The USC Board of Trustees formally voted to change the name of the USC School of Theatre to the USC School of Dramatic Arts on Friday. The decision was made so that the school’s name described all majors within the program.
An email sent by Madeline Puzo, the dean of the USC School of Theatre, said one of the reasons for the name change was because the new name better illustrates the reach and intentions of the school’s students.
“Ninety-seven [percent] of our students come to USC with the intention of working in the dramatic arts after graduation but only 12 [percent] intend to work in theatre alone,” Puzo said.
Elizabeth Garrett, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, said the new name matches the transforming field of dramatic arts.
“As increasingly diverse modes of performance and exhibition find expression in the dramatic arts, a broad range of new opportunities will emerge,” Garrett said in a statement. “In taking on a name that reflects the practice in a modern context, the USC School of Dramatic Arts firmly establishes itself at the forefront of this exciting transformation.”
Grace Ko, a freshman majoring in theatre, said the broader name change could entice more students to apply to the school.
“The USC School of Dramatic Arts is a more overarching name and incorporates more aspects than the USC School of Theatre,” Ko said. “Many students who want to work in the entertainment industries will probably want to apply to the school now, whereas they may have been deterred by the original name since it only included theatre.”
The name will officially change July 1.