University of Connecticut, Dramatic Arts

Position ID:UConn-Dramatic Arts-495089 [#18335, 495089]
Position Title: Assistant Professor in Theatre and Human Rights, Tenure Track
Position Type:Tenured/Tenure-track faculty
Position Location:Storrs, Connecticut 06269, United States [map] sort by distance
Subject Areas: Race and Inequality Studies
Appl Deadline: finished (2021/03/19, finished 2021/10/23, listed until 2021/04/18)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed and new applications are no longer accepted. ***


The University of Connecticut's Human Rights Institute and the Department of Dramatic Arts in the School of Fine Arts are pleased to invite applications for a jointly appointed, tenure-track position at the rank of Assistant Professor in Theatre and Human Rights.  The position will be situated in the Theatre Studies Program and may align with a wide array of overlapping disciplines including playwrighting, theatre for social justice, devised theatre, theatre history, or directing.  

This position is part of the ongoing development of the arts-human rights collaboration between the School of Fine Arts and the Human Rights Institute.  We especially seek applicants whose creative activity, practice, and/or research in theatre and performance engages with major questions in human rights and social justice through performance.  Areas of experience might include devised theatre and playwriting, theatre for social justice, applied theatre research and practice, directing, or other areas of study and performance. The faculty member will contribute to efforts to better understand how theatre and performance have been deployed in mobilizations for social justice or human rightsWe hope that the successful candidate will generate publicly engaged creative activity and/or scholarship, including performance opportunities, and work with colleagues at UConn to move towards more equitable global society in which the creation and experience of theatre are rooted in human dignity, the generation of empathy, and historical knowledge.  

Potential areas of creative and/or scholarly focus:  

  • Playwriting and devised theatre practiceincluding various forms of Applied Theatre. 
  • Devised theatre and directing with a special emphasis on community-based theatre, participatory theatre methods, and research.  
  • Theatre history, including critical theory perspectives on contemporary performance methods and objectives.  
  • Studies of colonialism, coloniality, and state-sanctioned violence in relation to theatre, drama, and performance. 
  • Devised and/or participatory theatre as a mode of dissent, resistance, or mobilization for justice.  
  • Theatre in conflict zones or areas opost-conflict, including theatre employed in re-humanization and humanitarian programs domestically and internationally.  

We seek an artist/scholar-teacher who is committed to innovative performance practices and/or research and scholarly engagement and student-centered pedagogies. In addition to teaching a range of courses in their field, the successful candidate will teach relevant courses in theatre, human rights, and/or social justice, and will act as a member of the University of Connecticut graduate faculty. An M.F.A or Ph.D. in TheatrePerformance Studies, or related field is required at the time of hire. A strong record of creative activity and/or research and teaching is highly desirable, commensurate with the University of Connecticut’s status as a public, Research I institution.   

The successful candidate will be expected to contribute to creative activity through Connecticut Repertory Theatre and Dramatic Arts department-sponsored productions, including student developed work. In addition, the successful candidate is expected to produce creative works and/or research and scholarship with external partners such as regional or national performance venues and/or through extramural funding; high quality publications, conference presentations, grants, fellowships; and garner national attention as demonstrated through published criticism or other means of recognition. In the area of teaching, the successful candidate will share a deep commitment to effective instruction at the undergraduate and graduate levels, development of innovative courses, and mentoring of students in creative pursuits, research, outreach, and professional development. Successful candidates will also be expected to broaden participation in the department's creative projects among members of under-represented groups; demonstrate through their research, teaching, and/or public engagement the richness of diversity in the learning experience; integrate multicultural experiences into instructional methods; and provide leadership in developing pedagogical techniques designed to meet the needs of diverse learning styles and intellectual interests.  

The University of Connecticut’s Department of Dramatic Arts offers BFA degrees in Design/Technical Theatre, Acting, and Puppet Arts, and a BA degree in Theatre Studies. The Department offers an MFA in Theatre with concentrations in Scenic Design, Costume Design, Lighting Design, Technical Direction, Acting, Puppet Arts, and Arts Leadership and Cultural Management. Its MFA programs in performance and design/tech are rated among the top six by the University/Resident Theatre Association. The unique, internationally acclaimed MFA Program in Puppet Arts offers training and experience for students across the department in innovative puppet and object performance. There are twenty-five members of the full-time faculty and an additional 7 staff members. The Connecticut Repertory Theatre prepares students by blending education and industry. Created as a training ground, and modeled on a stand-alone LORT/regional theatre, CRT produces four Main Stage productions per academic year (two in the 486-seat, proscenium-stage Harriet Jorgensen Theatre and two in the 241-seat, thrust-stage Nafe Katter Theatre) and two Studio productions in the 116-seat Studio Theatre. The CRT has a professional staff of ten, several of whom also teach periodically. Also housed within the School of Fine Arts are the Department of Art & Art History, the Department of Music, the Department of Digital Media and Design, the William Benton Museum of Art, the Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts, and the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry.  

The Human Rights Institute (HRI) at UConn is one of the nation’s leading academic centers in human rights, offering undergraduate majors and minors in human rights as well as a Graduate Certificate in Human Rights. The undergraduate program is among the largest in the country, and UConn is the only public university offering a major. Program graduates go on to hold key humanitarian positions with NGOs, governments, and leading universities. HRI is globally recognized for its faculty expertise and for convening high-level international conferences and symposia. HRI collaborates with the Dodd Human Rights Impact (a Program of HRI) and Digital Media and Design on a Human Rights Film and Digital Media Initiative. The Institute has hosted a human rights film series since 2005 and has worked with UConn Libraries to build a collection of human rights films. UConn Libraries is also a site for Archives and Special Collections related to human rights documentaries and photography. 

The Department of Dramatic Arts is resolutely committed to fostering an inclusive, accessible, and equitable environment for all members of our community. With that affirmation in mind, historically underrepresented and/or marginalized groups of all held identities, including but not limited to, individuals with disabilities, women, candidates of color, and other underrepresented or marginalized groups, are actively encouraged to apply, and your offerings of continued accountability are welcomed. 

Founded in 1881, UConn is a Land Grant and Sea Grant institution and member of the Space Grant Consortium. It is the state’s flagship institution of higher education and includes a main campus in Storrs, CT, four regional campuses throughout the state, and 13 Schools and Colleges, including a Law School in Hartford, and Medical and Dental Schools at the UConn Health campus in Farmington. The University has approximately 10,000 faculty and staff and 32,000 students, including nearly 24,000 undergraduates and over 8,000 graduate and professional students. UConn is a Carnegie Foundation R1 (highest research activity) institution, among the top 25 public universities in the nation. Through research and creative activity, teaching, service, and outreach, UConn embraces diversity and cultivates leadership, integrity, and engaged citizenship in its students, faculty, staff, and alumni. UConn promotes the health and well-being of citizens by enhancing the social, economic, cultural, and natural environments of the state and beyond. The Storrs campus is located in a beautiful area of New England, with a moderate cost of living and proximity to major cultural, recreational, and urban centers of the Northeast. The University community provides residents with a rich diversity of cultural, artistic, athletic, and historic experiences, and the surrounding area offers affordable quality housing and top schools for faculty and families. The University serves as a beacon of academic and research excellence as well as a center for innovation and social service to communities. UConn is a leader in many scholarly, research, and innovation areas. Today, the path forward includes exciting opportunities and notable challenges. Record numbers of undergraduate applications and support for student success have enabled the University to become extraordinarily selective. We are pleased to continue these investments by inviting applications for a joint faculty position in the Department of Dramatic Arts and the Human Rights Institute.   


  • Teach undergraduate-level courses in Drama, Performance, Theatre, and Human Rights, broadly construed. 
  • Produce a significant record of creative practice and/or research and publications in the candidate’s primary field of study. 
  • Demonstrate the capacity and experience to develop productions for public performance with Connecticut Repertory Theatre and other professional or community-based performance ensembles. 
  • Establish a national presence in professional organizations and among peers in academic and professional theatre practicetheatre history, performance studies, cultural studies, and/or human rights studies.  
  • Help broaden participation in the department’s creative practice among members of under-represented groups, and demonstrate through their practice, research, teaching, and/or public engagement a commitment to addressing issues of diversity and equity within society and to employing pedagogies and performance methods designed to meet the needs of diverse learning styles and intellectual communities. 
  • Advise/mentor undergraduate students inDramatic Arts and Human Rights. 
  • Collaborate to build curricula and develop courses within Theater Studies and the Human Rights Institute.
  • Participate in service activities for the Human Rights Institute, Office of Global Affairs, the Department of Drama, the School of Fine Arts, and the University.  
  • Carry out other duties as assigned. 


  • M.F.A or Ph.D. in theatre, performance studies or related field. Equivalent foreign degrees are acceptable. 
  • Demonstrated potential for establishing a successful profile in creative activity and/or research and scholarship in the candidate’s primary field of study.  
  • Demonstrated potential for establishing a national presence in professional organizations and among peers in academic and professional communities. 
  • Deep commitment to promoting diversity and excellence through innovative research, teaching, and public engagement. 
  • Demonstrated commitment to creative practice and/or scholarship related to social justice, human rights, and theatre and performance.  
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and demonstrated collegiality.  


  • Record of successful public programs, productions and/or publications in candidate’s primary field of study. 
  • Teaching experience beyond the Teaching Assistant level.  
  • Commitment to, and record of, interdisciplinarity in creative practice and/or research and teaching. 
  • Demonstrated commitment to contributing through teaching and creative practice and/or research and scholarship to promoting diversity in the learning experience.   
  • Demonstrated commitment to bringing transregional, transcultural, and global perspectives to teaching and creative activity and/or research. 
  • Established record of creative practice and/or publications related to social justice or human rights, and theatre and performance. 
  • Demonstrated record of working effectively on interdisciplinary teams in higher education. 
  • The ability to contribute to a university-wide life-transformative, experiential education model, with a focus on human rights or social justice in the history of Theatre and Performance.  


This is a full-time, 9-month, tenure-track position with an anticipated start date of August 23, 2021. The successful candidate’s academic appointment will be at the Storrs campus. Faculty may also be asked to teach at one of UConn’s regional campuses or online as part of their ordinary workload. Salary for this position will be in the low $50's. 


Please apply online to Academic Jobs Online and submit the following application materials:

  • Cover letter
  • Curriculum vitae
  • A one to two-page creative activity and/or research and scholarship statement that discusses concepts or practices that are expected to form the basis of the candidate's professional career as well as the candidate’s approach to theater performance, and social justice or human rights;  
  • A one-page teaching statement (including teaching philosophy, teaching experience, commitment to effective learning, mentorship of students, concepts for new course development, etc.)
  • Copies of course syllabi
  • A one-page commitment to diversity statement (including broadening participation, integrating multicultural experiences in instruction and research and pedagogical techniques to meet the needs of diverse learning styles, etc.) 
  • Up to three examples of creative output and/or sample publications (such as portfolio/website presentations of creative work or scholarly articles, book chapters, dissertation chapters). 
  • Names and contact information of three academic referees. 

Evaluation of applicants will begin immediately. For fullest consideration please submit your application by April 12, 2021.   

If you have any questions related to the search, please send a detailed inquiry to Nisha Joshee Hardnett, Administrative Coordinator, at with #495089 Dramatic Arts Department Head Theatre and Human Rights Search in the subject line. 

Inquiries other than applications can be directed to: Gary M. English, Department of Drama, University of Connecticut, via email to  

For more information regarding the Department of Dramatic Arts, visit  

For more information regarding the Human Rights Institute, please visit the department website at   

At the University of Connecticut, our commitment to excellence is complemented by our commitment to building a culturally diverse community. 

Employment of the successful candidate is contingent upon the successful completion of a pre-employment criminal background check. 

This job will be filled subject to budgetary approval.

All employees are subject to adherence to the State Code of Ethics which may be found at

The University of Connecticut is committed to building and supporting a multicultural and diverse community of students, faculty and staff. The diversity of students, faculty and staff continues to increase, as does the number of honors students, valedictorians and salutatorians who consistently make UConn their top choice. More than 100 research centers and institutes serve the University’s teaching, research, diversity, and outreach missions, leading to UConn’s ranking as one of the nation’s top research universities. UConn’s faculty and staff are the critical link to fostering and expanding our vibrant, multicultural and diverse University community. As an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity employer, UConn encourages applications from women, veterans, people with disabilities and members of traditionally underrepresented populations.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the position description.

Further Info:
School of Fine Arts
Suite 201
1295 Storrs Rd. Unit 1128
Storrs, CT 06269-1128