Vice President for Academic Affairs & Associate Provost/
Professor of Theatre
Peter Senkbeil is Vice President for Academic Affairs, Associate Provost and Professor of Theatre at Concordia University Irvine, where he has held a faculty appointment since 1992. As a theatre artist, he has directed over 30 full-length plays, including Songs for a New World, Falling, Till We Have Faces, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Cherry Orchard, Much Ado about Nothing, The Iraq War Project (also co-author), Paper Wings, Cabaret, Working, and Joyful Noise. Recent acting credits include The Comedy of Errors, As You Like It, Twelfth Night, The Hiding Place, It’s a Wonderful Life, Shadowlands, and Metamorphoses. In 2004, Dr. Senkbeil received the Excellence in Education award from the Kennedy Center/American College Theater Festival. Dr. Senkbeil serves on the editorial board of Ecumenica, a journal that explores the relationships among performing arts, society and religious faith. He is a member of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) and a founding member of Christians in Theatre Arts (CITA), an international arts networking organization; he has served four terms on CITA’s board of directors.
Dr. Senkbeil earned his B.A. in Communication and Theatre from Concordia University–Chicago, and both his M.A. and Ph.D. in Theatre and Drama from Northwestern University. He completed his teacher colloquy program at Concordia University Irvine in 1998, and he has served as a Commissioned Minister of the Gospel in The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod since that time. His doctoral dissertation, entitled “Faith in Theatre: Professional Theatres Run by Christians in the United States and Canada and Their Strategies for Faith-Art Integration,” was completed in 1995. He has published several articles and given numerous presentations on topics related to Christianity and the arts, and he wrote the chapter on the arts for the book The Idea and Practice of a Christian University: A Lutheran Approach (Concordia Publishing House, 2015).
As Associate Provost, he plays a significant administrative role in faculty hiring and evaluation, academic program planning and implementation, accreditation and assessment. His direct reports include the Offices of Institutional Research and Assessment, Academic Advising, Academic Records (Registrar), Student Success, and the University Library. He has served as the university’s accreditation liaison officer since 2008, and he served as principal author and editor of Concordia’s interim accreditation reports to the Western Association of Schools and Colleges in 1999 and 2010, as well as its February 2013 institutional report, which resulted in a ten-year reaffirmation of the university’s accreditation in July 2014. He has served as Concordia’s Associate Provost since 2006; he served as an academic division chair from 2000 to 2005. Before coming to Concordia, he spent two years in the Detroit area, where he served as the artistic director of Trinity House Theatre, a community theatre in Livonia, Michigan. Dr. Senkbeil and his family are active members of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Orange, California.