Students who wish to pursue a dance major now will be able to earn the Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance at Alabama State University, one of only two public universities in the state to offer the degree. The degree program, which will begin in fall 2013, was recently authorized by the Alabama Commission on Higher Education.

Unlike a Bachelor of Arts degree, which involves a broad liberal arts curriculum, the B.F.A. is a professional degree program which places a more intensive focus on the study of fine arts.

“It is very exciting to be able to offer our new degree program in dance,” said Dr. Tommie H. Stewart, dean of ASU’s College of Visual and Performing Arts. “It will give credentials to our students who want to pursue professional careers in dance.”

Currently, dance is offered as a concentration in the Theatre Arts program. Student applications for the new degree program are now being accepted through the Department of Theatre Arts. Department chair Dr. Wendy Coleman said the groundwork for recruiting students for the program already has started.

“We have several students now that are in the dance concentration who will transfer over to the B.F.A.,” Coleman said. “We have several freshmen students that are coming in that will be going into the program once it formally launches. We also will spend this year continuing to recruit students from performing arts high schools statewide and nationwide.” Coleman said additional faculty will be hired for the program, which will be housed in the Department of Theatre Arts.

For more information on the new B.F.A. degree program in dance, contact ASU’s Department of Theatre Arts at 229-6929.