Valparaiso University's administered study abroad programs have resident directors who manage the programs on a day-to-day basis, teach two courses for the students and coordinate group excursions and cultural activities. Since 1968, VU has sent 22 different faculty members, and their families, to the Cambridge, England program for two-year appointments.
Dr. Lee F. Orchard is Professor of Theatre and currently serving as Director of the Cambridge Study Centre in Cambridge, England for two years, 2015-2017. He received his Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Education from Concordia University Chicago, his Master of Arts in Theatre from Northwestern University, and his Doctor of Philosophy in Theatre Arts from the University of Oregon, where he served as acting pedagogue to Robert Barton, author of Acting: On Stage and Off. Dr. Orchard has taught and directed at the university level for more than 35 years, and in addition to his work at Valparaiso University, his professional credits include productions at Concordia University Seward, Concordia University Irvine, and Truman State University, where he was twice awarded The Order of Omega's Golden Apple Award, and twice selected as a semifinalist for Educator of the Year. Dr. Orchard is included in Who's Who Among America's Teachers and for four consecutive years has been the recipient of the Delta Delta Delta Certificate of Appreciation for Excellence in Teaching. He is a member of Alpha Psi Omega and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and an active participant in the American College Theatre Festival and the Association for Theatre in Higher Education.
Dr. Orchard’s teaching and research interests include Performance Pedagogy, Directing, Theatre and Culture, British Theatre, and Musical Theatre—in particular, the work of Stephen Sondheim. He has staged over eighty theatrical productions ranging from Greek tragedy to American musicals, from Shakespearean comedy to contemporary drama and has been invited to showcase work for the American College Theatre Festival, for which he has served a respondent since 1988. He has taught courses in Introduction to Theatre Arts, Acting, Acting Styles, Oral Interpretation, Creative Dramatics, History and Literature of the Theatre, Play Direction, Educational Outreach Theatre, Musical Theatre, and various theatre seminars, workshops and colloquia. He also taught for ten years on the faculty of the Joseph Baldwin Academy for Eminent Young Scholars, served as the Director of the Missouri-London Program and has led numerous study abroad courses in contemporary British drama and the London stage. During the 2016-2016 and 2016-2017 academic years, Dr. Orchard will serve as the Director of the Valparaiso University Cambridge Study Centre where he will also teach a course on the Theatre and Culture of England.
Dr. Orchard’s wife Peggy is a middle school guidance counsellor and his daughters, Alaina and Lauren, are proud Valpo alums. They love animals—in particular, their cats Sam and Wally, and enjoy traveling, the arts, baseball, and playing guitar.