Pre-College Dance Exchange began as a free, three day workshop for dancers entering 9th grade and older. Taught by upperclassmen dance majors from midwestern universities, the workshop was offered as an exchange -with the faculty gaining teaching experience in a workshop environment, and dancers gaining three full days of free classes.
Now, after its second successful session, it is expected that Pre-College Dance Exchange will continue as an opportunity for young dancers to experience a "dance intensive" at little to no cost.. In order to keep costs to participants little to none, potential workshop attendees will have the opportunity to receive partial or full scholarship through independent donors and sponsors of the program. Through this, students will gain experience in grant writing and community members will have the opportunity to support the arts in education.
"According to psychiatrist Dr. Joseph Coyle of the Harvard Medical School, the hippocampus and the cerebral cortex – both of which play a role in dancing – are rewired and consequently improved with frequent use. The dynamism required in decision-making – for example, what step you need to do next – paves the way for new neural paths that make information transmission faster and better. Such activities also help improve mental capacity since the cognitive processes are exercised in more ways than one." - Examined Existence article "Dancing Helps the Brain Function" Click Here to Read
A study funded by the NDEO showed that, "Students who had arts-rich experiences in high school were more likely than students without those experiences to complete a calculus course. Also, students who took arts courses in high school achieved a slightly higher grade-point average (GPA) in math than did other students." - Read the full study here.
"Schoolchildren exposed to drama, music and dance may do a better job at mastering reading, writing and math than those who focus solely on academics, says a report by the Arts Education Partnership." - USAToday article (Study: Arts education has academic effect) Click Here to Read
"Multiple independent studies have shown increased years of enrollment in arts courses are positively correlated with higher SAT verbal and math scores. High school students who take arts classes have higher math and verbal SAT scores than students who take no arts classes." - Research published by the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies called, "Critical Evidence: How the ARTS Benefit Academic Achievement. Click Here to Read