Academics

The Department of Dance at Western Michigan University offers three programs in dance:

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance (80 credit hours)
  • Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance (53 credit hours)
  • Dance minor (18 credit hours)

The B.F.A. program emphasizes performance, choreographic and aesthetic training and is designed for the student seeking employment at the professional level. 

The B.A. program offers an opportunity to explore the diversity of the dance profession within a strong liberal arts component. B.A. students individualize their program by choosing electives that support their dance career goals.

The dance minor is designed for students who wish to continue their dance studies as an avocation. Due to high demand, the dance minor is limited to 50 students and there is a waiting list to become a minor.

Dance courses offered include all levels of ballet, jazz and modern dance, five courses in choreography, three dance history courses, dance science and analysis, conditioning, pedagogy and production. An audition is required for acceptance into all dance major programs. Consult the University catalog for more information.

Student handbook

Advising

Below are links to advising slips for the B.F.A., B.A. and dance minor program requirements.

After WMU

Dance majors have gone on to perform with the companies of Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Keigwin+Company, Dendy Dancetheater, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Inaside Chicago Dance, Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, Garth Fagan Dance, Margaret Jenkins Dance Company, Eisenhower Dance Ensemble, River North Chicago Dance Company, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance, Chicago Moving Company, Bebe Miller Company, Repertory Dance Theatre, Decadancetheater, Milwaukee Ballet, Augusta Ballet, The Joel Hall Dancers and Wellspring/Cori Terry and Dancers.

Others have danced at major theme parks, in touring productions of Broadway shows and on cruise ships. Graduates have been accepted into prestigious graduate dance programs. Others run successful dance studios or teach in community colleges and universities.