Red Rocks Theatre Department wins award

Recognition shines spotlight on innovation and problem solving at local community college

Bob Wooley
bwooley@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 4/13/21

Red Rocks Community College (RRCC) has been selected by the Western Alliance of Community College Academic Leaders (the Alliance) to be the recipient of the 2021 Bernice Joseph Award. The award, …

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Red Rocks Theatre Department wins award

Recognition shines spotlight on innovation and problem solving at local community college

Posted

Red Rocks Community College (RRCC) has been selected by the Western Alliance of Community College Academic Leaders (the Alliance) to be the recipient of the 2021 Bernice Joseph Award.

The award, named for an influential University of Alaska educator who passed away in 2014, was created to honor problem-solving and innovation among community colleges in the western United States.

According to the College’s press release, RRCC was selected for its “inventive and creative plan for how a Spring 2020 theatre history class would respond to a theater closure during a pandemic as artistic directors/producers.

The release said Dorothy Welty, RRCC Dean of Instruction, submitted “Building Bridges in the Dark: Actions that Held Together a Theater Department in a Pandemic” to the Alliance after seeing Kelly Jo Eldredge, Department Chair of Theatre Arts and Dance, empower her students to translate their vision into action in their very own project. 

Welty and Eldredge accepted the award on behalf of RRCC and the announcement was made at the Forum and Alliance 2020-21 Virtual Meeting Series, April 9.

“We were so thrilled when we heard Dorothy had submitted our department for this award,” said Eldredge. “Dorothy is always such a champion of the work we do in Theatre Arts and Dance. This past year has been

an incredible and creative learning experience for both students and staff in the department. Our students deserve all the credit for coming up with fantastic ideas and carrying them through to production.”

Red Rocks Community College has the only fully developed two-year Theatre Arts program in performance, production, and theatre technology in Colorado. The program offers courses leading to an Associate of Arts in Theatre Arts and an Associate of Applied Science in Theatre Technology. 

The school also offers unique certificates in technical theatre, costuming, stage makeup, choreography, musical theatre, and writing for the stage and screen. 

In addition, the Theatre Arts and Dance Department at RRCC engages in numerous partnership projects, both on campus and within the community.

The Alliance, founded in 2010 is a membership organization based at the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) is one of four U.S. higher education regional compacts established by Congress in 1953.

In receiving the Bernice Joseph award, RRCC’s theatre department gains recognition among the Alliance member institutions located in the WICHE region encompassing 16 state and territorial members for their ‘Ghost Light Theater’ 2020 summer project. 

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