Theatre School Dean presents policy of collaboration at SGA


Erin Henze

The Theatre School (TTS) Dean, Martine Kei Green-Rogers, began her tenure on July 1, 2022. She served as the interim dean the year prior.

The Theatre School (TTS) Dean Martine Kei Green-Rogers visited the Student Government Association (SGA) general body meeting on April 6. While previous deans and administrators used their time at these meetings to answer questions, Green-Rogers instead did the asking to brainstorm ways for TTS to be more prominent on-campus. 

She collected student feedback on feelings toward TTS and how to keep the college more engaged in the DePaul community.

“Something I’d like to pose to each of you is to think about your day to day existence,” Green-Rogers said at the meeting. “How much are you experiencing with [TTS]? How much are you hoping not to deal with us?”

Magoli Garcia, SGA vice president and junior, said Green-Rogers’ approach to ask SGA questions was the first time a special guest used their time this way. She said visitors are encouraged to engage with the general body however they are most comfortable, which Green-Rogers used to keep the students involved in the conversation. 

“We don’t want these to seem like another class students have to take,” Garcia said. “Instead, we want it to be a conversation between two groups who are learning to understand each other and what their roles are.”

Green-Rogers said she feels TTS is isolated from a majority of DePaul student life. She wants to explore collaborating with other colleges, specifically naming the School of Music and the College of Science and Health, to make the school a more interdisciplinary and outfacing conservatory. 

“Conservatory training has always been a deep dive into what we can bring to our art,” Green-Rogers said. “We bring our best art when we are rested and experiencing life outside of [TTS]. I feel I am my best self when I’m with other people that don’t just make art.”

Parveen Mundi, SGA executive vice president of student affairs and sophomore, said most of her interaction with TTS students was during her time on the DePaul Mock Trial Team. She said the transferable skill of performance between acting and mock trial influences TTS students to join, even if they have little to no legal knowledge to aid them.

“A lot of the time, that sense of belonging to other parts of campus life are missing in theatre students,” Mundi said. “It was very nice to see that [Green-Rogers] seemed open and receptive to making some college-wide changes to really help address that larger sentiment from her students.”

Kellen Brown, SGA chief of staff and senior, took an acting class in TTS which changed his perception about what the school had to offer. Although he is a political science major, the class was a fine arts requirement from the honors program that pushed him out of his comfort zone. Brown said the performance and confidence skills taught are applicable to his everyday life.

“When you’re putting on a persona or acting like another person, it gives you more insight into how human beings interact and more social skills,” Brown said. “I didn’t realize I could gain that from [TTS] but it was one of the reasons I enjoyed the [acting] class.” 

Mundi said the first priority to collaborate with TTS is to have a dedicated representative in SGA through the Senator for TTS – a role that is currently open. She said having a direct channel is crucial to connect with the school’s students and faculty and to figure out what ideas for collaboration are feasible.

“It would be great to see someone run for this role in the upcoming election so when we are having these conversations about them, we’re hearing directly from these students,” Mundi said. “I understand [TTS] has student organizations that are very specific to them but we’re looking for a voice who can make this their primary role in SGA.”

Garcia said there are no other guest speakers scheduled to visit SGA. However, she hopes to bring in more deans and administrators to continue giving the SGA general body a better perspective of different roles at DePaul.

“What SGA got from [Green-Rogers] during this meeting is how conscious she is of the interactions her students are having within her own college,” Garcia said. “That is really important to recognize. I’m glad she was willing to accept feedback from our senators on how the college itself and its students are interacting with the DePaul community as a whole.”