Bethany College gives students the choice between a major in English education, a major in English, or a minor in English.
Through the English program, students master the skills of critical thinking and advanced writing techniques. Bethany also places heavy emphasis on community relations so students gain the skills necessary to be leaders in their fields as well as their communities.
Communication & Theatre
The mission of Bethany College Theatre and Communication is firmly rooted in the mission of the college: to challenge the students to perform the spoken word as a means of communication both clearly and artistically and to nurture in students a sense of confidence and responsibility in their communication art.
The purposes are:
- to create an environment in which students are nurtured and challenged to seek and acquire knowledge broadly in the disciplines of Theatre, Communication, and Performance Studies.
- to enable students to develop reading, writing, research, and critical thinking skills in those disciplines and beyond.
- to allow students to hone their talents as performers, designers, directors, playwrights, speakers and communicators.
- to enable students to understand the relationship between oral communication as performance and theatrical performance as communication.
Assistant Professor of English Kristin Van Tassel teaches classes in writing and American literature.
Her essays and poetry have been published in Alternet, Counterpunch, Mamazine, Transitions Abroad, Relief and World Hum, and The Chronicle of Higher Education. Her scholarly articles have appeared in American Studies, ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment, and The Journal of Ecocriticism. Van Tassel has presented numerous papers at national literary conferences, including several for the Popular Culture and American Culture Conference and ASLE, the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment.
Van Tassel received her Ph.D. from the Department of English at the University of Kansas. She holds an M.A. from the Department of English at California State University and a B.A. from the Department of Writing and Literature at George Fox University.
Van Tassel coordinates the honors program and serves as chair on the Bethany College Curriculum Committee. She is professionally associated with the National Council of Teachers of English and Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment.
Carl Isaacson, professor of communication, has been at Bethany College since 2004.
Isaacson teaches classes in public speaking, rhetoric, mass communication, argumentation and human communication. His fields of interest include Swedish Americana. He has served as educator/curator of the Swedish American Museum Center in Chicago, and his research has been published in the Chronicle of Higher Education and American Communication Journal.
For the 2006 Messiah Festival of the Arts, Isaacson translated, adapted and directed a student production of “Barabbas” based on Pär Lagerkvist’s 1950 novel of the same title.
Isaacson received his Ph.D. in theatre from the University of Minnesota, Minn. He also holds a M.Div. with a major in Parish Ministry from Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, Columbia, S.C.
Greg LeGault is an associate professor of theatre at Bethany College. A member of the Bethany College faculty since 2000, LeGault is artistic director of Bethany College Theatre and teaches courses in acting, oral interpretation, playwriting, theatre history, set design, and directing. He is currently serving as chair of the English, Theatre and Communications Department.
His plays have been performed in a number of venues, including Strawdog Theatre in Chicago and the Orlando Fringe Festival. His full-length play “Masterpiece” was produced in the Southern Illinois University Playwrights’ Workshop. A one-act version of the play received the Christian M. Moe Playwriting Award for Best Short Play. “In the Wake,” co-written with Michael Speller, was a play lab selection at the 2009 Great Plains Theatre Conference in Omaha.
LeGault has over 25 years of experience in acting, directing and set design. He earned his M.F.A. in Playwriting from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, an M.A. in Theatre History and Criticism from Ohio University, Athens, and a B.A. in Theatre Arts with a Performance Emphasis from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.