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K-State Today

December 5, 2023

Pentz elected to president-elect with National Dance Educators Organization

Submitted by Julie L. Pentz

Pentz headshot

Julie L. Pentz, professor of dance in the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, has been elected as the president-elect to the National Dance Organization, or NDEO. This is a five-year term, encompassing the roles of president-elect, president and past president.

The National Dance Education Organization stands as a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting dance educators across various settings and genres, with a commitment to advancing dance education for individuals from diverse backgrounds. Since its establishment in 1998, NDEO has played a pivotal role in shaping dance education within the arts. With a membership exceeding 4,200 individuals from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and more than 25 other countries, NDEO is well-positioned to continue its mission of advancing the field and advocating for dance education for all. Members include early childhood dance educators, K-12 dance teachers, dance studio owners, college and university dance professors, university students aspiring to become dance educators, dance teaching artists, choreographers, dance company directors and administrators. 

Pentz envisions furthering the success of NDEO as a dynamic, inclusive and forward-thinking organization, aspiring to set the gold standard for dance education and advocacy. Her vision involves uniting dance educators, fostering innovation, and expanding NDEO's reach and impact in advocating for dance education at all levels and in all sectors.

Pursuing her goals for NDEO, Pentz has dedicated herself to achieving four key objectives. She is committed to enhancing accessibility within the organization, aiming to make NDEO more inclusive and representative of a broader and more diverse community of dance educators. Diversifying membership will enable NDEO to better address the needs and perspectives of educators with varying backgrounds and experiences, ultimately creating a more vibrant dance education environment.

Pentz emphasizes the importance of providing cutting-edge professional development opportunities to empower educators. Her goal is to ensure that all educators, regardless of their location or available resources, have access to high-quality training, enabling them to stay at the forefront of their field and continuously improve their teaching methods.

Advocacy and policy constitute the third pillar of Pentz's goals. While continuing to advocate for the significance of dance education, she will focus on supporting dance education policy at local, state and national levels helping secure recognition and support for dance in all sectors, ensuring the sustainability and growth of dance education.

Lastly, Pentz recognizes the vital role of encouraging research and innovation in advancing dance education. Under her leadership she hopes to continue to support and establish new partnerships, providing a platform for educators to share innovative practices and techniques. This commitment to research and innovation aims to drive continuous improvement and evolution in dance education, enriching the experiences of both educators and students.