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Help needed guiding dd - dance related


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#1 SquirrellyMama

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Posted 05 August 2017 - 12:20 PM

My oldest is going to be a hs junior this year, and I'm trying to help guide her in planning.

Here are her interests for future careers:
1. Dance (performance, teaching, choreography)
2. Fitness (teaching)
3. Swimming (coaching, lessons, lifeguarding)

For fitness and swimming there is a fairly clear path. There is a coaching certificate at our local CC. There is a 2 year fitness AA at that same CC, plus 4 year degrees at most 4 year colleges. Along with fitness certifications.

Dance is harder. I just don't see paying almost $80,000 for a dance degree. She could do a dance minor, but not sure if that would get her as far.


Who had dancers? I'd love to hear from people who had kids take different paths.

Kelly

#2 Diana P.

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Posted 05 August 2017 - 12:40 PM

Perhaps if you looked at schools that had dance departments and programs in the fitness field you might see overlap. People involved in dance need athletic training, rehabilitation, and nutrition.

Maybe she could pursue majors/minors and look for such overlaps.
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#3 Chanley

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Posted 05 August 2017 - 09:29 PM

What kind of dance? There is a different between pre-pro ballet and your hip-hop/jazz/ contemporary dancer. My daughter is not going to pursue a dance degree as a major because employment opportunities are limited. It has always seemed to us that dance in college was a completely different beast than dancing professionally. If she wants to dance professionally, have her dance. The professional life of a dancer is limited and short because it is a young person's game. Eventually, you go on to teaching and choreographing. Have her audition for Disney or for a company that staffs dancers on cruise ships if she wants to dance professionally. 

 

There are schools with excellent dance programs that offer great 4 year degrees. Has she considered a degree in kinesiology? Florida State has an excellent dance dept.  She could major in whatever she wanted and minor in dance. 


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#4 Diana P.

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 04:57 AM

If your DD has the opportunity to dance professionally or participate in a short term training then dance professionally and sh wants to do that give that choice serious consideration. Actually performing is a relatively short career. There's no reason to assume she cannot attend college or get training and certification after dance. Some training may be available to work on while she is dancing. Having had the experience may enhance her resume as she transition to the new field later. Additionally, starting college later means she may be out from having your income included in calculation of her financial need status.
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#5 SquirrellyMama

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 01:41 PM

Thanks! Yes, she does want to dance professionally. So far, her favorites are ballet and modern. But she also does jazz and tap. She's going to be starting Hip Hop and Funk this year.

 

Her plan A is to dance professionally for the amount of time she can. We both know it is short, so she wants to do that. I fully support that. I wasn't sure if that was possible. I like the idea of Disney or another place like that. I think she would enjoy it. I have a feeling her dance teacher will try to push toward dance education in college, and I wanted to know the other possibilities. 

 

Iowa State and U of I both have really good Kinesiology departments if she wants to go that way. Right now, she really doesn't want to do Athletic Training. I could see her going into Leisure Studies, it has a new name, but I can't think of it right now. An option with that degree would be to run recreational programs for places like the Y, or Boys and Girls Club, hospitals, rehab, etc...

 

Just checking to see if she would have to get a 4 year degree to go out and dance. I did see a 2 year program in NY. Per year it is the same price as a 4 year, but you get done in 2. I can see something like that. Then go back after dancing to get Fitness/Sports Mgmt. or Leisure Studies.

 

I'm just trying to get her to think of 2 or 3 plans in case one doesn't work out :) Which, by the way, is totally unlike me usually :) 

 

Anyway, thanks again! I just need reassurance now and again, and again, and again ;)

 

Kelly



#6 SquirrellyMama

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 01:45 PM

If your DD has the opportunity to dance professionally or participate in a short term training then dance professionally and sh wants to do that give that choice serious consideration. Actually performing is a relatively short career. There's no reason to assume she cannot attend college or get training and certification after dance. Some training may be available to work on while she is dancing. Having had the experience may enhance her resume as she transition to the new field later. Additionally, starting college later means she may be out from having your income included in calculation of her financial need status.

 

Got to say, this has been a real consideration for the path she wants to take. I feel a little guilty saying it. Due to financial issues my parents were not considered in my financial aid. It was very freeing for me, and they didn't have to take on even more debt for my education. 

 

Kelly


Edited by SquirrellyMama, 06 August 2017 - 01:45 PM.


#7 Chanley

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Posted 07 August 2017 - 12:06 AM

If she takes a path that takes her out of the dance studio, it will be SUPER hard to jump back in. I cannot tell you how many dancers I have seen that have gone on to do something else for a year or two and have found it really hard to get back with the same technique level. 

 

How serious is her dancing now? When she auditions for Disney or a cruise line, she will be competing for positions with dancers who spend a TON of time in the studio every week and many of them compete throughout school before college. My daughter spends about 15 hours a week at the studio. If your kid is not "this is the only thing I can ever do with my life" serious, I would steer her towards other venues. Also there is a college near Disney World that has lots of students who work for Disney. You may want to look into that. My daughter considered it when she was younger but did not make the minimum height requirements. She is too short to dance professionally for Disney or for a company that contracts with cruise lines. 

 

College dance groups are MUCH easier to get onto, the level of technique from what we have seen is much lower than professional dance teams which are ridiculously competitive. One of the kids from our studio dances for Princess Cruise lines now that he is grown. 



#8 DianeW88

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Posted 07 August 2017 - 06:42 PM

My dd is a professional ballerina. She received a full scholarship to her university for ballet, and received a BFA in ballet. She danced professionally while in college as well.  If your dd is naturally talented in ballet, she should be able to get a scholarship easily.  Has she attended any ballet summer programs with professional companies, and did she enjoy them? 

 

The field of ballet is ruthless and competitive for women, so whatever she can do to get a leg up early on is essential. Have her attend as many summer programs as she can in the coming two years (my dd usually attended two different ones each summer), and not at her home studio (unless she already studies at SAB or JKO, lol). Have her get letters of recommendation from the instructors, and attend programs where she is able to make serious connections in the ballet world. Make sure her teachers at her home studio are professional dancers (or former ones) who can give her advice based on real world experience. Having her participate in the YAGP competition is also a great way to see where she stands in relation to her competition. If she can make it to the finals in NYC, then I can almost guarantee she'll get a job as a ballet dancer if she wants it.

 

The great thing about ballet is, if you're good enough, all of your higher education will be paid for (if you decide to go the college route). My dd loved everything about being a ballet major in college, and going to college while dancing has made her a more mature, level-headed, and serious dancer. Her company director loves that!


Edited by DianeW88, 07 August 2017 - 06:44 PM.

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