Loyola University Chicago

Theatre

Department of Fine and Performing Arts

Open Governance

The Theatre faculty hold a summer retreat, and monthly meetings throughout the academic year to conduct the business of the program. They also meet typically twice a semester as part of the DFPA Faculty. Theatre faculty members serve on committees at both the Theatre and DFPA levels. If you have an issue you would like to bring to the faculty at large or to a relevant committee please contact the Director of Theatre, Lee Keenan: lkeenan@luc.edu.

2020/2021 THTR Academic Committees

 - draft structure revised August 4, 2020

 

The Theatre Program will reconfigure its past versions of a Loyola Theatre Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee so that the committee works in a more systematized, robust, ongoing way. The committee will be composed of current students, faculty, and staff. We will determine the most just and equitable way of composing this reconstituted committee in consultation with other campus offices. This committee will be able to request time to bring a question or concern to a faculty meeting. The committee will evolve its focus as it collectively sees fit, but we anticipate that likely areas of focus will include but not be limited to:

  • Making ongoing recommendations on how we can live the values of our existing Loyola Theatre program DEI statement through our actions.
  • Conducting ongoing review and revision of the existing Loyola Theatre program DEI statement, subject to approval by the Loyola theatre faculty and staff.
  • Curating and developing facilitated discussions or other programming in support of the department’s DEI goals.
  • Selecting three students to be representatives for the Main Stage Season Selection Committee (and preparing alternates as needed).
  • Selecting student representatives to provide feedback during faculty and staff searches.
  • Clarifying procedures for students, staff, or faculty to make DEI-relevant suggestions for future programming or aspects of program practices.
  • Exploring how to promote awareness and continuing education about anti-racist vocabularies and social justice perspectives from contexts outside the U.S. to avoid centering exclusively U.S.-based perspectives and vocabularies.
  • Supporting the Director of Theatre in ensuring that students, staff, and faculty are provided in multiple venues with information about the range of channels available for communicating concerns or filing grievances, at the departmental level and at the university level.
  • Communicating that alumni are always welcome to approach the committee with questions, suggestions, or structural concerns. Clear pathways to do so will be highlighted. In addition, via social media, the DEI committee will formally invite alumni to join them for at least one committee meeting annually.

We will create a Loyola Theatre Standards and Practices Committee starting Fall 2020. This committee’s first tasks will include but not be limited to:

  • Creating guidelines, templates for, and examples of production-specific casting philosophy statements.
  • Proposing, if the committee deems advisable, a program-wide casting philosophy statement that identifies base principles or approaches.
  • Reviewing the current and emerging standards and scholarship around Intimacy Coordination in the industry (and in academic associations such as the Association for Theatre in Higher Education) to create program guidelines for:
    • Thresholds for when a project would need an intimacy coordinator.
    • How to handle intimacy in the classroom.
    • Recommended standard language for consent (such as, for example, the description of consent as “freely given, reversible, informed, and specific”)
    • Incorporation of trauma-informed pedagogy around intimacy.
  • Reviewing the current and emerging standards and scholarship about fight choreography (a.k.a. violence design) in the industry (and in academic bodies such as the Association for Theatre in Higher Education) to create program guidelines for:
    • Thresholds for when a production would need a fight choreographer to handle violence safely and responsibly.
    • How to handle fight choreography in the classroom.
    • Questions about which forms of training and certification should be valued when hiring a fight choreographer or if a performance faculty member were to pursue continuing education in fight choreography.
    • Advice on incorporation of trauma-informed pedagogy around staged violence.
  • Reviewing all existing production policies with an emphasis on the need for practices that are anti-racist, trauma-informed, anti-oppressive, transparent, and reflective of other values that enhance accessibility, diversity, equity, and inclusion.

 

It is the hope of the Theatre Program that our community of alumni might join us in support of the action items above and our growth to come. Depending on interest and availability from alumni, we look forward to hosting the creation of this volunteer committee, which would be composed entirely of alumni and meet, minimally, semiannually. We recognize the valuable perspectives our alumni hold on 1) theatre industries, 2) adjacent entertainment industries such as voiceover, film, television, and live events, and 3) the application of a theatre degree to other fields. We hope this committee could help facilitate insightful, ongoing two-way alumni communication with the Director of Theatre and engage in support of our anti-racism action plan, values, and growth.

Second Stage Committee creates a process for students to submit proposals for Second Stage undergraduate research projects, evaluates those proposals, and selects a projects for the upcoming semester. This committee’s principle tasks:

  • Mentor students as they prepare proposals.
  • Holds a series of meetings to select projects from those proposed.
  • Phase one of the selection process will communicate with students in writing, some proposals may be declined at this time.
  • During phase two the process selected project leaders will be invited to meet with the committee to discuss their proposal. Committee members will need to provide availability to the committee chair for blocks of time to schedule these interviews.
  • Committee will work to update template “models” of projects to inspire a diverse array of proposals.
  • During academic year 20/21 SSC will work to create an FAQ for their process that to answer common questions and articulate their decision making rubric.
  • Meet with selected student leaders to work out details of scope, learning objectives, and support for projects and provide summary scope documents to the Production Office.
  • Convene as needed to manage changes in scope and learning outcomes of projects.
  • Mentor participation in Undergraduate Research Symposium.
  • Attend student project shares and provide feedback to students during their reflection phase.

Principal tasks:

  • Peer learning collaboration in regards to online instruction of performance courses.
  • Review of the curriculum of performance electives with an eye to creating a consistent course rotation and classes that fill reliably.
  • Onboarding new performance faculty.
  • Capturing institutional memory from retiring faculty member.

This possible new committee would have the following proposed mission: To explore ways the Theatre Program could further augment its resources in pursuit of growth, excellence, increased scholarships, and the goals outlined in our Anti-Racism Action Plan. Committee would not be called to meet until the faculty have settled into the adaptation to online courses and production. Principal tasks:

  • pursuit of grants as an arts organization
  • support of peers in research grant proposals
  • create fundraising strategies
  • develop a deeper alumni giving program and partner with University wide development offices
  • campaign for new recurring scholarships
  • explore growing existing scholarship funds into endowments
  • pursue internal institutional partnerships,
  • connect to internal university initiatives
  • pursue external institutional partnerships

This committee’s duties will include but not be limited to:

  • Collaborating with other offices within the university on sustainable and responsible ways to cultivate a program whose student body is as reflective as possible of the diversity of Chicago, the U.S., and the world at large.
  • Exploring how to adapt our recent standard recruitment efforts to the COVID-19 era.
  • Creating a written record of recruitment strategies and tactics for the post COVID-19 era.
  • Refreshing our relationship with Senn High School.
  • Explore was of engaging with Arrupe College students early in their careers.
  • Exploring how the DPFA-wide Teaching Artist Minor can be a catalyst for increasing and diversifying relationships with Chicago schools and other institutions
  • Developing strategies aimed at recruiting (and supporting the matriculation of) BIPOC students, regionally, nationally, and internationally.
  • Developing recruitment strategies that are informed by the insights of disability rights advocates and scholars in disability studies.
  • Developing strategies for retention of and support for BIPOC students.
  • Developing strategies aimed at BIPOC recruiting from within the University student population to the major, minors, and productions.
  • Start to develop an international student recruitment and retention strategy for after the pandemic.

 

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