Dr. Merchant serves as Professor of Communication Arts on the faculty for the Theatre program. She earned her B.A. in Speech and Secondary Education at Cedarville College (1978) and taught high school English, theatre and speech in Elyria, Ohio for eight years. She conducted postgraduate work in theatre (Directing, Playwriting and Dramaturgy) at Kent State University, and completed her Ph.D. in Theatre Education at The Ohio State University in 1996. Coming first as an adjunct faculty member in 1986, Dr. Merchant assumed a full-time position at the College in 1989. She teaches Theatre History, Dramaturgy, Directing, Educational Theatre, Theatre of Social Change, Arts Administration, and the Professional Preparation Seminar for theatre majors. Dr. Merchant is a member of the professional labor union, the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, and maintains active memberships in the Association of Theatre in Higher Education, Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, and the American Allliance of Theatre in Education. She and her husband, Mahlon, have one son.