Note (8/17/20): The process documented on this page was begun under the leadership of former Department Chair Troy Dwyer. Professor Dwyer announced July 1 that he was stepping down from the chair position and taking a medical leave of absence.
The work begun this spring has continued under the leadership of the Department Culture & Practices Committee, a group of faculty members that includes Megan Flynn, Rebecca Lustig, Matt Moore, Jeffrey Peterson, and Leticia Robles-Moreno. This committee is in communication with a group of students and alumni, and is working to chart the path forward.
This committee can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The faculty and staff of the Theatre & Dance Department remains fully committed to the Action Plan published June 17.
In the video commentary recorded by Professor Dwyer and linked below, there are some inaccuracies, which the committee is working to publicly correct. However, in the interest of transparency and documentation, these videos will remain public at this time. None of the inaccuracies materially affect the commitments made in the Departmental Action Plan.
We will make additional updates to this page in the next several weeks about recent activity, and will continue to update going forward.
As mandated by our students and alumni, the Theatre & Dance Department is undertaking ongoing work to ensure the establishment of anti-racism and the confrontation of anti-Blackness as fundamental departmental values and practices.
Documents and videos pursuant to these efforts will be posted on this public webpage.
Response & Action Plan
- Plan Document, released 6/17/20
- Letter from former department chair Troy Dwyer, 6/17/20
- Faculty & Staff Signatures, as of 6/18/20
A series of videos created by former department chair Troy Dwyer to provide additional response to the specific questions raised in the student letter of June 4, 2020.
- Video #1: Theatre Casting, 6/18/20
- Video #2: Season Selection, Part 1, 6/22/20
- Video #3: Season Selection, Part 2, 6/26/20
- Video #4: Anti-Racism Advisory Work, 7/1/20
In this video, Troy also discusses his medical leave, through the end of September, and his decision to step down as department chair.
A video created by Dance Program Director Jeffrey Peterson, in initial response to the letter from students and alumni to the Dance Program, of June 14, 2020.
Letter from Students & Alumni
- Letter received 6/4/20, written by Maereg Gebretekle ’22 and cosigned by over 400 Theatre & Dance students and alumni
- Student & Alumni Signatures to letter as of its release, 6/4/20
Please note that signatures were gathered through personal networking, prior to the publication of the letter. Many other students and alumni have expressed support for this letter, and no lack of endorsement should be inferred from the absence of any name from this list.
- Letter to the Dance Program received 6/14/20, written by a group of eight dance students and alumni
All updates posted to this page will also be shared on the Theatre & Dance Department's Facebook page. Updates will be emailed to all current and incoming students.
We have developed a mailing list for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and families who also wish to receive these updates. This list will not be used for any other purpose without your express permission. To sign up for this mailing list, please fill out this form.
If you have comments or questions, please feel free to do any of the following:
- Comment to the appropriate thread or threads on the Facebook page.
- Send email to the Theatre & Dance Department
- Make an appointment to talk to department leadership during accountability office hours.
We are obligated to inform you that all faculty and staff of the department are mandatory reporters under Title IX. This means that we are required to report incidents of identity-based discrimination, harassment, sexual misconduct, and criminal conduct to the Director of Equity & Title IX, Lin-Chi Wang. Here's what Mandatory Reporting means. Counselors, health providers, and clergy are not Mandatory Reporters.
Additional Relevant Documents & Resources
- Statement by the Black Faculty of Muhlenberg College, June 9, 2020
- Muhlenberg College Black Lives Matter Resources, including organizations and reading lists
- Departmental Statement in response to the killing of George Floyd, June 2, 2020
- Sedehi Diversity Project
- Muhlenberg Office of Multicultural Life
page updated 22 June 2020
• 6/18/20: updated list of signatories; added update history; formatting; added Response Video #1
• 6/22/20: added Response Video #2
• 6/24/20: updated list of signatories
• 6/26/20: added Response Video #3; added June 14 letter to Dance Program from students and alumni; added video response from Jeffrey Peterson, Dance Program Director.
• 7/1/20: added Response Video #4
• 7/10/20: edited list of communication options to reflect Troy Dwyer's medical leave and decision to step down as department chair. Added further explanation of the contents of Response Video #4.
• 8/17/20: added explanatory note to the top of the page, regarding the current status of the Action Plan, in the wak of Troy Dwyer's departure.