Theatre Program


The Theatre faculty at Wayne State College wish to extend to you a warm welcome. We appreciate your visiting us and we hope to meet you in person soon. Please, explore our pages at your leisure. Your visit here tells us you have a love of Theatre - just as we do. If we can assist you with any further questions, please feel free to contact us. Our contact information is located near the bottom of this page. Enjoy your time here and Vive le Theatre!


Why study Theatre?

A passion stirs within you – you have an inherent need to understand . . . what motivates people to behave in certain ways? Is it their environment? Or is it their nature? And you are driven by the need to comprehend these questions and to create. Perhaps you had a role in a play and as a consequence of that experience, you now have a better understanding of certain human behaviors. Or perhaps, through set, lighting, or costuming design, you reached a level of human understanding beyond what you knew before. The study of Theatre is the study of human beings. It is an art form that co-mingles all disciplines – music, history, graphic arts, sociology, language, business, anthropology, science, math, psychology, and physical education, just to name a few. Those of us who embrace our calling are fortunate indeed for our life’s journey will take us to many wondrous places. We will have the opportunity to visit, vicariously perhaps, ancient civilizations, contemporary cities, fantasy lands, rural landscapes, native and ethnic cultures, mountaintops, seascapes, historical destinations, and futuristic settlements - all in an effort to discover what propels humans through life. We are, by craft and by nature, life-long learners. Embrace your passion – wear it proudly – and embark on a new adventure – study Theatre!


What can I do with Theatre training?

Theatre training offers exciting career opportunities. Potential employers recognize that Theatre people are creative individuals with a broad range of communication and problem-solving skills. Many careers emphasize written and interpersonal communication, aesthetic discernment, emotional understanding, teamwork, and organizational ability – the skills at which Theatre people excel.


Careers in Theatre

Artistic Director


Costume Designer

Costume Cutter



Assistant Designer

Master Carpenter

Property Maker

Light Operator



Sound Designer

Musical Director

Fight Master

Press Representative


Production Manager

Costume Supervisor

Costume Maker

Sewing Hand

Set Designer

Scenic Artist

Scenic Carpenter

Lighting Designer



Drama Therapist

Sound Operator


Stage Manager

Publicity Officer

Graphic Designer

House Manager






Animal Talent Coordinator


Script Manager

Stunt Coordinator

Talent Manager

Amusement Park Entertainer

Movie Theatre Manager


Box Office Manager

Catering Manager

Acting Coach

Booking Manager

Makeup Artist



Prop Manager

Script Coach



Talent Scout

Foley Artist



Related fields that recognize the merits of Theatrical training




Public Relations

Small Business


Copy Writing

Museum Management

Customer Service


Exhibit/Display Design





Media Planning




Facilities Management


Performance Criticism

Human Resources


Special Event Coordination

Faux Painting

Corporate Management

Undercover Police Work

Radio/TV Announcing

Broadcast Journalism

Foreign Correspondence


Political Lobbying


Labor Relations


College Admissions

Fund Raising


Community Affairs

Developmental Training


 Who needs Theatre?

An excerpt from Who needs Theatre? By Robert Brustein

“If the theatre has a single advantage over film and television it is its immediacy. Dramatic events exist in a continuum of present time, while celluloid and videotape, no matter how convincing or realistic the photography, are imprisoned in the past (so is narrative fiction, which declares its past condition with the author’s “he saids” and “she saids”). The media are not happening; they have already happened. We are witnesses of history, remote, aloof, involuntarily disengaged.


It is for this reason, perhaps, that we want to be alone or in small groups when watching television or films, while we prefer to be with lots of people when seeing a play. A crowded movie house annoys us, an empty theatre leaves us feeling conspicuous, visible. Theatregoing is a communal act, moviegoing a solitary one, which may explain why the stage has proved less hospitable to the lures of pornography, that most private of practices, when the films and cable television are providing it with dark corners and empty rooms. Theatregoing, in short, is one of a dwindling group of activities that bring Americans into communication with each other; it is, therefore, an enterprise that preserves some vestige of belief in the possibilities of society, if not of communion. It may also be one of the last remaining shreds of evidence that we are a people, and not just an isolated mass of frightened fanatasists, barricaded in our homes, seeking safety from a sinister and threatening external world.


To my question, “Who needs Theatre?”, then, I would reply, we all do – not for its superior aesthetic qualities, which it reveals so rarely, certainly not for its comfort or convenience, not even for its capacity to move forward in space and time in a culture of canned images, but because it represents social history in the making, both on the stage and in the audience. It signifies that community we have forsaken, the accidents and risks we would rather avoid, the sweat and gristle we prefer to disguise, the labor of humans working against odds. On the threshold of each new season no more promising than the last, the American theatre represents an act of confidence – banal and dangerous and inconvenient like life, and like life, still capable of inspiring hope.”


Our Mission

A division of Wayne State College’s Communication Arts Department, the Theatre Minor trains individuals to work in a variety of careers, including television and stage performance, stage theatre and facilities management, lighting and scenic design and construction, broadcasting, directing and writing. Students completing the program are well-prepared for careers in the above areas and for further academic study in such areas as film, arts management, politics, and law, speech communication, and dramaturgy. The subject endorsement in Theatre prepares individuals to meet state and regional certification requirements for teaching theatre arts at the secondary level, and theatre courses are required as part of the Language Arts teaching degree.  


Relation to Wayne State College’s Mission

Learning Excellence, Student Success, Regional Engagement  

Wayne State College is a comprehensive institution of higher education dedicated to freedom of inquiry, excellence in teaching and learning, and regional service and development. Offering affordable undergraduate and graduate programs, the College prepares students for careers, advanced study, and civic involvement. The College is committed to faculty-staff-student interaction, public services, and diversity within a friendly and collegial campus community.


Wayne State College’s Theatre Minor addresses this mission in five essential ways:

  • The program provides academic options that are not otherwise available in the Northeast Nebraska region, and it also supports the Language Arts field teaching endorsement at WSC.
  • By providing individual attention and opportunities to participate in activities that build teamwork and problem solving skills, it enables learning to be tailored to each student’s particular academic profile and abilities.
  • The program provides quality teaching and support through the efforts of an experienced core of theatre faculty and through the contributions of faculty in other related programs. The teaching efforts reflect current principles of good teaching practice: encouraging student-faculty contact, encouraging cooperation among students, encouraging active learning, giving prompt feedback, emphasizing time on task, communicating high expectations, and respecting diverse talents and ways of learning.
  • The program serves the campus community by staging productions on campus that are free to students, faculty, and staff. Plays introduce students to literacy diversity and communicative themes are often required by general education literature courses.
  • The program assists the development of its service region through public performances and service activities such as judging high school one-act plays and through services to area teachers.

The Wayne State College Theatre Minor strives to provide students with the finest possible training through classroom and studio instruction. In addition, the program aims to supplement classroom and studio training by providing maximal opportunity for students to experience the “nuts and bolts” of the craft through active participation in four productions per academic year.



The Wayne State College Theatre Minor is an active participant in KCACTF (Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival). Each year we enter a production(s) in KCACTF and our shows are adjudicated by outside respondents. Wayne State College is a member of Region V, a seven state region that includes Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota, Kansas, Missouri, and Minnesota. Through KCACTF our students participate in many further learning opportunities including the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship auditions, Summer Stock and Repertoire Theatre auditions, and the many workshops, productions, showcases, competitions, and fairs offered through KCACTF. More information about Region V is available at Information about the national KCACTF program is at


Contact Information
For more information, please contact:


Gwen Jensen , Ph.D.

Professor and Director
Dept. of Comm. Arts
(402) 375-7422

Communication Arts Related Links

Mass Communication

Speech Communication


Cultural Events Calendar

Theatre Related Links


Degrees Offered

Design & Technical

Acting & Directing

Financial Aid

Drama Club

Lambda Pi Eta

Current Season

Children's Show

Past Productions

Upcoming Events

April 20-August 31

WSC Juried Student Exhibit

Nordstrand Visual Arts Gallery

Opening Reception:

April 20, 4:30-6:00 p.m.


April 28

Joshua Calkin, tuba

Ley Theatre, 7:30 p.m.


April 29

Black and Gold

Show Choir

Ramsey Theatre,

7:30 p.m.


April 30

Plains Writers Series

Humanities Lounge, 2:00 p.m.

Fiction Slam

The Max Bar & Grill,

7:00 p.m.


April 30

Wildcat Big Band (Jazz)

Ramsey Theatre,

7:30 p.m.


May 2

Jerod Kohler, trombone

Ley Theatre, 7:30 p.m.


May 4

Honors Recital

Ramsey Theatre,

7:30 p.m.

See All Events
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