Dance

10 Things Dance Majors Want You To Know

Ask me if I dance for football games one more time...

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Dance BFA programs are growing exponentially with the rise of dance careers available thanks to modern technology and social media. But, because a collegiate dance department is such a new idea, there are many misconceptions about people that choose to pursue a dance degree. As a student in a conservative, "office-job" region, I hear them daily: "What exactly do you plan to do with that kind of degree?" "Do you even have to work?" While it's tempted to be hurt by them, it's important to remember that most people ask these kinds of questions out of a lack of knowledge. So, what better way to remedy the problem than provide non-dance majors with some facts.

1. We know it's risky, you don't have to tell us.

We would not be spending 4+ years at a college of dance if we had not already weighed the costs. We're adults with the ability to make the life choices that are right for us. Telling us to "just go to PT school" doesn't help the situation, Bob.

2. Dance Department is NOT the same thing as Dance Team.

Both are great, but the dance team performs for seasonal sporting events, while dance majors earn a degree in what they do. Totally. Separate. Things. :)

3. Dance majors aren't a bunch of dumb blondes that aren't smart enough to do anything else.

Dance majors have amazing brains! We learn long combinations of movement in minutes, translate verbal queues into movement instantaneously, and are constantly aware of our surroundings. All of our knowledge may not come via textbook, but the university-level smarts are most certainly there!

4. We DO take gen-eds.

Unless you're a dance major at a highly-ranked conservatory, general education classes are part of getting that degree! We have to study, write papers and take tests just like everyone else. But, we're usually sporting a bun or workout clothes in class, so we're not hard to spot.

5. We are athletes, even though we are not considered college athletes

There is a lot of debate in the dance world around the issue of whether or not dance majors should receive the same benefits that most college athletes do. But, whatever side you stand on, it is undeniable that dancers with such dedication to their craft are athletes among the rest.

6. We (usually) don't attend competitions.

Unless it's a nationally broadcast show like "World of Dance", "SYTYCD", or "Dancing With The Stars", dance competitions are usually reserved for grade school students looking to get scholarship money or dance intensive opportunities. Collegiate-level dance is for personal growth and artistry, which is manifested in showcases, festivals, and other non-competitive performance opportunities.

7. "Dance class" doesn't mean "prance around for three hours."

Dance studios don't have desks, but our major still requires an insane amount of work. That work is simply more physically participatory. Contrary to popular belief, dance majors don't spend their days in tutus skipping from one end of the room to the other. It's more like standing in front of the mirror repeating a step again...and again...and again...until you get sick of it!

8. We have many, many career options.

Many people assume that dance majors can only teach in small dance studios or perform on cruise ships. While both of these professions are amazing dance jobs to have, there are many others available. Dance majors can become choreographers, dance company members, dance therapists, dance journalists, dance photographers, yoga instructors, managers, lecturers, and so much more! (Many dancers work more than one job in order to sustain income and maintain multiple skills.)

9. We have friends outside of our department.

Yes, we spend a lot of time with other dancers, but it's because we don't have a choice! A tight rehearsal schedule calls for hours spent with other dance majors, but everyone needs a break! Some dancers are in Greek organizations and social groups on their college campus. Others make friends in their gen-ed classes, apartment complexes, bible studies, etc.!

10. We're not snooty!

In my experience, dance majors are very open-minded and inclusive because they understand what it means to work in a restrictive, highly disciplined environment, and no one wants to live like that all day! We have a rep for being "above it all" as artists, but that heir of confidence is mostly reserved for performance aesthetic.

Now that you've been educated on the world of the collegiate dancer, you too can refrain from making dream-crushing statements about dance majors! Congrats!

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Everything The Student Athlete Loses When They Move On From Sports

Enjoy it while it lasts.

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We used to call it "flipping the switch." You would go through eight hours of school (somehow) and then your mentality would automatically change. The worries and stress from the school day would dwindle as you put on your cleats and begin to warm up. Anything that was going on in your life didn't matter when you hit the dirt. You create lifelong friendships with the girls you spent every day with for months at a time. Teammates who see you susceptible after a bad game and on cloud nine after one of your bests.

You develop a routine and superstitions. Hitting your bat on the inside of your cleat before you hit, chewing a certain type of gum on the volleyball court, how many times you spin the ball before you shoot a free throw, whatever your quirk was, you 100% believed it would make you play better. You practice in your free time with your dad, devote three to five months of your school year to a team, and play all summer long with your travel team as you live off hotel breakfast. Then one day, it's all over.

It is a feeling that nobody can prepare you for. They say enjoy it while it lasts but you never really understand what you'll be walking away from when you play your last game and hang it up for good. You lose a part of yourself when you're no longer an athlete. I forgot what it feels like to be competitive and be a part of something that is bigger than myself. It has been two years since I've played my last softball game and not a day goes by when I don't miss it. I didn't play because I wanted to go pro or even to the collegiate level, but I played because it was an escape and helped me become who I am.

You begin to forget what it felt like to hit the sweet spot on a bat, what it sounded like to have an audience cheer for you as you stand alone on second base and see your family in the stands, to hear the metal spikes of your cleats on concrete when walking in the dugout. It's simple things about the game you love that brought you pure joy and an escape from the world and the thoughts in your head. Batting practice was always mine. Focusing on nothing but the next pitch and how hard I could hit it.

When you have to watch the game from the other side of the fence, you realize how much pressure you put on yourself when you played. It's just a game. Make as many memories as you can and enjoy every inning because when you leave sports behind you have to find your inner athlete in other things. Create a workout routine, joining a club sport or intramurals, or even becoming a coach. As much as I miss the sport, I am thankful for everything it brought me. It taught me how to be a good friend, respect others around me, and to push myself to discover what I was capable of.

So, enjoy it while it lasts.

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Giannis Antetokounmpo And Christian Yelich Have Put Milwaukee Back On The Map

Two small market teams making sure the world knows who they are

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"MVP" is currently being chanted around the city of Milwaukee and the people of Milwaukee aren't just talking about one person. Giannis Antetokounmpo, a forward for the Milwaukee Bucks and Christian Yelich, an outfielder for the Milwaukee Brewers. Giannis is on the path to winning this year's NBA MVP and Yelich, who happened to win the NL MVP last year, is showing no doubts on potentially becoming this year's MVP as well.

Both the Bucks and the Brewers have struggled in the past few years. The Bucks finished their 2013-2014 season with a record of 15-67. On top of that, they have been playing in the BMO Harris Bradley Center for the past couple of decades. The Bradley Center was intentionally built for hockey and not basketball so attending games for the Bucks sometimes had you in the nosebleeds barely seeing what was going on on the court. The Bucks struggled after their 2013-2014 season with records of 41-41 (2014-2015) and 33-49 (2015-2016). Now, the Bucks have recently finished their regular season and moved to the playoffs. From 15-67 just five years ago, to now 60-22 which gave them the best record in the NBA, the number one seed in the East and home-court advantage, Giannis has proved himself as potentially one of the greatest players the NBA and the Bucks franchise will ever see.

The Bucks now have a new arena that opened this season, Fiserv Forum, which is built specifically for the Bucks (and Marquette) instead of hockey. Looking back on the Bucks in their previous years compared to now, the Bucks have sold out every single game this season. Something Milwaukee never thought they would see from being a small market team. From my experience, while working for the Bucks, you can see the difference in the crowd and feel their enthusiasm and excitement radiating off of the fans. And this is all thanks to Mr. Antetokounmpo who is making his mark here in Milwaukee. Giannis has won Eastern Conference Player of the Month for October/November, December, February and March/April and even earned his spot as Eastern Conference captain for the All-Star game this year. Giannis may be considered in his prime right now, but he is only 24-years-old which means he has plenty of time to only make himself better.

The Brewers had won the NL Central Divison back in 2011 but lost to the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Championship Series. After that, they struggled a bit and haven't won the title since until last year in 2018. He brought the Brewers to the NLCS last season, but unfortunately, they lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Yelich had 36 home runs last season and already has eight (as of 4/16/19) this season. He happens to be a great right fielder as well. In last night's (4/15/19) game against the Cardinals, Yelich alone scored three home runs.

Miller Park has been filling up more and more each game of Brewers fans. Being a small market team like their cross-city friends, the Bucks, bringing home an MVP title as well as a division title, it makes everyone aware of their greatness and dedication. The season may have just started back up again, but there is no doubt, if Yelich and his teammates keep playing like they are right now, they will have another shot of making it to the World Series.

Giannis Antetokounmpo and Christian Yelich have brought and will continue to bring excitement and greatness to Milwaukee which is something the city hasn't seen in a while. This era of sports will surely be remembered for a long time by the people of Milwaukee and Wisconsin.

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