Skip to Main Content

Apply Now to the University of Wyoming apply now

Diversity and Inclusion

Departmental Statement

Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests have spread across the U.S. and the world following the death of George Floyd. The movement has gathered momentum outside of the urban centers and is showing up in small towns and even in our own backyard, Laramie, WY. There are many UW faculty, staff, students, who stand in solidarity with the BLM movement who are asking, “What can we do?”

We at the University of Wyoming Department of Theatre and Dance would like to make clear our deeply held belief that Black Lives Matter and state that we stand with our students, audiences, and community in condemning systemic racism and unjust violence against Americans who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC).

We would also like to acknowledge how often we as teachers, artists, and mentors have failed to live up to the challenge of offering our community art and education that is equitable, responsible, and founded in a spirit that advocates for powerful and immediate change at the university, in our community, and across the region.   As such, we would like to reaffirm our commitment to continued self-reflection and growth so that we may stand as true allies to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities moving forward.

In light of the political times, we are writing today after a very emotional and charged faculty meeting, where we discussed as a group, our department's responsibility and response to the current dialogue, debate, protest and celebration of diverse cultures going on around us.  We know that many of you are involved in this conversation, as well, and we wanted to update you on a few actionable items we discussed today to pledge our solidarity with BLM movement and to support diversity in Theatre and Dance to create more cultural awareness, dialogue and institutional transformation.

  1. Performance Best Practices: Over the past year, UW Theatre and Dance has developed a document outlining best practices for performance, addressing diversity in our season selection, blind casting, and sexual intimacy consent, and so on. This is a living document, regularly updated based on our current understanding and input from students, and revisions to it will be made habitually as we move forward. We invite dialogue and feedback on the current document.

  2. THEA 3910, 20th - 21st Century Theatre Diversity:  In addition, we would like to point you to this course, which meets the A&S Diversity requirement and we are committed to making this a part of our required curriculum in the future.  There are spaces available in this class in the fall,and this would be a great semester to enroll.  Dr. Aragón is offering this as a hybrid course offering remote and face to face components.

  3. BLM: We will also be providing you withresources to better understand how we can move forward to address the social injustices of institutional racism, racial biases, discrimination, oppression, and violence against people of color.  These will be videos, websites, books, plays and performances.  Please seek out, and share, all information that you can.  We will be posting links to campus resources and official statements from the University of Wyoming.   

  4. Dialogue Across Campus: As leadership of women, queer, trans people, and people of color are one of the core strengths of Black Lives Matter, we are taking initiative to actively seek out conversations with campus colleagues and programs to participate in dialogue about ways to create space for dialogue,storytelling and sharing.  

We invite you to be a part of this journey with us. We want your voice at the table…it is valuable for us to learn from you and you to learn from our actions!

The UW Theatre & Dance​ faculty: Cecilia Aragon, Jason Banks, Bill Downs, Jenny Foldenauer, Cat Kamrath, Marsha Knight, Andrew Lia, Landee Lockhart, Patrick Konesko, Scott Tedmon-Jones, Don Turner, Margaret Wilson, Lou Anne Wright

top of page

 

Resources

University of Wyoming

top of page

 

Nationwide Resources

top of page

 

General Videos/Performances

(Below, adapted from Ohio University's listing)

top of page

 

Responses to George Floyd's Murder

top of page

 

Reading List of Plays, Articles, and Books

(Below, adapted from Ohio University's listing)

top of page

 

Social Media/Podcasts/Blogs

(Adapted from Ohio University's listing)

top of page


Contact Us

Dept. of Theatre and Dance

Dept. 3951

1000 E. University Avenue

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: 307-766-5100

Email: jchapman@uwyo.edu

Find us on Facebook (Link opens a new window) Find us on Twitter (Link opens a new window) Find us on Instagram (Link opens a new window)

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
UW Operators (307) 766-1121 | Contact Us | Download Adobe Reader

Accreditation | Virtual Tour | Emergency Preparedness | Employment at UW | Privacy Policy | Harassment & Discrimination | Accessibility Accessibility information icon