By Hub City Times staff
MARSHFIELD — A central Wisconsin campus with a long history of theater is losing its full-time instructor in that department. Regional Executive Director and UW Marshfield-Wood County Campus Dean Keith Montgomery has confirmed that Damian Ernest, assistant professor of communication and theater arts and the theater director, is being reassigned to another UW Colleges campus.
“Well, faculty in the UW Colleges have tenure in the institution, not in campus, and so as we look at theater enrollments across our campuses, there is a need for a theater director on another campus,” Montgomery explained.
Marshfield’s campus will not lose its theater program. Montgomery said that theater courses will be covered in the Marshfield distance learning program from another location, and directors for theater productions will be hired from within the community on an as-needed basis.
“Well, you look at enrollments and programs. I mean you have to manage your resources. You have a budget,” said Montgomery. “Across the whole UW system, there are less high school graduates, so we’ve had to be a little more careful with some of our resources, but we will still have theater on this campus, and going forward I know that we can still offer UW theater here by hiring someone who isn’t a faculty member but who is a director and who will specifically be hired to direct theater and provide opportunities for students and for community members who participate in theater productions.”