New theater major creates opportunities for students
Friday, September 14, 2007
By Britt Barrientez
Christian University offers students multiple areas of emphasis within
the department of communication. The school now gives students the
opportunity to major in theater.
Oklahoma Christian added the Bachelor of Science in Theater Performance in the fall of 2005.
“Working with the Communication Department Chairman, Dr. Larry
Jurney, he and I began the new degree process by developing the
curriculum then submitting the new major to the Academic Affairs
Committee and from thence to the entire faculty, who must approve all
new majors,” Professor Phil Reagan said.
Before the change, students were restricted to a degree such as
Bachelor of Arts in Communication with an emphasis in theater or a
Bachelor of Science Education in Communication Studies with an emphasis
The goal of the degree is to prepare students for graduate studies
by providing them with adequate education in the performance, dramatic
literature, history, stage movement, design and directing portions of
The addition made five new classes available to students:
introduction to play production, theater history, stage movement,
acting II and theater design. Oklahoma Christian also brought in two
new professors to teach these classes.
“In the Fall of 2005, adjunct professor Barbara Berard began
teaching the new stage movement class,” Reagan said. “This fall, Dr.
Barrett Huddleston, professor of theater, was hired to teach theatre
history and other theater and communication classes.”
The growth of faculty has been followed by the growth of students
who have chosen to major in theater. Huddleston said the number of
students has gone from five students last year to 16 students this
“The new major allows our students to compete against students from
undergraduate schools with theater majors for placement in theater
graduate programs,” Reagan said. “We also hope to enter the American
College Theater Festival, the national competition among college
“The new degree provides even more academic and performance training
than before in a Christian environment,” Reagan said. “The new degree
will provide more opportunities for our students to prepare themselves
for a career in the performing arts.”
“Professors believe the addition of these classes to a prominent
theater program will improve students’ credibility in furthering their