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As a Coker dance major, expect to explore and grow as an artist while gaining practical guidance toward achieving your career goals.

Coker’s discussion-based, round table learning environment encourages interactive coursework that pushes you to develop your perspective as a dancer and effectively communicate your ideas to an audience. Personalized courses are integrated with performances and learning opportunities outside of the classroom—including international performances, conferences and visits from renowned guest artists. Whether you dream of becoming a professional performer, dance educator or dance therapist, Coker’s program will prepare you to succeed.

 

 

 

MISSION

In keeping with the mission of Coker College and the Dance, Music and Theatre Department, the Dance Program is committed to providing a well-rounded, student centered learning experience rich in dance technique, choreography, theory, and performance. Grounded in engaged teaching, our faculty create an environment that encourages students to cultivate their technical, artistic, creative, and scholarly abilities. Study in dance as an academic discipline integrates inquiry and theory to develop skills in observation, critical thinking, problem solving, and evaluation. We believe each student has the potential to reach their goals as a performer, choreographer, dance educator, movement therapist/analyst, or dance advocate. We strive to develop thoughtful and active artists in the classroom, studio, and world.

Dance Major

The core of the dance major consists of 39 semester hours in modern and ballet techniques, composition, dance history, improvisation, dance science, rhythmic analysis, and other supporting courses.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Performance and Choreography (Audition Only)

The BFA degree in Performance and Choreography offers intensive professional training that prepares students for careers as performers and choreographers by offering classes and experiences to work directly with nationally recognized guest artists, faculty and in the Coker Repertory Dance Company, as well as ample opportunities for students to show their own creative work. Students will take at least 75 semester hours of courses with a specific focus on courses in dance technique, performance and composition. The expectation is to develop skills and competencies at a higher level in preparation for careers as performing and creative artists. This enables the student to not only dance skillfully and artistically, but also to discuss and analyze dance in a scholarly manner, ensuring that graduates in dance are prepared both for performance-related work and for additional study at the graduate level.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance/Movement Therapies (Audition Only)

This degree is intended for students interested in careers using dance as a form of therapy for various populations. In addition to the core major courses, students will take at least 75 semester hours of courses including Introduction to Dance Movement Therapies, Injury Prevention, and electives in areas of interest. Students may choose specializations including children with special needs, individuals with emotional disorders, physical rehabilitation, injury prevention, and others.

Graduates with this degree must complete a graduate program in dance/movement therapies to become certified as a dance movement therapist.

Bachelor of Arts in Dance Education with K-12 Teaching Certification (Audition Only)

This degree is for students wishing to teach dance in the K-12 public or private school setting. In addition to the core major courses, students pursuing the Dance Education track will take at least 75 semester hours of courses including Dance Teaching Methods, Creative Dance, World Dance Forms and other courses through the Wiggins School of Education. Students will have meaningful experiences observing and assisting certified dance educators in the public schools, culminating in a student teaching experience in their final semester. Graduates with this degree will be certified by the South Carolina Department of Education to teach in the K-12 school system.

Bachelor of Arts in Dance

The BA degree in dance is designed for students wishing to pursue broad-based dance-related careers. Graduates with this degree may go on to teach in dance studios, graduate study, arts administration, or performance careers. This degree is also ideal for students interested in a double major or exploring elective courses.

Dance Minor

A minor in dance includes 19 semester hours of dance courses, including dance history, ballet technique, modern dance technique, dance conditioning, dance composition and dance improvisation.

Download the Academic Catalog

For a more detailed explanation of requirements, including course descriptions, download the Academic Catalog.

Dance majors learn much more than how to dance. In addition to strong technical and artistic training, dance majors learn discipline, independent thinking, teamwork and creative problem solving—skills that apply to a wide range of career paths.

Graduates of Coker College have danced professionally with companies in New York, Los Angeles, and other major cities as well as performed in cruise ship productions, theme parks, regional musical theatre productions, and various regional dance concerts. Graduates have also gone on to teach in higher education, the K-12 school systems and in private studios.

After graduating from Coker College, students have gone on to study for advanced degrees in Dance Performance and Choreography, Dance Education, Dance Therapy, Arts Administration, and Nutrition at various higher education institutions.

For more information on potential career paths, click here.

Examples of alternate career paths you can follow with your dance degree:
  • Dancer
  • Choreographer
  • Dance Company Manager
  • Dance Teacher
  • Dance Studio Owner
  • Dance Writer
  • Production Manager
  • Tour Manager
  • Dance Therapist
  • Dance Critic
  • Artistic Director
  • Stage Manager
  • Lighting Designer
  • Talent Agent
  • Costume Designer
  • Editor
  • Lobbyist
  • Promoter
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Publicist
  • Advertising Specialist
  • Director of Arts Advocacy Agency
  • Sales/Marketing Representative
  • Community Relations Director
  • Director of Arts Council
  • Special Events Coordinator
Graduates of Coker College have gone on to pursue a graduate degree at a number of institutions, including but not limited to:
  • Florida State University
  • University of South Carolina
  • Winthrop University
  • Sarah Lawrence College
  • Antioch College
  • Annual Faculty & Guest Artist Concert
  • Student Choreography Concert
  • Informal Dance Concert (each semester)
  • Coker Repertory Dance Company
  • Senior Thesis Concert
  • Musical Theatre Performances
  • Student:Faulty ratio 10:1
  • Professional Training
  • Scholarship Awards
  • Paid Work Opportunities
  • Studies Abroad
  • Conference Attendance/Performances
  • Nu Delta Alpha National Dance Honor Society
  • Mainstage Theater
  • Black Box Theater
  • Two dance studios
  • Pilates Reformer Equipment
  • Urban Bush Women
  • Doug Varone
  • David Dorfman
  • International Choreographers

At Coker, students benefit from classes taught by accomplished professors who are invested in each student’s success. From day one, you’ll find personalized support and guidance from dedicated faculty members. In class, dance majors receive one-on-one attention and artistic feedback. Outside of the classroom, professors help place students in internships, locate auditions and prepare for graduate school.

Coker’s dance professors want their students to be successful and work diligently to help them achieve their goals in dance. Professors will ask you to push yourself outside of your comfort zone—but you’ll end up a stronger dancer and better artist because of it.

Faculty

Angela M. Gallo, M.F.A.
Associate Professor of Dance; Chair of the Department of Dance, Music and Theatre; Coordinator of the Dance Program
 Kristin Hapke
Assistant Professor of Dance; Director of Coker Repertory Dance Company
 Meredith Sims
Assistant Professor of Dance; Coordinator of the Dance Education Program