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Job Summary

UMetc Program Overview:

U-M Educational Theatre Company (UMetc) uses a variety of dramatic approaches to educate undergraduate students about issues relevant to the campus experience. The integration of student actors throughout the creative process allows the company to produce a body of work grounded in authentic voice, one that resonates deeply with audience members. UMetc develops both presentational and interactive theatre pieces, each carefully crafted to address the needs of the audience. In the interactive performances, often presented in a classroom setting or in residence halls students are given the opportunity to be more than mere observers. Instead, audience members are encouraged to engage as active participants, problem solving and exploring strategies along with the actors in role.

UMetc’s use of theatre as a teaching tool provides real benefits for both audience members and performers. From an audience perspective, content comes alive in a way that is both entertaining and significant UMetc’s work allows audience members to connect with content in a deeper way, activating multiple neural systems, connecting emotionally to their fellow students and safely unpacking topics that students might otherwise consider embarrassing or taboo. The experience of witnessing peers onstage as they deal with topics like mental illness, sexual assault, alcoholism and inclusive language can open the door for student audience members to seek out campus resources without feeling alone in their struggles. UMetc also uses theatre as a discussion tool, allowing the community to process topics that may be heated or emotional by exploring multiple viewpoints onstage. Theatre allows the campus community to explore conflict in a productive space; thus serving as a form of dialogue of the community.

Job Summary

Reporting to the offices of New Student Programs and Student Life, the Educational Theatre Director’s primary responsibilities include providing Artistic Direction for the company through direction and coordination of undergraduate students as actors. Major program components include first-year summer orientation programs and fall semester bystander intervention workshops delivered to all first-year students, which serve to educate and inform students about a variety of social, academic, and personal issues typically encountered during the college years.

The Program Director will also be responsible for developing new partnerships that situate UMetc as a consultation and training resource to enhance the skills and efficacy of peer facilitators across campus. This will include working alongside departments, units, and programs to strengthen their peer facilitation training through the use of and training on educational theater techniques. The Educational Theatre Director will oversee a variety of administrative tasks and supervises a full time UMetc Program Coordinator.

Responsibilities*

Orientation Performances: 50%

The Orientation productions serve as an introduction to various campus services and offices for incoming students.  These programs consist of performances for Freshman Orientation (June-August), Transfer Orientation (May-August and December), International Orientation (August) and the Collaboration at Michigan workshop (June-August).  Collaboration at Michigan is a workshop which uses interactive theatre to help students prepare to work in Diverse teams and groups.

  • Recruit, select, train, supervise and evaluate, actors, music director, stage managers and peer facilitators
  • Coordinate script development and editing for all shows
  • Serve as primary Director for Freshman Orientation Show, International Orientation Show and Collaboration at Michigan Workshop
  • Oversee direction of Transfer Orientation Shows
  • Attend regular Orientation Planning meetings with ONSP
  • Develop and administer workshops for Orientation Leaders in public speaking and monologue writing.

 

Peer Facilitation Training and Consultation 20%:

In service of our collective Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts this role will focus on strengthening peer facilitator training within programs designed to build students’ awareness, knowledge, skills, and actions associated with building inclusive campus communities. 

  • Develop and lead a team that brings together effective practices in peer facilitator training and shares assessment outcomes and teaching methods. Identify opportunities to partner with departments, units, and programs across Student Life to enhance student leadership and peer facilitation trainings through the incorporation of interactive theater and the development of public speaking and stage presences skills.
  • In partnership, enhance the current Student Life Peer Facilitation Training in order to centralize key components,  bring together students from across content areas, and develop a pool of peer facilitators to engage in as needed programming to support DEI efforts.Serve in a consultative role for staff and students developing peer facilitation training content throughout the division.
  • Ensure that appropriate success metrics, including Key Performance Indicators (KPI's)?, participation, satisfaction, and comprehensive student and/or staff learning outcomes are gathered, analyzed, reported, and utilized for data-informed decision-making and continuous improvement.

 

Change it Up! Bystander Intervention Training:  20%

The Change It Up! workshop uses interactive theatre content, a bystander intervention model and is delivered to students, staff, and faculty. This is a peer delivered workshop at each level and serves as a core training effort in our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion strategic plan. Change it Up! with Undergrads is a required program for all incoming students in their fall semester and is facilitated by undergraduate and graduate students Change it Up! also holds graduate sessions in partnership with schools and colleges throughout the year and serves as a requestable training for staff and faculty through central Human Resources Learning and Professional Development. Change it Up related duties include but are not limited to:

  • Serve in in a leadership capacity for all Change it Up! programming including curriculum development, peer facilitator training and staff and faculty workshop facilitation.
  • Provide script updates for undergraduate, graduate, and Staff/Faculty Change it Up! workshops as needed.
  • Train ETC actors in workshop, including blocking, acting coaching and other directing tasks (could this be the PC)
  • Work with Change it Up! lead team to maintain program quality including collaborating on mid-program training and facilitation coaching.

 

Team Leadership and Administration 10%

  • Develop and maintain UMetc as a community by facilitating the intentional development of student learning and development through the facilitation of meetings, professional development, and team-building for company. 
  • Serve as liaison between the company and campus service offices represented in the productions
  • Attend regular meetings with supervisors in ONSP and Student Life.
  • Consult and/or Collaborate with Campus Organizations and Departments on the use of theatre as a tool for education.
  • Collaborate with other campus theatre groups to share talent and resources
  • Develop and oversee administration of audition process for actors in the fall and in the spring
  • Prepare reports of program activities
  • Evaluate the company and specific performances
  • Monitor budget expenditures for the company

 

Required Qualifications*

  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • Will possess a strong theatrical background, including experience with direction and script development and an understanding of how theater can be utilized to inform, enlighten, and teach.
  • Experience with Applied or Community-Based theatre including directing of devised and original work
  • Experience working with college age student performers
  • Possess an understanding of the common social, academic and personal issues college students face
  • Ability to incorporate educational/informational content into scripts and performances. 
  • Capable of operating in a highly variable and fast-changing environment
  • Strong Interpersonal oral and written skills to effectively communicate with faculty, staff and students
  • Experience in facilitating discussions amongst diverse participants
  • Demonstrated learning and/or work in the area of intercultural competence
  • An understanding of social justice education and/or theatre for social change
  • Ability to work flexible hours (including nights and weekend).
  •  Computer literacy with proficiency in MS office products (Word, Excel, PowerPoint). 

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.