Major Overview

Do you have a passion for dance? Do you envision yourself performing on stage or choreographing routines? A degree in Dance may be for you.

Students who major in Dance take classes in the many different styles including jazz, ballet, hip hop, modern, tap, ethnic, and folk dance to continue training in a field they are passionate about. Since a career in dance is extremely competitive, students who pursue this degree to become professional dancers and choreographers have been training for years and have a genuine talent for the art.

Since there are many styles of dance, students often focus on a specific area once entering college. Along with the general Dance major, a popular area of study is Ballet.

Required Skills

Students who pursue a career in dance have typically been taking classes and been involved in performing from a young age. They have excellent balance and coordination to ensure they can move their bodies quickly and fluidly while performing. Creativity allows dancers and choreographers to create new styles and moves. Other necessary skills include persistence and stamina for long rehearsals, leadership for directing dances, and a passion for the art.

A career in dance is fulltime and can often lead to long hours. Those in companies or involved in performing arts studios may practice during the day and perform at night. Irregular hours are common when working with others and scheduling around other responsibilities. Choreographers at studios may work typical workdays, but spend hours at night or on weekends creating new routines.

Training for a career in dance usually starts at a young age, but some students have begun training in high school. Participation in junior dance companies or summer training programs allows students to gain more experience and improve their skills before pursuing a degree.

Since a career in dance is typically short, some Dance majors pursue a degree in another field for a later career.

Careers

Dance graduates work for a variety of performing arts studios around the world. Some dance majors have become members of a company, such as the New York City Ballet, while other pursue careers as cruise ship, theme park, or casino performers.

Choreographers find work at dance studios, with professional companies, on Broadway, or at a variety of smaller entertainment companies. Dance and choreography is found in many areas of entertainment, giving dance graduates a variety of job opportunities.

Although the career is growing at an average pace, there is intense competition for positions in performing arts companies or as choreographers. Many people want to perform or choreograph, but there are only a limited number of positions available.

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Major at a Glance

Top statistics for this major

College Ranking by Major

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Yearly Graduations
 2,514
Average Starting Salary
$34,042
Average Mid-Career Salary
N/A

Example Careers

Here is a small sample of the careers that a degree in Dance might open up.

Art, Drama, and Music Teachers, Postsecondary
Choreographers
Dancers
Salary data is estimated by College Factual using 2013 data provided by PayScale.
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