The Department of Theatre, Cinema and Dance was notified this past spring by the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST) that it received five-year full accreditation for its theatre and cinema programs. At the time of the department’s accreditation, only 190 institutions in the United States had received NAST accreditation, and Missouri Western was just one of five Missouri universities with that distinction.

“It tells the world that our faculty, curriculum and student work meet a national standard of excellence,” said Dr. Robert Willenbrink, former dean of the School of Fine Arts.
Rather than just review the classes offered, the accrediting body looks at the competency outcomes of students, and the accreditation process includes a self-study and on-site review.

“Receiving the accreditation was exciting,” said Jeff Stover, associate professor of theatre and department chair. “Students can now say they graduated from an accredited program, and they are excited about that.”