I have been a freelance percussionist in central Wisconsin for 25 years. My work includes orchestral performances with the Fox Valley Symphony, Wisconsin Philharmonic Orchestra, Weidner Philharmonic and more. I also have been the percussionist on the national tours of Broadway shows including runs of “Wicked,” “Newsies,” “Anastasia,” and “West Side Story.” I maintain a private studio and have been the clinician at high schools around the state.
- Ph.D. from UW-Milwaukee
- M.A. in communication and socilology, Northern Illinois University
- B.S. from Northern Illinois University
I earned my Ph.D. in communication with an emphasis in rhetorical studies and media criticism from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. My areas of research include fandom, music and religious identity, and popular culture. I’ve published research on Christian heavy metal music, the political and public backlash against The Dixie Chicks, an overview of the culture wars, and the politics pertaining to comic book censorship. I enjoy media; collecting physical media such as DVDs and blu rays for my home film library; reading with favorite authors including Patrick Rothfuss, Stephen King, Cormac McCarthy and Jasper Fforde; and fishing. I spend my summer fishing for walleye, bass and pike in the Upper Peninsula with my wife’s family, and for salmon out of Algoma.
- Ph.D., Research Methodology Concentration, Saint Louis University, School of Nursing
- M.S., Adult Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing, University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Nursing
- B.S.N., Illinois Wesleyan University
- M.A., Ph.D., Stanford University
- B.A., Macalester College
- DMA, University of Colorado – Boulder
- MM, University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee
- B.A., Marian University
Paul Thompson is Director of Choral Activities at Ripon College in Ripon, WI. He previously lived in Moscow, ID, where he served as Director of Choral Activities at the University of Idaho, Director of Music at the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Palouse, and Artistic Director and Conductor of the Palouse Choral Society. Thompson has also been a member of the choral faculty at Francis Marion University, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and the University of Wisconsin-Manitowoc, and spent four years directing the choirs at St. Mary’s Springs High School in Fond du Lac, WI.
In 2016, Thompson completed his DMA in Choral Conducting and Literature at CU-Boulder, where his TA duties included directing two vocal jazz ensembles, working with several choirs, and assisting in the teaching of undergraduate conducting. During this time, he won first place in the 2016 SWACDA Graduate Conducting Competition. Thompson also holds a MM in Choral Conducting from UW-Milwaukee, and a B.A. in Voice from Marian University in Fond du Lac, WI.
Thompson’s primary research interest is in the area of conducting pedagogy. His current focus is an attempt to inform and re-frame non-verbal musical communication using ideas from Information Theory and Bloom’s Taxonomy, a topic on which he has been invited to give workshops and presentations across the country. He is also working to integrate ideas from Servant Leadership into his conducting and methods pedagogy.
Thompson is an active participant in the furtherance of choral music throughout the country, frequently appearing as a clinician and honor choir director. He has served as registration chair for the WCDA State Conference, and currently serves as coordinator for Singing in Wisconsin. Also active as a singer, he has appeared as a soloist with the Boulder Philharmonic, The King’s Counterpoint, The North Carolina Baroque Orchestra, The Green Lake Festival, Bach Festival Florence, and the Florence Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he has appeared as a guest artist with Vocal Tapestry, Present Music in Milwaukee, and as a performer on the Yolanda Marculescu Vocal Arts Series.
Paul Dietrich has been described as “an apt bandleader, an exception composer, and a superlative performer” (All About Jazz) and “a skilled composer” (JazzTrail) and his music has been praised as “stunningly beautiful” (Audiophile Audition) and “captivating” (Chicago Jazz Magazine).
A composer, trumpet player and educator based in the Midwest, Dietrich has led the Paul Dietrich Quintet since 2012 and the Paul Dietrich Jazz Ensemble since 2016. The Chicago-based Quintet has released two albums: Focus (2017, ears&eyes) and We Always Get There (2014, Blujazz). The Paul Dietrich Jazz Ensemble’s 2019 album Forward features guest artist and world-renowned drummer Clarence Penn (Dave Douglas, Maria Schneider) alongside many of the Midwest’s best jazz musicians.
As a composer, Dietrich has completed over a dozen commissions for schools and organizations including the Isthmus Jazz Festival, Lawrence University’s Jazz Weekend, Ripon College, Madison College, the Mount Horeb Middle School Jazz Festival, and various high schools throughout Wisconsin. He is a two-time recipient of the Greater Madison Jazz Consortium’s Artistic Development Grant.
Paul holds a Bachelor’s degree in trumpet and jazz studies from Lawrence University and a Master’s degree in Jazz Studies from DePaul University. As an educator, Paul has directed the Jazz Ensemble at Ripon College since 2021, and served as co-trumpet instructor with his wife, Jessica Jensen, while filling in for his former teacher, John Daniel, at Lawrence University in 2021. Previously, Paul taught at Prairie Music & Arts in Sun Prairie, WI, and directed the jazz ensemble at Madison East High School.
I’m originally from Las Vegas, Nevada. Most of my work involves creating theatrical encounters that conjure a sense of enthusiasm and social responsibility. I received my bachelor’s degree in theatre from the University of Northern Colorado and an MFA in theatre from Ohio State University. In addition to being an educator, I am a solo performing artist, actor and director. Currently, I’m touring my solo performance ‘The OREO Complex,” a multi-disciplinary art experience that explores the politics of racial performance by investigating the complexities of black identity.
As Director of Lane Library I connect students to the collections, spaces and library services they need for academic growth and success. This means providing books and articles from the world’s best scholars, making innovative spaces like the Franzen Center possible, and working with students to help them navigate the flood of information available. Like many Ripon students, I was the first in my family to go to college. That’s one of the many reasons I find the additional services we provide, like chromebook and textbook check-outs as well as supporting open-educational resources so essential.
I currently teach information literacy as part of the Catalyst curriculum and have also taught courses on German language, culture and literature, the digital humanities, oral history as well as a half-marathon course.
Professionally, I am an active member of the Wisconsin Library Association as current co-chair of the Leadership Committee, co-chair of the Literary Awards committee as well as a past chair of the Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians. I also serve on two public library boards. My scholarship focuses on local history and culture.
- Ph.D. in Philosophy, Rutgers University
- B.A. in Liberal Arts, St. John’s College (Annapolis, MD)
- D.M.A., Flute Performance, Rutgers University
- M.M., Flute Performance, Rutgers University
- B.Mus. program (no degree), University of Illinois
- B.A., History/Social Studies Secondary Education, Rutgers College
- Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison
- M.S., University of Northern Iowa-Cedar Falls
- B.A., University of Northern Iowa-Cedar Falls
Nature has always been a central part of my life. I was lucky enough to turn this passion for the natural world into a career as a scientist and educator in the field of biology. My areas of research focus broadly on evolution, ecology and conservation. Specifically, I study a group of fascinating plants that inhabit some of the most inhospitable North American desert areas, the wild buckwheat (Eriogonum). Additionally, the complexity and rarity of the tallgrass prairie ecosystem have always interested me. Currently, students in my research lab at Ripon College are investigating the diversity of insect pollinators (bees, butterflies, etc.) in prairies of Wisconsin. There is still a lot we can learn from the species around us!
At Ripon College, I teach courses ranging from Introductory Biology and Environmental Studies to advanced courses in Plant Diversity, Flora and Vegetation, and Conservation Biology.
- Ph.D., Tufts University
- M.A., Tufts University
- B.A., Connecticut College
I started teaching at Ripon College in 2019, joining the math and computer science department with a specialty in applied mathematics. At Ripon, my teaching focuses on mathematical modeling (including modeling within courses like calculus), statistics and data analysis. I have also been able to do both modeling and research projects with senior math majors as part of their senior thesis.
Before coming to Ripon, I taught at Beloit College, and did research in computational neuroscience in Tokyo and Boston. My research includes action potential propagation across gap junctions (with applications to epilepsy), and neocortical processing during sleep. I use both mathematical modeling and data analysis extensively in my research.
While I was always drawn to math because I always loved puzzles, I also love music because I love to sing. While in college, I wanted to become an opera singer, and studied many languages and theater along that goal. I still sing, on occasion, and am always up for a puzzle or a game!
- D.Mus., University of Wisconsin-Madison
- M.Mus., University of Wisconsin-Madison
- M.Mus., Lawrence University
- D.Mus., University of Wisconsin-Madison
- M.Mus., University of Louisville
- B.Mus., Lawrence University
American soprano Erin Bryan has been praised for her “deft” operatic characterizations and a voice that is “a lyric soprano of exceptional beauty.” Recent engagements include Rosalinda (Die Fledermaus), Anne Sexton/#2 (Transformations), and the Governess (The Turn of the Screw), and she is featured as Young Anne/#1 on the recently released world-premiere recording of Conrad Susa’s Transformations. An advocate for new music, she enjoys frequent collaboration with living composers, including the Midwest premiere of Laura Schwendinger’s Kay Ryan Songs and the world premiere of Dangerous New Avenues, a chamber duet for soprano and percussion by Justin Giarrusso. She has just completed her second season with the innovative Fresco Opera of Wisconsin, where she was heard in works by Mozart, Verdi, Floyd, and Bellini.
Dr. Bryan holds degrees from Lawrence University, where she studied with Steven Spears and Patrice Michaels, and the University of Louisville, where she studied with Edith Davis Tidwell. She earned the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in vocal performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she studied with Paul Rowe. Her research concentration is largely in the area of vocal repertoire, with particular emphasis on eighteenth-century opera.
As a member of the music faculty at Ripon College, Dr. Bryan instructs courses in applied voice study, vocal pedagogy, lyric diction, and musicology, and she also enjoys regular collaboration with both the school’s choral program and the theatre department.