San Jacinto College theatre artistic director Dr. Jerry Ivins was named the 2023 Higher Education Educator of the Year by the Texas Education Theatre Association.

“I am deeply honored by the award,” said Ivins. “Seeing the past recipients, I am humbled to be included with these theatre educational giants.”

This prestigious recognition honors theatre educators who have made meaningful contributions to their field.

Texas Education Theatre Association's 2023 Higher Education Educator of the Year

Dr. Jerry Ivins

“Dr. Ivins’ dedication and passion for teaching have not only informed and inspired his colleagues but also nurtured the creativity and talent of countless students, setting the stage for the cultivation of the next generation of outstanding theatre artists and educators,” said Travis Springfield, Texas Education Theatre Association president.

Ivins has taught at San Jac for 28 years. He not only is the artistic director for the College’s Central Campus theatre program but is also heavily involved in the University Interscholastic League one-act play competition as a judge, an adjudicator, and a licensed contest manager. He runs two area and two regional contests and the state one-act play contest each year for 4A, 5A, and 6A schools. For the Texas Education Theatre Association, Ivins serves as the state theatre competition director of operations.

“My colleague at the University of Houston once said, ‘If something is happening in theatre education in Texas, Ivins either knows about it or is running it,'” he said. “I can’t help it — it’s my passion.”

And Ivins wouldn’t have it any other way. His passion stems from his own experience as a theatre student.

“Theatre saved my life. I couldn’t look anyone in the eye or speak to anyone. I joined the theatre to meet a girl, and it ended up being my life’s work,” he said. “It has provided me a safe haven. If I can do that for someone else, I’ve done what I needed to do.”

Ivins was honored at an awards ceremony Sept. 29 at the Moody Gardens Convention Center in Galveston.

Learn more about San Jac’s theatre and film programs.

By Melissa Trevizo