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ULM discusses adding dance as a major

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MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - A group of ULM professors are moving their feet and hoping administration will feel the beat by adding a dance major. Despite recently announced budget cuts our Nolan Crane says current dance students are all for this move.

Ashley Boykin is just one student at ULM who enjoys dancing and would love to make a career on the stage.

"I've been dancing since I was four years old and so it's a big part of my life and who I am," said Ashley Boykin.

It takes a lot of skills and discipline to be a graceful performer. Boykin hopes ULM will move forward and standout by offering a dance major. Her classmates say if you can glide across this floor you can also succeed in other professions.

"You can open up your own studio; you can become a dance critic, a dance writer. You can be a choreographer as well as a dancer in any realm," said Stormie Jones.

"I feel like dance opens a lot of opportunities and the way the major would work here was you can pair it with like if you wanted to go into business for yourself and own your own studio you could get a dance major with business classes along with that," said Boykin.

A dance major might have flexibility when it comes to careers but last November ULM President Nick Bruno announced plans to consolidate the university's five colleges into three and eliminate 25 jobs. These dance instructors say adding the major wouldn't require school leaders to add any staff.

"I am very optimistic that it will happen within the coming year," said Tina Mullone.

Currently these students can only earn a minor in dance at ULM, but if Ashley gets her wish that would soon change. She says the whole university would benefit by adding dance to the list of majors for students to study.

If administrative leaders accept a proposal to make dance a major, ULM would be the only university in the region to offer the degree.

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