(L-R) Rachel King, Brant Pope, Adrian Curtin and Kate Newey.

Drama department signs student exchange agreement with University of Texas at Austin

The College of Humanities and the Drama department were delighted to host Professor Brant Pope, Chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Texas at Austin on 31 March. The  relationship between the two departments has been strengthened through the signing of a student exchange agreement. 

During his stay, Professor Pope met with Dr Adrian Curtin, Professor Kate Newey and Dr John Bolin from the Drama and English Departments along with staff from the International Office. This was Professor Pope’s third visit to the University of Exeter and he was given a tour highlighting the university’s extensive facilities for its students. This included the Sports Park which has recently benefitted from an £8million development; The Forum, the University’s student centrepiece containing a 24 hour library; the Career Zone; and the 400-seat alumni auditorium. He also visited the Students’ Guild, the Student Health Centre and the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum located on site.

He commented, “I was particularly struck by the beauty of the campus, the high level of research and scholarship, and the exceptionally rich and diverse student body. Our visiting students will be able to thrive in an environment that exposes them to people, perspectives, and facilities not often found in the United States.”

The Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Texas at Austin is one of the largest theatre and dance departments in the United States. The exchange agreement will allow Drama students from the University of Exeter and the University of Texas at Austin to study abroad at the partner institution as part of their undergraduate degree, as well as providing an opportunity for PhD students to benefit from the resources and staff expertise at the other.

Professor Pope has a thirty-year career in both academic and professional theatre. As a professional actor and director, his work has been seen in film, television and regional theatre. Prior to his role at the University of Texas at Austin, Professor Pope served as chair of the Department of Theatre at the University of Illinois and head of acting and directing, at Penn State University.

Rachel King, Assistant Director of Partnerships in University of Exeter’s International Office commented “We are delighted that the exchange has come to fruition - our students will have the wonderful opportunity to study at one of the largest and most respected universities in the US, and we are looking forward to hosting Austin students here at Exeter in the near future.”

Professor Pope adds, “The entire purpose and value of international study is the opportunity to encounter the world in new and exciting ways. Exeter will provide the students from the University of Texas a wonderful set of first-time experiences. We can't wait to begin!”

The University of Texas at Austin is 27th in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2013/14 and 71st in the QS World University Rankings 2013.

Date: 17 April 2014

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