partner with CCAD, along with Zora’s House and The Women’s Fund of Central Ohio on a path toward creative and inclusive solutions for Ohio communities,” said Corrine Burger, Columbus location leader, JPMorgan Chase. “This work will ensure women of color are actively engaged in creating solutions, programs, and policies to help strengthen Ohio communities and create a more inclusive economy for all.”

The nine new full-time CCAD faculty members are:

  • David Butler, assistant professor, Illustration. A 2006 CCAD alum, Butler most recently served as the head of Illustration at Art Academy of Cincinnati and will teach in CCAD’s Illustration program.
  • Leah Coleman, assistant professor, Animation. Coleman, formerly a CCAD College Preview instructor, will teach in CCAD’s Animation program.
  • Eunice Delaquis, associate professor, graphic & experience design. Delaquis will move from adjunct to full-time faculty at CCAD and will teach graphic and experience design courses across multiple programs. 
  • Yara Elfouly, visiting faculty and AICAD Fellow, Animation. Elfouly is an Ignatz award nominee and earned an MFA in Experimental Animation at California Institute of the Arts. She will teach in CCAD’s Animation program.
  • Gweny Jin, assistant professor, environmental design & sustainability. Jin brings an extensive, diverse research background from her time at Rhode Island School for Design, University of Hong Kong, and Pratt Institute. Jin will teach across multiple CCAD design programs, with a focus on sustainability. 
  • Dr. Ramya Ravisankar, assistant professor, design for social practice. Ravisankar completed a PhD in Arts Administration, Education and Policy with a specialization in Arts Education from The Ohio State University and will use her versatile skill set to teach across multiple programs.
  • Siavash Tohidi, associate professor, experience design. Tohidi comes to CCAD from the University of Kentucky’s School of Art and Visual Studies, where he did significant grant-funded work in digital modeling for the medical field, and will teach experience design courses in multiple programs. 
  • Em Yue, visiting faculty and AICAD Fellow, Animation. Yue earned  an MFA in Animation at California Institute of the Arts and, at CCAD, will teach animation, with an emphasis on experimental animation.
  • Rebecca Zomchek, associate dean, Entertainment Design. Zomchek returns to CCAD from the Illustration department of Ringling College of Art & Design, and will lead CCAD’s Animation, Game Art & Design, Comics & Narrative Practice, and Illustration programs.

About Columbus College of Art & DesignColumbus College of Art & Design teaches undergraduate and graduate students in the midst of a thriving creative community in Columbus, Ohio. Founded in 1879, CCAD is one of the oldest private, nonprofit art and design colleges in the United States. CCAD offers 11 BFA programs, two Master of Professional Studies programs (Retail Design and User Experience Design), and a Master of Fine Arts that produce graduates equipped to shape culture and business at the highest level. For more information, visit