What can I do with a major in Dance?

OCCUPATIONAL OVERVIEW:

Dancers express ideas, stories, rhythm, and sound with their bodies. They use a variety of dance forms that allow free movement and self-expression, including classical ballet, modern dance, ballroom, and culturally specific dance styles. UVU offers bachelor degrees preparing students for both graduate work and professional careers in and out of the dance world.

EMPLOYMENT REQUIREMENTS:

Students develop wide-ranging skills that can be applied in a wide range of occupations, including the performing arts. “The dance major’s presentation skills, ability to perform in public, and control of the body provides a solid basis for working effectively with others. Dance also develops the ability to concentrate intensely, listen introspectively, observe keenly, solve problems creatively, think critically, collaboratively develop a project, work independently, work under pressure, meet deadlines, and maintain composure when faced with the unexpected” (from University of Texas – Austin Fine Arts Career Services website). A bachelor's degree is typically the minimum formal education required. Some areas may require a graduate degree, or may assist employment in highly competitive areas.

SOME COMMON EMPLOYERS OF DANCE GRADUATES:

  • University theatre/dance troupes
  • Touring companies
  • Industrial shows
  • Colleges/universities
  • Television networks
  • Advertising agencies
  • TV/film studios
  • Magazines/newspapers
  • Performing arts centers
  • Cruise lines
  • Schools (K-12 public and private)
  • Theatre companies (local, regional, national)
  • Nonprofit arts/dance organizations
  • Private arts/dance organizations
  • Arts councils/cultural organizations
  • Government (local, federal, state)
  • Rehabilitation facilities
  • Nursing homes
  • Treatment/counseling centers
  • Medical facilities
  • Wellness/alternative health care centers
  • Dance studios/schools
  • Recreation facility
  • Community-based agencies

COMMON GRADUATE SCHOOL OPTIONS FOR DANCE MAJORS:

MFA (choreography, performance) or MA (dance scholarship, therapy, teaching, history, criticism, arts management). Students interested in obtaining a graduate degree may also be interested in such professional programs as law or the MBA, amongst others.

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS:

Professional associations or organizations can be a great way to meet, learn from and network with professionals in your field of interest. Inexpensive student memberships are often available. These are only a sampling of professional associations. Be sure to search for others that may be applicable or helpful.

TRANSFERABLE SKILLS:

A liberal arts degree in general, reflects a comprehensive education emphasizing analytical skills, critical thinking and communication skills; abilities in high demand for all employers. Concentrating your studies in a major allows you to also gain specific transferable skills of interest to particular employers and industries. Graduates with a major in Dance are attractive to employers due to their abilities in the following areas:

  • Creativity
  • Ability to execute creative decisions
  • Possess a strong grasp of the creative process
  • Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneous
  • Possess unique perspectives on issues
  • Ability to make critical observations and evaluations
  • Possess a wide body of general knowledge
  • Ability to feel comfortable with scrutiny and criticism
  • Ability to observe and analyze introspectively
  • Feel at ease in new situations
  • Ability to adapt ideas to different audiences
  • Strong skills in physical, oral and written expression
  • Ability to think clearly and form arguments
  • Comprehensive knowledge of anatomy and movement
  • Sensitivity to others' artistic expression
  • Ability to create interesting associations between ideas
  • Ability to teach others using creative methods
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Possess strong technical skills (e.g. physical movements, writing, computer)
  • Possess a high level of discipline and internally motivated work ethic
  • Knowledge of popular culture and artistic events
  • Ability to execute visual ideas into concrete products

OTHER POSITIONS RELATED TO DANCE:

Please note that some of these positions require an advanced degree. For more information and descriptions of these careers, visit O*NET On-line.

  • Actor
  • Artist-in-Residence
  • Arts Administrator/Educator/Manager
  • Arts Education Consultant
  • Ballet Mistress/Master
  • Benesh, Laban Notator
  • Body Conditioning Instructor
  • Booking Agent
  • Choreographer
  • City Arts Director
  • College Professor
  • Consultant
  • Commercial Photographer
  • Community Development Officer
  • Community Theatre Owner
  • Company Dancer
  • Company Director
  • Corporate Trainer
  • Costumer
  • Dance & Art Therapist
  • Technical Designer (costumes/lighting)
  • Dance Studio Manager/Instructor
  • Dance Teacher
  • Director Drama Teacher
  • Fundraiser
  • Grants Specialist
  • Gymnastics Coach
  • K-12 Teacher
  • Leisure & Recreation Instructor
  • Manager/Supervisor
  • Massage Therapist
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Performance Artist
  • Personnel Manager
  • Press Agent, Public Relations Manager
  • Private Teacher
  • Producer
  • Psychologist
  • Yoga/Pilates Instructor