University of South Wales – closure of dance degree
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We were extremely saddened and concerned to learn of the closure of University of South Wales’ (USW) dance degree course. Launched just three years ago, the first cohort of students – including one of One Dance UK’s Ambassadors – have only recently graduated. This means that the full impact of their training and education on the dance sector in Wales and more widely across the UK has yet to be seen. Supporters have launched an online campaign to save the course using #saveUSWdance.
Charlotte Perkins, who recently graduated from USW and was a Dance Ambassador for One Dance UK said,
“USW Dance has given me the physical, academic and creative training and guidance I needed to become a versatile dance artist, now working in the sector. My experiences at USW Dance have given me the confidence and skills needed to make my own work – which I am sharing at the up and coming Cardiff Dance Festival 2019. Without such high quality teaching and the opportunity to collaborate with such a huge variety of organisations and artists working in Wales, I do not feel this would have been possible.”
The Welsh government has recently taken the brave and much-celebrated decision to reform their curriculum to include ‘expressive arts’ as one of six key areas of learning and experience for compulsory school-age students. It is disappointing and worrying that University of South Wales’ decision to close this course severely limits the opportunities for the young people of Wales to progress to study dance at degree level in their own country. We would like to offer our support to all students and staff affected. One Dance UK will be in contact with the university to find out further details and see how we as the sector support organization for dance can support those affected.
*Update: Unfortunately, after discussions and campaigning, this decision was made final on 11.12.19.*