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Meet Carthage Theatre Alumni

  • Magdalene Spanuello ’07

    • Current Position: 

      Director, choreographer, adjunct music theatre instructor at Carthage College, and artistic director of Shawnee Summer Theatre

    • Major(s): Music Theatre, Political Science

    “Having a ‘Comprehensive Plan A’ is a must for every student leaving Carthage. It is unrealistic to think that if you don’t jump into a career in theatre immediately after graduation, it means you never will or that you have failed. … Stay focused and persevere.”

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  • Drew Lenox ’10

    • Current Position: 

      MFA Student at University of Illinois

    • Major(s): Theatre

    “Carthage taught me to be an independent artist.”

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  • Annie Hogan ’06

    • Current Position: Marketing Assistant
    • Major(s): Theatre and English

    “Not everyone has to work at Steppenwolf to be fulfilled. Don’t let other people’s expectations of you dictate how you honestly feel about theatre.”

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  • Derek Nelson ’12

    • Current Position: Acting Apprentice at Actors Theatre of Louisville
    • Major(s): Theatre

    “If you want to do theatre, go out and do it. Make your own path.”

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  • Thomas Novak ‘11

    • Current Position: Freelance Actor and Teaching Artist
    • Major(s): Theatre Performance and Directing
    • Minor(s): Dance

    “Take the time to learn anything and everything. Once you’re out of school it’s harder to take the time to study or take classes post-college.”

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  • Alex Campea ’13

    • Current Position: 

      Freelance Actor

    • Major(s): Theatre Performance, Music Theatre

    “Carthage taught me that in order to be successful in the ‘real world,’ you have to immerse yourself in more than one area of the field in which you study.”

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  • Elodie Senetra ‘13

    • Current Position: 


    • Major(s): Theatre Performance

    “I will always appreciate and look back on my time at Carthage with delightful memories. My incredible professors prepared me for the ‘real world’ by always encouraging me to challenge myself, take risks, and network, network, network.”

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  • Breannin Beelow ‘13

    • Current Position: Working at First Stage Theatre in Milwaukee.
    • Major(s): Music Theatre, Theatre Performance

    “If it wasn’t for the professors, I would not be where I am today.”

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  • Hannah Binish ‘10

    • Current Position: Freelance Stage Manager and Assistant Stage Manager
    • Major(s): Theatre

    “Never give up on your dreams. If you believe you can do something, do it.”

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  • Daniel Ermel ’11

    • Current Position: 

      Choral Director at Lakes Community High School, Lake Villa, Illinois

    • Major(s): Music Theatre and Music Education

    “The well-roundedness of the program at Carthage was extremely beneficial to my success. I didn’t just perform. I learned to build sets, to sew costumes, to direct one-acts. I spent a J-Term studying the wildlife in the Costa Rican rainforest. Carthage made me so much more than just an actor or a musician; it made me a person.”

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  • Rachel Page ’10

    • Current Position: 

      Performer, pianist, and vocal instructor

    • Major(s): Music Theatre

    “I think the best thing Carthage has to offer is its professors. I felt like each one of my professors had my well being in mind. I felt like I was an individual personality, not just a face in a class. My professors always made time for me, even when they weren’t in my major. I could stop in an office and contemplate life or assignments and then make jokes about both. I owe a lot to my mentors.”

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  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2019), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has been named a top producer of Fulbright Fellows three years running: 2015-2016, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $1.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …