Q: “I own a very small studio in a very small town. My mother and I are the only dance teachers here, and she is now talking of retiring. I don’t know any other dancers here who would be able to replace her. How can I go about recruiting another teacher?”
A: “These days, 75 percent of jobs are found through networking and social networking sites. Make sure your dance studio is out there and has a presence online. Your number one place to start would probably be Facebook. Make a page or a group for your business.
“Conventions can be a huge resource for finding innovative teachers. Even at those that are a little farther away, there’s a chance that you can find a teacher who’s local. Other really good resources are community boards, local dance associations, local college dance programs and any competitions in your area.
“There are also a lot of great websites to post job listings, both general and dance-specific. Once you’ve found someone who you connect with online, never hire sight unseen. It’s a progression. First, see a resumé and cover letter, then have a phone interview, meet with them and see them teach. Just go slowly, regardless of whether they come from a web page, a dance convention or anywhere else. And always go with your gut.”
Linda Bunch is a career counselor at Career Transition for Dancers–Los Angeles.
* For a comprehensive list of conventions, check out Dance Teacher’s Convention Guide
*A great place to get listed is Dance Magazine’s Dance Finder and Classifieds. Check out both at dancemagazine.com
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This Sunday, master ballet teacher Finis Jhung turns 80. After a career as a soloist for both San Francisco Ballet and the Joffrey and a principal for Harkness Ballet, Jhung carved out a unique place for himself as a ballet teacher in New York City. He's coached the boys of Billy Elliot: The Musical, developed a popular video and DVD how-to series and STILL teaches seven classes a week at the Ailey Extension. He's graced the pages of this magazine to offer his time-honored wisdom again and again, and he's currently working on a memoir. (We can't wait to read it.) Happy birthday, Finis!
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