About The Dean
Teri Schwartz is the dean of the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television (TFT), where she has launched an exciting new vision and long-range strategic plan that re-imagines entertainment and performing arts education as an interdisciplinary enterprise that is grounded in humanistic storytelling, global diversity and innovation.
Appointed in July 2009, and in collaboration with students, faculty staff and key stakeholders, Dean Schwartz has taken her unique vision by forging a dynamic strategy for the entire entertainment and performing arts educational enterprise through new innovative interdisciplinary programs, initiatives and courses that tear down the silos across disciplines and bring film, theater, television, digital media and animation into a collaborative new direction for the 21st century.
Under Dean Schwartz’ leadership, TFT is cultivating important industry partnerships and alliances; strengthening and energizing TFT’s highly successful alumni network and Executive Board; fostering key initiatives for social responsibility with companies such as Participant Media; launching new cutting-edge programs at the intersection of digital, storytelling, performance and research with partners such as Cirque du Soleil, Google, YouTube and Cisco; helping to recruit exceptional new faculty; securing distinguished visiting artists; and nurturing and developing outstanding diverse student talent to be the leaders, storytellers and scholars of the future who will use the power of their stories, performances and research to make a difference in the world. To that end, Dean Schwartz is launching new full-ride and partial-ride scholarships to give access and opportunity to the most talented and diverse array of students; securing important paid fellowships and key internships; and creating new mentoring and festival strategy programs for all TFT students. In addition, she has plans for two new research centers and for several new endowed chairs. Dean Schwartz is leading the first-ever major endowment and capital campaigns for TFT to ensure its long-range pre-eminence and leadership across the entertainment and performing arts educational landscape under the banner: Creating What’s Next.
Prior to joining UCLA’s TFT, Dean Schwartz successfully served from 2003 to 2009 as the founding dean of the Loyola Marymount University School of Film and Television in Los Angeles.
Without question, Dean Schwartz loves to create and build and is very skilled at getting things done. Her dedication to excellence is tireless and her accomplishments span an illustrious career. An award-winning feature film producer, Schwartz’ films, which include 1988’s “Beaches” and 1992’s “Sister Act,” have garnered nominations for Academy®, Golden Globe, Emmy®, Grammy®, MTV and CLIO® Awards. She is a member of the Producers Guild of America, Directors Guild of America, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and serves on the Board of Directors for the Television Academy Foundation, the Geffen Playhouse and the Hawn Foundation. She is also on the Savannah Film Festival Advisory Board and Demand Media’s Education Advisory Board, and is a member of the Los Angeles Theater Alliance Board of Governors, the Governing Council of the Los Angeles-India Film Council and the Board of Directors of the Women’s Media Center (WMC). Dean Schwartz has also served on numerous panels and festival juries including the Palm Springs International Film Festival, the Palm Springs International Shortfest, and the Monte Carlo International Television Festival. She has been a keynote speaker at the Skoll World Forum, Oxford, UK; the FICCI Frames International Media Conference, Mumbai, India; and the Alexandrinsky Theatre Festival, St. Petersburg, Russia, amongst others.
A native of Los Angeles, Dean Schwartz graduated magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa in English Literature from UCLA in 1971 and received her M.A. in film from the University of London in 1973.
Dean Schwartz is an optimistic, imaginative and dynamic leader who passionately believes in the power of entertainment and performing arts education as a way to foster remarkable emerging talent who will use their success and their works to enlighten, engage and inspire change for a better world. She has dedicated this chapter of her life to this goal and considers it a privilege and honor to do so. She is proud to be an alumna of UCLA and inspired to serve in her role as dean of TFT.