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Behind the Curtain

Testimonies to the Importance of Dance Educators
By Susan McGreevy-Nichols
Posted on 5/22/2013 4:09 PM
Hi All,

The staff has finally worn me down about starting a blog to share some of the stories and insight I have gained and continue to build daily as a dance educator, advocate, and the current Executive Director of the National Dance Education Organization. I really dragged my feet – you would never know that I initiated and wrote the K-12 column for Dance Teacher Magazine for more than 5 years. So here goes!

It seems like yesterday I was teaching a sixth grade dance class in the rear of the cafeteria at Roger Williams Middle School. I spent 28 years creating a dance program in the inner city that sadly no longer exists. It is still amazing to me that I have transitioned from a middle dance teacher to Executive Director for a national arts organization in Washington, DC. Who would have thought, certainly not me. And do I LOVE this job!

Speaking of Roger Williams Middle School, I just ran across an email from a former student. When people used to ask me why I stayed so long at the middle school level and in the inner city…this email says it all. Enjoy!

Hello Ms. McGreevy,
I am so happy to have been able to get in touch with you!!! I may have never said this before but because of you I am a dance educator today. I am ever so grateful to you. You and all the dance teachers at Roger Williams are the reason why I love dance, and look, today I stand proud with a Masters in Dance Education! You are my true mother in the dance world! With much love and respect, Augusto

This email reminds me how important it is to share testimony such as this. It is the evidence that a dance educator DOES have tremendous impact on their students' lives. I would love it if you could send me quotes (directly to or leave them below in the comments) from your students so NDEO can create a collection of these types of heartfelt sentiments. I am not yet sure how we will use it, just that it needs to be shared.

Until next time!
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