Our Vision

To excel as the premiere professional theatre training program built upon a liberal arts foundation.

Our Mission

The Department promotes excellence in education, research, and service by fostering student engagement and leadership; exploring new questions, techniques, and practices in the theatre; and supporting the principles of Inclusive Excellence by valuing diversity and inclusiveness throughout every sector of the department.

Our Values

  1. The ideals of liberal education
  2. The creative process through collaborative practice
  3. Classroom study and practical experience are of equal and complimentary importance
  4. The development of intellectual character and creative and personal growth
  5. Students becoming life-long learners who contribute to their respective discipline and profession while enhancing the cultural lives of the University and community
  6. The apprenticeship model for educating students in the art and craft of theatre
  7. Relationships with The Black Hills Playhouse and other arts entities
  8. Theatre as a vehicle for social, civic and cultural engagement
  9. The ethical standards guiding our discipline and industry
  10. Creative research, scholarship and service

Our Strengths

  1. A faculty of practicing artist-scholars committed to excellence in education
  2. Preparing the student for a career in the theatre and encouraging personal and creative growth
  3. Providing a comprehensive liberal arts education that is supplemented by intensive craft-training
  4. Developing creative and pragmatic problem-solving skills
  5. Depth, breadth and flexibility of curriculum in NAST - accredited degree programs
  6. Individualized professional and personal mentoring in a supportive environment
  7. A high student success rate in top level academic and professional arts venues
  8. Extensive opportunities in high quality production program
  9. A long-standing association with The Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park and growing affiliation with the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival

The University of South Dakota is an institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST).