A dance class has been added for half of the Fall 2018 semester. The class will be instructed by University of Kansas graduate student Tim Flattery. Categorized as an exercise science course, the class is open to any students who are interested.
Proposed by Assistant Professor of Exercise Science and Head Dance Coach Lyndsey Payne, the class will be less of an activity class and based more on instruction and growth.
“I wanted to do it and it just so happened that the deadline to submit was rapidly approaching so I was able to talk to the right people and go through the right channels to get it approved,” Payne said.
Director of Exercise Science Chris Todden agreed that this was a great opportunity.
“I am pretty excited to offer more opportunities for students to take a class not only where they are physically active, but also where they can learn a life-long skill,” Todden said.
According to Payne, the class will be set up to where skill level is not an issue. Beginners will not hinder the progress of more experienced dancers and vice versa. It is all about the individual.
The individuality also creates a new form of elective. The current classes that are similar rely on groups; there is a soccer and a basketball course—both of which require a team. Dance also requires minimum equipment, making it much easier to get involved.
Both Payne and Todden are hopeful that this is only the beginning of future additions to the activity courses offered by Baker. It is too soon to tell where the class will lead, but Payne has some ideas.
“I would love to see it develop more. It’s Dance I, so obviously if this goes well and people like it we can offer a Dance II that is a bit more advanced and just go from there and build it,” said Payne. “I’m anxious to see what the interest is in this class.”
Todden looked even further, explaining a future that many universities are experiencing.
“There are institutions out there that offer dance as a minor or major,” said Todden. “That is a long way from where we are now, but it is a step in that direction. If it continues to grow, then who knows what it will become.”
Students are beginning to take an interest in the course. Freshman exercise science major Kayelee Smith sees the class as nothing but a positive impact.
“I think a dance class is a great way to promote physical activity among a college student’s busy schedule,” Smith said. “I am the chair of Exercise is Medicine, which promotes physical activity on campus, so I am a huge fan of this new class. The dance class creates an environment where students can relax and get away from the stress of other classes and get in exercise as well.”