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Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on the

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									3/30/09 Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on the Williams College Dance Program EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

In 2007 an external review committee visited the Williams Dance program. The committee was unanimous in their recommendation that dance be brought into the academic curriculum and, like the other performing arts on campus, provide training for students in the history, theory, performance and creative practice of the discipline. As one of the reviewers noted, “[fewer] than two percent of the colleges and universities in the United States still house dance in a Physical Education Department”. In September of 2008 Dean Wagner appointed an ad hoc committee to pursue the advice of the external review committee and to recommend a process through which Dance could become an academic entity. Before making a recommendation the ad hoc committee studied dance programs in peer institutions and thoroughly reviewed the history, the resources and the current offerings of the Dance program at Williams. Among our findings, the committee notes that the dance program has been active for nearly 40 years and approximately one hundred students currently engage in one of more of the five extracurricular dance ensembles. Both of these facts attest to the sustained interest of the student body. The committee also recognizes that the current program has a history of interdepartmental and community engagement, and that there is the potential for increased collaborations between programs and departments through its efforts. The Dance Committee recommends that as July 1, 2009, Dance be integrated into the academic curriculum as a department without a major. This unusual administrative category grows out of the committee’s efforts to develop an academic dance program that can be implemented for 2009–10 despite the current fiscal crisis. Before recommending the administrative and curricular model of a department, the committee reviewed the possibility of incorporating dance into one of the existing performing arts on campus and concluded that there was no resource or curricular advantage in doing so. We also studied the possibility of incorporating dance as a program, but determined that dance does not fit the curricular mandate of programs at Williams, which is to study and create a new body of knowledge by utilizing the methods and knowledge of well established disciplines. If Dance is constituted as a Department, it can without an increase in resources continue to offer courses for Physical Education credit, extracurricular ensemble opportunities and three courses for academic credit. Assigning the administrative structure of a department to the current program will provide the dance faculty with the same opportunities as all programs and departments to apply to the college for increased resources as they become available. New courses and, possibly, a route to a major, will be reviewed and approved through established college procedures. After reviewing the curricular offerings of dance departments in our peer institutions, the ad hoc committee recommends that the Williams dance curriculum evolve to offer the history, theory and practice of dance from many cultures, which may include Europe and the Americas, Africa and Asia.

SUMMARY OF FINDINGS

Following is a summary of the key findings and recommendations of the Dance Committee. Detailed discussion of these issues follows this summary.

2 A. Recommendation

The Dance Committee recommends that as of July 1, 2009, Dance be integrated into the academic curriculum as a department without a major. This unusual administrative category grows out of the committee’s efforts to develop an academic dance program that can be implemented for 2009–10 despite the current fiscal crisis. In the following sections of this document we present our rationale for moving forward now with this important and long overdue transition, and we offer recommendations for the subsequent growth and development of the Dance curriculum. This longer perspective assumes that as college finances improve, Dance will have access to sufficient levels of funding and staffing to offer a major and to become in all other respects a regular academic department.
B. Selected facts about the current Dance program

 The Dance Program at present resides fully within the Department of Athletics.  Approximately 100 students per year are involved in the Dance program, the majority expressing a deep connection to the program. Students who were invited to share their experiences with dance at Williams uniformly spoke of profound and even life-changing experiences. They told us that their training in dance helped them to develop insights about communication through the physical self, about relating to ones physical and emotional environment, and about the aesthetics of movement.  Dance is staffed by two regular faculty whose appointments total 1.75 FTE. Support is provided by a 2-year half-time administrative assistant.  The faculty direct five student ensembles and teach African dance, Irish dance, and Modern dance from the beginning to advanced levels.  The faculty also conduct independent studies each year with students who wish to pursue the academic study of dance. Independent studies are the only way for students to earn academic credit for work in the field of Dance.  Ballet is taught by visiting or adjunct faculty at the beginning and intermediate levels.  Two professional staff for costume design and lighting design are hired on a perperformance basis.  Professional staff who have ongoing appointments are a ¾ time music director and a 3⁄4time production manager. The Dance Program also contracts, with Kusika, for a music accompanist who works approximately half-time.  Dance shares with Theatre professional staff in the operations and management of the Costume Shop, technical direction of the MainStage theatre, theatrical sound and media production requirements, and publicity and front-of-house operations within the ’62 Center.  The faculty, with the help of a recently-appointed, half-time administrative assistant on a temporary contract, carry administrative responsibility for budgeting, dealing with vendors, coordinating and collaborating with professionals assembled for each dance production, and running searches for contract staff.
C. Guidelines for curricular growth and faculty FTE

We recommend that the following considerations guide the growth and curricular development of the new Dance Department.

3 1. Curriculum

 Courses in dance technique should be designed to include a separate classroom component for discussion, research, presentations, and like activities.  The curriculum should be expanded to include global traditions in dance such as Asian and South American. The current dance program has been recognized by its peers and valued by students for featuring non-traditional dance forms. Building on this strength will ensure the program’s academic distinctiveness and give greater depth to its present excellence.  Courses in dance history and theory should be incorporated into an expanding dance curriculum.  In 2009-10 three courses can be offered by the Dance Department for academic credit without adding staff or increasing faculty workload.1
2. Extra-curriculum

 Dance ensembles should be continued as before in recognition of the significant educational opportunities that they provide and their contributions to a more diverse college community.  The expansion of the dance curriculum to include global traditions may be accompanied by the creation of parallel ensembles such as an Asian dance ensemble.
3. The Major

 When the Department of Dance has the resources to offer a major, we recommend that it consider the ten-course major described below in section V.
4. Faculty

 We recommend that a faculty FTE in Dance of 4.0 be regarded as the minimum that would support a major and maintain a well-developed curriculum and department. Current faculty staffing stands at 1.75 FTE.  The committee recommends that professors of dance receive .25 FTE for directing an ensemble over a whole academic year. Since ensemble work is not only a critical component of a new dance major, but also an important component of extracurricular life on campus, the committee recommends that the dance faculty include ensemble work as a regular part of their FTE equation. This accommodation does not affect the dance faculty’s usual Winter Study responsibilities.  In the shorter term, as current faculty develop courses in their fields of expertise, additional faculty will be required to sustain instruction in Modern Dance.  At every stage of the Dance Department’s development, careful attention must be paid to issues of continuity in leadership and availability of senior faculty for chairing, evaluating junior faculty, etc.
D. Staffing and resources

 Current facilities for performance, teaching, and rehearsal are currently adequate for the academic dance program described above (and in greater detail below) and can accommodate future growth in the Dance program.
1

Details of the courses are listed below in section V.B.1.

4

 Positions in costume and lighting design should continue to be filled by independent contractors on an ad hoc basis, as this is the most cost-effective approach. However since the hiring and management of independent contractors has been a time-consuming responsibility of the dance faculty, we recommend that this work be added to the job description of the administrative assistant.  The current responsibilities of the administrative assistant support our proposal that the position become first a permanent half-time appointment, and then when faculty grows to 4 FTE that it be made a permanent full-time appointment. This would enable Dance to shift certain time-consuming performance-specific administrative responsibilities from the teaching faculty to the assistant.  The staff positions that are at present shared between Dance and Theatre are adequate for a reconfigured dance program.  There are no redundancies among staff who work solely for Dance, and those who share responsibilities within the programs in Theatre, Dance, and CenterSeries operations.  In the future it may be cost effective to combine the position of Lighting Director and Production Manager.
E. Budget

 The current budget is sufficient to support the curricular plans outlined for 2010–11.  Subsequent growth in the curriculum of the dance program will require additional funding for professional support.  In anticipation of such curricular change, we recommend that the position of Musical Director be changed from a regular staff position to one filled by an outside contractor in order to provide greater flexibility in the Director’s professional expertise.
F. Dance and P.E.

 We consider it important that Athletics and Dance continue to work together to award P.E. credit to students who participate in the ensembles and special dance events, and now also in academic dance classes.  Each Dance technique courses will be taught in two distinct class sessions, one focusing on physical training and the other on the history, theory and creative development of the dance form being studied. Dance will offer no dedicated P.E. courses; instead students will be able earn P.E. credit by enrolling in the technique component of designated academic dance courses. Successful completion of this component will be reported to the Athletics Department, which will then report the dance P.E. credits along with those of all other P.E. classes to the Registrar in the normal fashion.  To avoid disruption in the designated semester-long academic courses, students registering for P.E. will be expected to do so for a full semester and so will earn two P.E. credits.  The Athletics Department will incur no new costs in equipment, staffing, or in other areas by separating from Dance nor will the above mechanism for P.E. credit in dance impose new demands on Athletics resources such as the fitness center or the pool. P.E. students interested in dance will simply switch from registering through the Athletics Department to registering through the Dance Department.

5 II. MISSION STATEMENT FOR DANCE AT WILLIAMS

One of our earliest priorities was to develop a mission statement for the re-envisioned Williams Dance Program. This would ground our deliberations as well as express the program’s vision of its place at a liberal arts institution. ―The purpose of the Williams College Dance Program is to educate students in the physical disciplines, cultural traditions, and expressive possibilities of dance. We provide students with opportunities to participate in dance through the study of dance history, theory, and technique; through performance, experimentation, improvisation, and production; and through choreography and research. Our curriculum and ensembles teach students the unique problem-solving perspective of dance which embodies its insights through disciplined physical movement. Whether they pursue performing arts careers or other professions, graduates of this program will know how various cultures, past and present, have thought about and developed vocabularies of movement to express understandings about the complex relations between the body and the inner self, the individual and his social context, the group and the world. They will gain the analytical and creative skills to identify problems rationally, to discover imaginative solutions, and to present those solutions with precise observation, detailed execution, and self-conscious craft.‖

3/30/09

III.

GENERAL INTRODUCTION

The performing arts are a vibrant part of the Williams curriculum. Music and Theatre offer our students unique forms of intellectual inquiry and growth. They bring theory, practice, history, and performance together as complementary areas of study, and the spaces of learning include the studio and the stage as well as the classroom. These are qualities shared by the performing arts, yet Dance alone of these arts remains outside of the academic curriculum. We believe strongly that it is time to bring Dance into the curriculum as an academic discipline. This transition was emphasized by a recent external review committee as essential not only to the performing arts but also to the liberal arts curriculum as a whole. Since its founding over thirty years ago, the Williams College Dance Program has expanded the variety and depth of its offerings in response to its vision of the importance of dance at a liberal arts institution. As part of this vision, the program has welcomed not only students already dedicated to the art form but also a broad range of students, differing in ability and experience, who are attracted to the program for an equally broad range of reasons. The extraordinary commitment of the Dance Program’s faculty and staff makes this possible. In particular the dedication of its faculty, Sandra Burton and Holly Silva, to developing and maintaining the program has made it thrive. Moving dance from its awkward (though historically congenial) home in Athletics to its proper place in the academic curriculum will help support the ambitious program the dance faculty has pursued for years, offer recognition for their work directing ensembles, and permit a period of controlled growth, once economic considerations permit, to emerge as a department with a major which supports an even stronger Dance program. Dance will join Theatre and Music to provide a model for the performing arts in a liberal arts curriculum.
A. External review of the Dance Program

The Director of the Dance Program Sandra Burton asked senior staff to initiate a review of the program so that it could be assessed by peers from liberal arts institutions with which Williams routinely compares itself. The need for a review of the dance program and for an assessment of its role at Williams was recognized by the Dean of Faculty and he authorized an external review that took place during the fall semester of 2007. Sandra Burton and Assistant Director of Dance Holly Silva prepared a self-study and assembled additional information to send to the external reviewers—the directors of the dance programs at Bates, Carleton, Harvard, and Swarthmore. After the reviewers studied the material provided to them, they visited Williams to talk with faculty, staff, students, and administrators. The individual reports that they submitted to the Dean of Faculty were of one voice in insisting that dance must be brought into the academic curriculum alongside the other performing arts, and that it should be provided with the adequate resources to do so. As one of the reviewers noted, ―[fewer] than two percent of the colleges and universities in the United States still house dance in a Physical Education Department.‖2 The institutions whose dance programs we examined in detail in our deliberations3 have long

2 3

Elizabeth Bergman, Director of Dance and Lecturer at Harvard University. Connecticut College, Middlebury, Swarthmore, Trinity, Wesleyan and Roger Williams.

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integrated Dance into their academic curricula, as have a larger group of peer institutions whose Dance programs we studied.4
B. Ad hoc committee on the Dance Program

Our committee was constituted by the Dean of Faculty in response to the conclusions of the external review. We were asked to develop a set of recommendations for bringing the dance program into the academic curriculum and then to see the recommendations through to a motion and vote at the April faculty meeting. Should the faculty vote to approve the motion, these recommendations will be sent to the Dean of Faculty and the CAP for evaluation and, we hope, implementation. The members of the committee are: Rob Baker-White, Theatre Sandra Burton, Lipp Family Director of Dance Kerry Christensen, Classics Jennifer Danzi ’09 Keith Finan, Associate Provost Randal Fippinger, Manager of Performances & Events, Theatre Department, committee secretary John Gerry, Associate Dean of Faculty Mike Glier, Art, co-chair Lisa Melendy, Associate Director of Athletics Meghan Rose Donnelly ’11 Leyla Rouhi, Romance Languages Tony Sheppard, Music Holly Silva, Assistant Director of Dance David L. Smith, English, co-chair Brad Wells, Music
C. Committee mandate

Initially, the committee was charged with devising and recommending a new dance curriculum that could be implemented without delay and that would provide academic opportunities comparable to those of the other departments of the performing arts. We were asked to bracket considerations of cost in favor of designing a curriculum purely on the merits; resource issues would be taken up afterwards. The nature of our deliberations soon changed, however, as the reality of the fiscal crisis became clear. Bracketing issues of cost and resources became impossible. In response, the committee revised its approach and decided to consider a staged plan of curricular growth. Dance would in its first academic iteration offer a curriculum that relied only on existing resources. Then as fiscal recovery permitted, it would grow in stages until our initial vision was realized and Dance was able to present a major and operate administratively as a regular academic department. The fiscal crisis may have changed the

4

The larger group also includes Amherst, Bowdoin, Dartmouth, Mt. Holyoke, Smith, Vassar, Wellesley, and Wheaton.

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committee’s recommendations on the speed at which it is practical to grow a new dance program, but it has not changed the ambition of our recommendations.
D. The committee’s work

The work of the committee began with the co-chairs identifying sub-topics, developing an agenda for our deliberations, and forming subcommittees on the curriculum, resources, the budget, and the relationship of Dance with P.E. The agenda organized our work into three phases: first, (self-) education and research; second, program design; and finally, implementation. In the first phase we read all of the materials relating to the external review of dance including the Dance Program’s self-study and the reviewers’ reports and we toured and reviewed the college’s dance facilities. We then reviewed a number of dance programs offered in American colleges and universities.5 We determined that a model similar to the Swarthmore College dance program, which focuses on the history and practice of global dance forms, was appropriate to Williams.6 Such a model takes advantage of Dance’s current strengths in Irish, African, and Modern dance and shows how including additional dance traditions such as those of Asia and South America would form a rich and distinctive liberal arts dance curriculum. Swarthmore’s program also demonstrates the importance of developing a strong history and theory component alongside performance and culture. We next familiarized ourselves with the history and current form and function of the various dance ensembles at Williams. The discussion of ensembles brought into focus some complex structural and pedagogical issues, not least the question of dance’s relationship to the P.E. requirement.7 Dance technique classes at Williams have long been offered during regular class hours for P.E. credit through the Athletics Department. But the majority of the teaching and the extraordinary cultural contributions of the dance program have occurred in the extracurricular ensembles—Dance Company, Kusika, Sankofa and Inish. Because these ensembles have been so successful educationally and consonant with the college’s commitment to developing a more diverse community, the Dance Committee recommends that they continue unaffected by the transition of Dance into an academic department. We then entered the second phase of our work during which we developed a mission statement, designed a new dance curriculum both for the present and for staged implementation in the future, and determined the staffing and faculty positions necessary to constitute a fullyimplemented Dance Department and curriculum. This in turn led to the third phase, during which topics such as what kind of administrative structure dance should have, how best to leverage dance’s current resources for its new incarnation, how to roll out the new program, and on what kind of timeline to do so, were considered.

5 6 7

See note 2 above. For Swarthmore’s dance curriculum, go to <http://www.swarthmore.edu/x18790.xml>. See section IX below.

9 IV. ADMINISTRATIVE MODELS

An especially challenging issue in light of the new and stringent financial constraints that the college faces was the question of what administrative form dance should take in the academic curriculum. In short, no viable administrative model can be fully implemented with current staffing and budget. Nonetheless we decided to determine, on the merits, which administrative model would best serve Dance. Then we considered how best to deploy existing resources as a first step toward full implementation, the remaining steps to be taken in a more financiallysecure future. The committee proposes that Dance be integrated into the academic curriculum in the form of a department. As soon as possible in the future, its staffing should be increased enough both to offer a major in Dance and to constitute a full department in line with other academic departments.
A. Joint department with Theatre or Music

The Resource Subcommittee found no budgetary advantage to joining Dance to the Theatre or Music departments, nor did this committee find any curricular advantage to such an accommodation.
B. Program

The Committee then turned its attention to the possibility of creating a Program in Dance. Although Dance has embraced interdepartmental collaborations for many years and continues to express strong interest in creating a dance program that engages other departments on campus, we concluded that a curriculum in Dance does not fit the administrative or curricular profile of programs at Williams. Administratively, it is not interdisciplinary, for no faculty in departments other than Dance could contribute core courses to the program. Curricularly, Dance does not fit the program model, since programs utilize the methods and knowledge of a variety of established disciplines to create new and discrete bodies of knowledge that would not otherwise be formally represented in the college’s curriculum. In contrast, Dance as an art form precedes recorded history, and in the academy it is well-established as a discipline with a creative methodology that is all its own. It is important to note here that although dance does not fit the program model as it is defined at Williams, it can and should create a curriculum that encourages, and a major that requires that students take advantage of the offerings of other departments that have been designated by Dance as electives.
C. Department

The Committee next considered whether Dance should become a Department which will eventually offer a major. There was some concern initially about creating a Department that does not yet have the resources to offer a major. But that concern was allayed once we realized that the Theatre Department evolved not so long ago in this manner. Assigning the administrative structure of a department to the current program will provide the dance faculty with the same opportunities as all departments and programs to apply to the college for increased resources as they become available..

10 V. THE DANCE CURRICULUM A. The Major

We advocate the following model for a future-envisioned ten-course major.  Four technique classes  Five core courses: Anatomy and Kinesiology Dance History The Creative Process Performance and Production Music for Dancers  At least one approved elective Nearly all majors in dance at other colleges are similarly structured although the specifics vary. In the Williams major, these courses will be worked out as individual faculty are given the opportunity to create and teach them.
B. Implementation

After deciding that Dance should take on the administrative structure of a Department, determining a curricular structure for the major, and articulating broader categories of course instruction that we feel are important components of a new Dance curriculum, the Committee turned its attention to designing a plan of implementation. First, the committee determined early in our conversation that the current program is working well and should be maintained during this period of transition and, we had hoped, growth. The current faculty is fully occupied with this vigorous program, and additional faculty would be needed in order to add new courses to the Dance curriculum. Since the economic crisis has precluded hiring new faculty, the committee determined that the only reasonable option at this time is to establish a department that maintains current dance offerings, and slowly, as resources become available, develops academic courses and ultimately is able to offer a major.
1. Initial curriculum

The proposed Department of Dance can with current staffing offer three courses for academic credit in 2009–10 without increasing the faculty’s work load. ―Prelude to Revolt‖ will be offered by Erika Dankmeyer, who was offered a position as visiting artist to teach one class and help direct Dance Company before the recession set in. ―Visual Art and Movement‖ has been taught by Sandra Burton for several years within the Art Department and the course will now be offered in Dance and cross listed in Art. And finally the Dance Seminar, which is a research-oriented course for students who are participating in ensembles and wish to complement this experience with related academic work. This combination of ensemble and classroom experience already exists de facto in the number of independent studies offered by Dance faculty. Therefore not only will this course not add to the faculty workload, it will collect and organize such independent studies into a single seminar in which students can both pursue individual research and learn from their instructor and classmates as topics common to all are addressed.

11 2. The role of ensembles

The Committee spent considerable time discussing ways of bringing ensemble work into the academic curriculum, since it would offer students new opportunities to receive credit for creative work and also expand department offerings without increasing total FTE. We found, however, that ensemble work cannot at this time be offered for credit primarily because of issues related to the ―division of the day.‖ But when dance becomes a department it will be necessary to account for the significant faculty time spent directing ensembles. After reviewing the precedents set by Theater and Music as well as the logistics of offering a future major in dance, the committee recommends that Dance faculty receive the course equivalent of .25 FTE a year for supervising each Ensemble that meets 5 hours or more per week over the course of an academic year. Since learning the art of performance is essential to a strong program in Dance, ensembles will continue to be a significant priority even as the Dance faculty and curriculum are moved to the academic realm and ultimately enter a period of academic growth and development. In order to include both performance-based learning and more traditional classroom methods, we have determined that the annual course load for dance faculty will normally consist of directing one ensemble, and teaching three courses for academic credit.
VI. PRIORITIES FOR FUTURE GROWTH

After considerable research and discussion the Committee decided upon curricular priorities that should guide the future growth of the Dance program. We have developed these priorities with the assumption that the fully-implemented Dance program would consist of at least 4 FTE, the minimum level of faculty needed in order to support a major and offer a basic yet rich curriculum in dance.
A. Curriculum

In brief, they are Modern Dance, History/Theory, and Global Traditions, each an area of potential growth that serves the requirements of the dance major, offers greater opportunities for synergy with other disciplines, and most importantly is key to our vision of a successful dance program at a liberal arts college such as Williams. Each also has staffing implications.
1. Modern dance

Modern dance has been a part of the Williams Dance Program since its inception. Modern Technique has been offered in Physical Education for many years and Dance Company, the flagship ensemble, has been the production venue for it. The responsibility for teaching modern technique/choreography and the direction of Dance Company are currently shared by the faculty. However, as the department begins to offer more classes, the current faculty will of necessity focus on their fields of expertise in African and Irish dance. Hence, if Modern is to remain in the curriculum, new faculty will be needed to teach it. There is, of course, the option to abandon Modern dance, but this would not only jettison a successful form of dance in our current dance curriculum, but it would also render our program anachronistic in comparison to the curricula of all of our peer institutions. As Sandra Burton pointed out, a majority of prospective students of dance are trained in Modern and/or ballet, and not offering Modern would deter many such students from applying.

12 2. History and theory

The Dance Program has the same goal as other departments at Williams. It aspires to educate students to have a historically informed and self-consciously critical understanding of the relationship between this discipline and other major areas of human experience. Whether they become professional dancers, bankers, professors, physicians, journalists, or architects, an education in dance should provide Williams graduates of the program with conceptual tools, personal skills, and cultural understandings that will fundamentally enhance both their professional and personal lives. To fulfill both aspects of its mission, the Williams Dance Program needs to add a position in Dance History and Theory. This recommendation follows the common pattern of development at other colleges. Most began with the teachers of dance technique and, when they evolved into full-fledged academic programs, they added faculty to teach dance history and theory. This rubric has become a standard one in the field and will be the one which shapes the advertisement for this position when the time is right to conduct a search. Needless to say, candidates for such a position will have both a general knowledge of dance history and a more specialized expertise regarding certain regions, periods, genres, and traditions within dance. We can indicate preferences for expertise in African or Asian, Modern or ballet, but may want to be flexible so as to compete for the very best candidates on the market.
3. Global traditions

In our early committee meetings, there was a strong consensus of enthusiasm for the broad offerings and multi-cultural emphases of the Swarthmore program. However, the college’s conservative full-time staffing (roughly the same 4 to 5 FTE that we would envision Williams eventually having) cannot alone be sustaining such a rich program, and we must assume that Swarthmore’s program has access to and takes advantage of other resources as well. For example, the college’s proximity to both Philadelphia and New York, and consequently to an exceptional pool of possible adjunct faculty, is an advantage that we do not share. Nevertheless, Swarthmore’s program offers a vision that we can and should pursue in ways and to the degree that our resources allow. We will need to retain some flexibility in the precise specialties of candidates for such a position because no matter what, excellence remains the highest priority. When the college is finally able to approve a new position in dance, we urge that the job description not be restricted to any one of these three areas, but that it be crafted so as to appeal to a range of candidates who to varying degrees can provide support for the established emphases of the program (African, Irish, and Modern), develop a history/theory component of the curriculum, and/or extend the cultural range of our offerings. New hires in Modern Dance and History/Theory will have some impact on the total resource picture. When the FTE of the department reaches 4 the committee recommends that the administrative assistant position be increased to full time and new office space will have to be secured (see Resource Report for discussion). Increasing the Global Traditions aspect of the Dance curriculum, however, will create significant new expenses, specifically for costuming and musical accompaniment.

13 B. Ballet

Finally, some comments about ballet seem appropriate. The centrality of ballet in the Western dance tradition goes without saying. Williams, like most other colleges, offers technique classes in ballet through the intermediate level, and it is important that we continue to do so. However, most colleges do not offer ballet technique above the intermediate level, and we would not favor doing so at Williams. This strong consensus about an important but limited role for ballet at liberal arts colleges reflects both the mission of colleges and some particular facts about ballet as a discipline. Dancers destined to become professionals in ballet usually begin their training early in childhood and enter specialized training programs in mid-adolescence. They typically do not attend college at all—or at least, not until after they have established their professional careers. The technical training for ballet beyond the intermediate level is extremely arduous and highly specialized—especially as the major ballet companies have, in many instances, their own particular versions of ballet technique. Consequently, students who wish to pursue ballet beyond an intermediate level are best served by enrollment in conservatories or other specialized institutes, such as the School of the New York City Ballet. Nearly all liberal arts colleges have concluded that such intensely specialized training is not appropriate to their missions, and we concur. We consider it crucial that the college maintain staffing for beginning through intermediate ballet. However, we would not endorse an expansion of ballet beyond the intermediate level. Although we do not foresee additional instruction in ballet technique, we do anticipate that a Department of Dance will allow for the addition of courses in the history of European ballet to the curriculum.
C. Some resource implications

The Committee considered the number of faculty that are likely to be required to mount a major. We determined that the Dance Department will need to grow to at least 4 FTE in order to staff the core academic curriculum of the major as well as to direct the extracurricular dance ensembles. New hires in Modern Dance and History/Theory as described above will certainly also have an impact on the total resource picture. When the department reaches 4 FTE, we recommend that the administrative assistant position be increased to full time. New office space will have to be secured (see Resource Report for discussion), and developing the Global Traditions feature of the Dance curriculum entail significant new expenses, particularly for costuming and musical accompaniment.
VII. THE RELATIONSHIP OF DANCE AND P.E.: EVALUATION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The subcommittee recommends that P.E. and dance continue to work together to award P.E. credit to students who participate in academic dance classes, the ensembles, and special dance events. They should also work independently to make sure that students know of the opportunity to fulfill P.E. requirements via some dance offerings. The masthead for Dance in the course catalog, for instance, should outline the policy regarding the enrollment of P.E. students in academic dance courses, and each course description should make clear whether or not P.E. students are welcome. Similarly, any announcements or literature about P.E. offerings produced by the P.E. department should refer interested students to the Dance Program to ask about taking

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dance courses for P.E. credit. Otherwise, the subcommittee recommends that the P.E. curriculum and the dance curriculum be clearly and cleanly separated. P.E. will no longer offer dance courses, though they might offer courses that will be beneficial to dancers. And the Dance Program will no longer offer P.E. courses, though they might offer courses or other opportunities that will count for P.E. credit. The same recommendation—a distinct separation—applies to staffing, budgeting, and allocation of space. P.E. should no longer depend on Sandra, Holly, or any other dance faculty or staff member to provide service to the P.E. department. And therefore, dance would have no special claim to financial, spatial, or other resources within the PE department

3/30/09

Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Dance


								
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