The Betty Laird Perry Student Art Collection was established in support of FIU's Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Fine Arts studio programs. The Award provides a unique opportunity for the Frost Art Museum to collect outstanding student works that enhance the museum’s collection as well as the University’s public spaces. The collection holds numerous works by FIU students obtained through purchase awards since 1980. Many of the graduates have gone on to become renowned figures in the contemporary arts scene, earning prestigious awards and fellowships including those from the NEA, MacArthur, and Guggenheim.
Mrs. Betty Laird Perry, wife of Florida International University’s founding President, the late Charles Perry, continues to have an unwavering commitment to the development and expansion of the collection of student work. Mrs. Perry remarks on her the award, “Chuck and I decided to begin the Student Art Awards… not only because art was my passion, but also because we thought it would represent a historical retrospective of the development of student art at FIU and would become a juried permanent collection of student art representing the best from the University throughout the years. My long-time dream is to see this complete collection exhibited sometime in the future at the new Frost Art Museum.” To ensure this dream becomes a reality, Mrs. Perry has made a very generous donation to the new Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum Building Fund and will have a gallery named in her honor dedicated to student, faculty, and alumni exhibitions.