Peter Johnson ’90
Class of 1990
Major/Minor: Drama and Business Management
The experiences I had at Washington College, both inside and outside the classroom, provided me multiple opportunities to learn how to process information and make decisions.
How has your liberal arts education influenced you? How do you apply your LAE in your current career?
My Washington College education was instrumental in my current career. In my role as the head of Human Resources for a 10,000 employee company, I am routinely called upon to navigate through uncertainty and make decisions with limited information. The experiences I had at Washington College, both inside and outside the classroom, provided me multiple opportunities to learn how to process information and make decisions. I was also given an avenue to experiment and discover that there is rarely only one way to solve a problem.
Who was your favorite faculty/staff member? Story?
Timothy Maloney, now a retired former chair of the Drama Department, was the most important and influential educator at Washington college or any other school I ever attended. He was constantly asking me questions, forcing me to think about a problem and determine the direction to head. His aim was always to help me better understand the issue at hand before crafting the solution. In Playwriting class, he didn’t tell me my play was bad or there was something wrong with it (even though I now realize the play I wrote wasn’t very good!). But he would challenge me to better understand writing decisions I was making and the consequences of those decisions – so I could make a determination if they were yielding the outcome I wanted.
Did your Senior Capstone Experience (or thesis project) have a major influence on your future career or your personal growth? If so, please explain what your SCE entailed and how it influenced who or where you are today.
I was a double major in Drama and Business Management. My Business thesis taught me practical skills about business and finance and my Drama thesis was a real world application of those skills. I produced and directed “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.” I had to hire the cast and crew for the show, manage a budget, deal with competing time and resource commitments, provide and receive feedback along the way, and ultimately deliver a finished production in a fixed time frame.