Emily Quinn’s childhood dream wasn’t to become a professor at USD. Her dream was more set on the silver screen.
As a marketing instructor, Quinn is an advocate for embracing the change in aspirations while still achieving her childhood dreams. Quinn uses her performing skills not only on the stage, but in the classroom at the Beacom School of Business.
Quinn grew up in Peoria, Illinois, born into the world with the desire to perform. She graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts with an associate’s degree in acting, followed by a theater degree from Gustavus Adolphus.
Before teaching at USD, Quinn lived in Minneapolis working as an actress until she desired to work behind the camera with project management, web development
“Academia was not necessarily in my sights as a career, but I got to a certain point in my career where I felt the calling to share my experiences and hopefully guide some of the younger generations,” Quinn said. “My career has always been about taking something from the very start and leading it through to the end; concept to completion.”
Between teaching and acting, Quinn finds correlations, she said.
“I think that what I am trying to do in the classroom is the same as when I was an actress, which is to tell the right story,” Quinn said.
Quinn teaches Marketing Business Administration, where she educates students about principle and foundations of marketing, and Digital Marketing, focused on multi-platform aspects of business. She teaches on-campus, online and in Sioux Falls.
Junior Ally Osterloo, a former student of Quinn’s, said Quinn uses her past work in performance to connect with her students.
Quinn’s performance background isn’t exclusive to the classroom. She performs with an improvisational comedy group, Improv Falls, out of Sioux Falls.
“We’ve performed for tour groups from Fargo where the average age was about 94 to local restaurants,” Quinn said. “Anywhere there is a stage, we will figure out a performance that will please the audience.”
December will mark Quinn’s second year full-time at USD, she said she’s thoroughly enjoyed her experiences and is excited for the future ahead of her. It’s not exactly her childhood
“Use your intuition,” Quinn said. “Listen to the accolades you are getting and ask yourself if there may be other career paths that you could succeed at.”