Student Profile
Brenna Mateljan '13

Brenna is a dance and communication major who hopes to use both to realize her dream career.

Watch Brenna's story»

Why Choose
Cedar Crest?
  • Personalized attention
  • Average class size <20
  • Women's leadership opportunities
  • Flexibility to add dual major, minor

Senior Thesis Project

The performing arts department at Cedar Crest College provides real-world experiences to students like you, allowing you to fully develop your skills as both artist and communicator. During your senior year, you will be required to present a final thesis project that relates to your major. This is referred to as your senior thesis project.

In some ways, the senior thesis program at Cedar Crest follows a graduate-level model: First, we allow you the freedom to choose and develop your own topic. Second, you are required to submit a proposal of your chosen topic and gain approval from a grading committee of faculty members of your own choosing. Yet, because this program is an undergraduate program, you will also receive any necessary support and guidance from the performing arts faculty, enabling you to successfully complete your project and develop your understanding of the arts as a whole.

There are many ways in which you will prepare for your senior thesis before you actually select your topic.

Communicating About Your Art

From the start of your sophomore year, you will be exposed to a variety of projects completed by other students at the junior and senior level. The exposure allows students to experience other interpretations on the arts and in turn develop their own personal viewpoints.

Once each month, students and faculty convene for First Friday, a program that provides students the experience of articulating their work to a larger audience. By participating in First Friday programs, you will learn to research and present your ideas to faculty and peers. As you progress artistically, you will also learn to express the aesthetics of your work and communicate their purpose to others.

Benefiting from Faculty Mentoring

One benefit of Cedar Crest College is the personal attention you will receive from the faculty due to our smaller class sizes and student-faculty ratio. The performing arts department encourages you to take full advantage of this benefit by providing you with the option of choosing a faculty member to mentor you starting your first year, eventually leading up to your senior thesis project. While you explore your project, your faculty mentor will provide constructive feedback and advice for research. Even though you are given the freedom to create your own topic and presentation, you will always be able to draw upon assistance from the faculty and support from peers.

Exploring Additional Fields of Interest

Many students in performing arts cross their artistic interests with other areas of study on campus. With many double majors and minors within the department, many students choose to combine those interdisciplinary studies, developing all academic interests and enhancing their views on the arts as a whole.