When I came to the School in 1966, we were simply the Speech School, an umbrella that covered a range of speech, theatre and media courses. Like most everyone else, I taught General Speech plus Creative Drama and whatever else was needed from semester to semester. Later we became The School of Communication Arts end Sciences and most of us speech/theatre types became very involved in developing (and teaching) courses in Interpersonal communication. Over the years that I remained in the School, I taught a wide range of courses, many of them required for our own education majors end elementary majors who opted for either the Creative Arts Minor or the Integrated Language Arts Minor. I was the first Director of the Integrated Language Arts Minor, an honors program which was a prototype for similar programs across the country. Most of us taught a plethora of courses in nearly every area of the School (In addition to theatre courses, I also taught public speaking, Interpersonal, courses in the arts minor and the language arts minor, methods, Mass media and the Child, etc.) I wrote several books in the 'drama in education' field and regularly worked with state, national and international associations in developing materials for use at all levels, particularly theatre education resource materials for K- 12 teachers. I have written and directed several original plays for young audiences, and children's literature for storytelling and dramatization. I am currently finishing a book of poetry for K-middle school classroom use. I believe I have presented in most major cities in the US (only kidding!) and such fascinating foreign venues as France, England, Scotland and Ireland, the Peoples Republic of China, Australia and Canada.
In 1993, I moved to the School of Theatre In the College of Fine Arts to serve as Director of Theatre Education. This allowed me to continue teaching Drama in Education courses, and to again teach and direct a touring company that created original theatre for elementary and middle school audiences. I also did my stint of teaching Introduction to Theatre, taught the methods course end Storytelling.
I retired January 1, 1997 as Professor Emerita of Theatre and as Professor Emerita of Communication. (I'm still waiting for TIAA-CREF to note that I am emerita from TWO Schools and colleges and, therefore should be receiving a double pension!) Since retiring, I have continued to be involved in professional conferences, workshops, etc. providing the venue is something wonderfully inviting. I have also become a professional 'bum,' particularly as I divide my time between Kalamazoo, Athens, Georgia, and Elderhostels. During the gardening months, I have either Michigan dirt-stained hands or nails permanently orange from Georgia clay. I love being in Kalamazoo for the theatre season, however, and my current stint on the Emeriti Council keeps me in touch with many friends and colleagues.