Boston's Emerson College announced on Wednesday that it will be offering the very first four-year Bachelor of Fine Arts, Major in Comedic Arts degree by 2016, ABC News reports.
Students who will enter the program will be learning about the history and theories of comedy. They will also be given practical teachings that would equip them in perfecting the art of performance, writing and production.
The program will be hands-on, according to Martie Cook, the chairwoman of Emerson's visual and media arts department. "If you want to be a sitcom writer, we are going to take you through sitcom writing, and you will walk out of here with several scripts in your hand that you can then show to agents and producers, so you actually have a portfolio," she told the Boston Globe.
Cook also said that the students can expect familiar guest lecturers in its class, as their faculty members remain active in the business of laughter. Many famous comedians in Hollywood today are graduates of Emerson College, such as Jay Leno, Dennis Leary, Bill Burr and Harris Wittels. "The plan is that we will also be offering master classes and events with a lot of event speakers," Cook added.
Back in 2014, Emerson already offered a minor academic program called "Comedy: Writing and Performance," according to The College Fix. By creating a four-year major degree, the college said that is heeding to the "marked rise of comedy's impact on American culture and its global influence," ABC News reported.
Ryan Doon, a well-known Boston comedian said in the same Boston Globe report that had the course been offered during his time as a student, he would have taken it. However, he also said, "If you want to be a stand-up comedian, don't go to college. Work at a Starbucks and do open mikes every single night. It's the best way. If someone is in a position where they can pay for college and do open mikes that would be ideal."