From the Stage to the Classroom
Tracy Young describes the theater as her love throughout her life. Prior to joining Antioch University Seattle as a Bachelor of Arts student in Liberal Studies, Young had a thriving career as a theater director and playwright. In fact, the Los Angeles native was the first female director in an L.A.-based male-dominated theater company.
Despite her success on the stage, however, Young knew that she wanted to make education a priority she just wasn’t sure how. She took theater and film courses in San Francisco at community college before launching her career in L.A., but once she began traveling around to direct theater shows she wondered when she would find the time to stop working and go to school.
Young’s love of teaching and working with young people in the theater helped her make her way back to the classroom. “Teaching opportunities would come my way but I couldn’t get a teaching gig without a degree,” she said.
After learning about Antioch University Seattle’s BA completion programs, Young decided to visit the campus. “The first time I came here, I felt this place had something to offer me,” she said.
Young enrolled in Antioch’s Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program, where she has flourished in a rich educational environment that she believes fosters critical thinking skills.
“Antioch’s learner-centered approach is a gymnasium for developing critical thinking skills,” she observed. “Students aren’t simply taught what to think; they’re encouraged to think for themselves and to articulate their thoughts and positions in detailed and well-considered ways.”
Young also values the holistic approach she is reaping from her Liberal Studies education. “A broader, horizontal learning experience grows your awareness of the larger world and allows you to bring it to your field,” she said.
Young was drawn to Antioch’s historical roots of inclusivity, such as being the first college to welcome people of color as well as the first to hire women as full time instructors. “This place was valuing inclusion before other places. That, to me, is a huge badge of pride. That’s what I want to be connected to and engaged with.”
Receiving her degree will be a significant personal achievement, but beyond that, Young is looking forward to pursuing work and teaching opportunities in the future that require a degree. She also notes that she is enjoying learning at Antioch so much that she may decide to continue on there to receive a Master’s of Arts degree.