Jayme Host brings an infectious enthusiasm and high energy as the new director of the School of Theatre and Dance at East Carolina University.
She said she was drawn to the school because of its exceptional faculty, quality of students and stellar reputation.
“The theater world and the dance world is small, so you know where excellence resides,” Host said. “I’m excited to be in this position.”
Host brings 22 years of higher education experience to ECU, previously serving as professor and program head at Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania.
“Jayme comes to us with a great deal of experience in arts leadership,” said Dr. Chris Buddo, dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication. “In particular, she has been very active in building arts-based curricula and programs.”
Host has extensive experience in accreditation, fiscal sustainability and facilities and production management.
She said she maintains an “umbrella vision” to keep track of internships, academics and the ever-shifting job market for her students. “I hope to be a bridge from their collegiate life to professional life,” Host said.
Host will be the school’s third director since it began in 1963.
“Jayme is coming to us at a time of significant change for the School of Theatre and Dance,” Buddo said. “She has a record of being a force for positive change wherever she has been, and I am confident that she will be able to take our program to the next level. I am thrilled to have a her as a member of our college leadership team.”
Host served as a consultant for the Pennsylvania Department of Education and worked with the Maryland State Board of Education. As a teaching artist, she held residencies with the Maryland Artist Teacher Institute, the Prince George’s County Artist Teacher Institute, the 21st Century Teaching Institute and the Global Arts Integration Network.
She taught in residence at the Riverside International School in Prague, Czech Republic in 2016 and was invited to return as their dance scholar-in-residence.
“I’m an educator and artist at heart,” Host said.
She choreographed for the Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company of Salt Lake City, Utah, as well as the Momentum Dance Company from Panama. The University of Maryland-College Park commissioned her piece, “The Decadent Ball,” which was selected for performance on the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage.
A Sunbury, Pennsylvania, native, Host earned her bachelor’s degree at Goucher College and a master’s at the University of Utah. In addition to performing modern dance internationally, she taught at Goucher and was a certified dance teacher for a performing arts magnet high school in Baltimore County, Maryland, before joining Lock Haven.
Host and her husband, Andrew, have three children, Tanner, Talia and Jack.
(Some information provided from “Revue,” the College of Fine Arts and Communication annual publication).
–by Crystal Baity