Eastern Nazarene College has hired new leadership for the Communication Arts major at ENC. Dr. Ayshia Stephenson is a playwright, director, and award-winning poet from Brooklyn, NY. She has earned her MFA in Writing from the California Institute of Arts and her PhD in Communication from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She has a passion for using “media and performance to investigate culture.” Apart from holding full-time visiting professorships at Salem State University in Massachusetts and Seoul National University in South Korea, she has also taught in Poland. On top of this, she has a passion for Christ and social justice which will compliment the Humanities program.
Dr. Stephenson is the only faculty member in the Communication Arts major, so she is currently teaching all the classes. Even though this is a lot of work, she says she enjoys every second of it. Her favorite class to teach is Persuasion and Argumentation. Fortunately, ENC will be hiring more faculty part time in the spring to help teach some of the Journalism classes.
Dr. Stephenson states that one thing she would change about the Communication department at ENC is its concentration: “The vision for our Communication Arts major is in media and video production, fields that are relevant to the future of communication and offer our students employable skills.” She wants to make sure that students are prepared for the real world, marketable to employers, and earn relevant employment after graduating from ENC. She is excited to have leadership over the majors to make them even better.
Regarding the status of the majors, Dr. Stephenson explains that “Communication Arts and Journalism & Writing are now majors within the Humanities Program. The Humanities Program also includes Theatre for Social Justice and History. As for current ways to get involved, I am looking for an assistant to help with Communication Arts initiatives and the position may lead to paid work. Also, students are also encouraged to join the Writing Club if they are interested in creative writing and want to share their work with other students in a supportive environment.” Please contact Dr. Stephenson for more information regarding these opportunities.