Head of Media Arts Program Retiring After 25 Years at Wesley

By Brian Baker and Warren GrossThe Whetstone

Dr. Michael Nielsen will retire at the conclusion of this semester after teaching at Wesley College for 25 years.

Nielsen created the Media Arts department practically from scratch.

“It was weird to come to Wesley because the courses were odd,” Nielsen said. “I had to remake the program and change it around. It was a combo of speech communications and media.”

It started to become clear to Dr. Nielsen that most of the 30 communication majors were interested in media courses and not the speech classes so he went out and created the Media Arts program.

Throughout his life, Nielsen said he always loved the media. At a young age, he was introduced to media because of his love for his tape recorder.

Dr. Michael Nielsen

Dr. Michael Nielsen

He both taught and attended graduate school at the University of Illinois.

“I got a job at the University of Illinois just showing movies and I got into movies because of that,” he said. “I got free grad school because I worked at the school. “

Nielsen found a job teaching at Florida Atlantic University.

“That’s where I met my wife,” Nielsen said. “She was working in the same department.”

“We both knew we weren’t going to be tenured so and so we moved up here to Dover to get jobs and we have enjoyed our time here. She’s currently retired but she was a professor at Delaware State University.”

Nielsen said he has enjoyed teaching at Wesley for the last 25 years.

He bought a new home in the area with his wife and will continue playing music and being involved with the Buddhist meditation group here in Dover.

Nielsen owns a summer cottage in Nova Scotia and enjoys the scenery and the music in the area.