WAC expands course options
Sept. 25, 2004 9:00 p.m.
In addition to preparing to move into a brand-new, redesigned,
state-of-the-art building set to open in winter, World Arts and
Cultures faculty have been tweaking the details of their major to
allow for greater opportunities for all students.
The undergraduate major, which is divided into cultural studies
and dance concentrations, has been committed to studying the
relationship between culture and the arts since its establishment,
and this year will bring more elements of the two areas across
“We”˜re trying to offer the most varied classes as
possible,” said Wendy Temple, the department’s undergraduate
counselor. “Dance students will take more composition
classes, and cultural studies students will study the ethnography
Affecting both concentrations will be the policy for senior
projects. In the past, all seniors were required to present a final
project to serve as an expression of their time in WAC. Instead,
they will have the option to choose a course study path in which
they will take two extra classes.
“There was a feeling that to lock students into one way of
finishing their studies was a little restrictive,” said
Angelia Leung, professor and dance department chair. “This
way students can still deepen and develop material for the student
festival without the same kind of pressure."
The new design will also make it possible for WAC students to
graduate in fall or winter quarters, giving them more options in
World Arts and Cultures Undergraduate Society President and WAC
and economics student Lauren Ziminsky agrees that the change will
“I think it’s a great thing,” she said.
“It helps me to accomplish my goal of graduating on time, and
those people who are passionate about performance will use the
With the opening of Glorya Kaufman Hall in the winter (though it
was originally slated to open in the fall), students will enjoy
even more benefits with the migration from the Kinross Building in
Westwood Village to the main campus.
“We were given the opportunity to completely
renovate,” said Temple. “Glorya Kaufman came through
with tremendous support and allowed us to create a totally new
Features of the new building include a large marbled center
walkway, a student lounge and a computer room. And that’s
only the entrance.
The second floor will feature a 399-seat performance space with
movable seating and brand-new lighting and sound technology.
According to current plans, the theater will be used for
master’s students’ productions as soon as the end of
In addition to a new theater, the building also features new
lecture rooms and dance studios. One studio even becomes a dressing
room during performances. The building also welcomes a brand-new
outdoor garden theater that will serve as both a classroom and a
“I’m really excited about the opening,” said
Ziminsky. “I feel like (currently) we’re so separated
from the rest of campus, and this will give us more of a sense of
Although facilities have improved, university budget cuts have
limited the expansion of the department’s programs and
curriculum. Temple hopes that the new facility will lead to the
expansion of more programs,
“We’re looking forward to expanding our curriculum
in the new space,” she said.