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CFA Senior Selected as Garnet & Gold Scholar

Published December 12, 2022

Laura poses in a white dress in front of fall foliage.Florida State University senior Laura Pellini has been inducted into the prestigious Garnet & Gold Scholar Society. Graduating this fall with a BA in Art, she is one of only 35 students to receive this honor this fall.

Pellini, a native of Panama, started her career as a student at Florida State University’s Panama City, Panama campus. She was able to come to Tallahassee through the University’s 2+2 Scholarship program. Here, she became highly involved and focused on the arts.

“I started painting in high school and realized that I really wanted to pursue that,” she explained, “but the Panama Campus is pretty small and we didn’t have a lot of art classes. So, I did all my liberal education credits there and was able to take advanced art classes once I got here to Tallahassee.”

Established in 2010, the Garnet & Gold Scholar Society facilitates student involvement and recognizes undergraduate students who excel within and beyond the classroom in at least three of five areas: international experience, internship, leadership, research and service.

This is not the first honor for this outstanding young artist and scholar. In Spring 2022, Pellini won the Bess H. Ward Thesis Award for her thesis, “Where are the women? A critical evaluation of female representation in science fiction, horror and action film posters,” exploring the representation of female actors in the marketing of movie posters during third-wave feminism. Pellini is one of fewer than one percent of graduating students this semester to complete an honors thesis in the Honors in the Major Program.

Three re-imagined movie posters prominently feature female actors.

As part of her honors thesis, Pellini re-imagined these movie posters to prominently feature female characters.

Read more about Pellini’s award-winning Thesis

“Laura has excelled in our BA program as an artist who is sophisticated in her artwork and insightful in her critical thinking,” said Department of Art BA director and assistant teaching professor Elizabeth Di Donna, who directed Pellini’s thesis. “She took on an ambitious honors thesis project, and her committee was quite impressed with the outcome. Laura continues to demonstrate that she is wholly committed to artistic and intellectual labor, and I am excited to see what she does next!”

Pellini feels that the flexible nature of the BA Art program allowed her to take full advantage of all that FSU had to offer.

“The flexibility of the BA program allowed me to do a little bit of everything,” she said. “I was able to explore painting, printmaking and photography, combine those interests with graphic design, and get a minor in general business. I feel like I’m graduating with a very diverse background that is suited a wide variety of opportunities.”

During her time at FSU, Pellini was also involved with the Student Life Cinema, where she served as advertising director, managing advertising for the SLC and serving as a mentor to other students interested in graphic design.

Most recently, she has held a part-time job with Strozier Library as a graphic designer. After graduation, she will be transitioning into a full-time position as a graphic design specialist with the library.

Learn more about FSU’s Department of Art at

Explore the Honors Program at