Look before you LEAP


Fun times in rehearsal (Copyright Erik Tomasson)


Dancers who are currently pursuing higher education have to juggle an unpredictable and incredibly busy schedule with performances and rehearsals, homework, personal lives, and most importantly, sleep.

Luckily for the arts professionals in the Bay Area, St. Mary’s College of Moraga caters to our unique schedules. St. Mary’s created something called the LEAP program, which  stands for Liberal Education for Arts Professionals. LEAP classes are held every Sunday evening in San Francisco and the program gives artists the opportunity to prepare for their lives once their performing career is finished.

The LEAP program opened my mind to the world. I asked myself, down the line, do I want to finish a successful dance career only to start over with no preparation? The answer was, and still is, no.  The students in my first LEAP class were asked to break down how we managed our time during the day. I filled the paper out and realized I wasted soooooo much time without even realizing it.

The teachers emphasized that we all needed to rethink how we spent our free time, because soon we would need every single free second of the day to complete our assignments. I wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into, but I knew I needed to do it. I soon discovered how to prioritize activities and eliminate unimportant ones. I’ve learned how to become more efficient with my time so that I could complete my homework and get good grades. I became a master of multi-tasking, studying while I ate or did laundry. Everything the LEAP program has taught me is tremendously valuable and these lessons will be assets in the future, for any career that I choose.

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