Joining the Team
We recruit MIT/Wellesley affiliates to dance with us on our team in the beginning half of the Fall semester — no partner or experience is necessary! The majority of new team members, in fact, have had joined us with no prior dance experience. All we require of you is an interest in what we do. We encourage everyone to join us for our classes and competitions with no commitment of any kind for the first few months. This trial period is meant to give you a good chance to experience our team culture.
How Do I Join?
If you are an MIT student or affiliate, the first step to join is simply to try out our classes in the Fall.
If you would like more information about our classes or have any questions that are not answered by our website, contact our Rookie Coordinator and s/he will get back to you in a timely manner.
Don’t I Need Dance Experience and a Partner to Join the Team?
We are committed to promoting dance on campus and this means we love to teach anyone, even those with two left feet, proper dance technique and style. The majority of new team members have never danced a step of ballroom before taking our classes. Our coaches will train you from the bottom up, and our consistent high placements illustrate their excellent teaching of our rookies. Because we do not expect you to be familiar with dance beforehand, there are no try-outs or auditions required to join. If you are worried you won’t find a partner, realize that all of the rookies joining the team also need partners. We are sure you will find a partner amongst the other team members, but if any assistance or advice is needed in your partner search, veteran team members are happy to help.
How Much Time Must I Commit?
The time commitment to the team is entirely up to the individual team members. You get to decide how many group lessons to take, how often you want to come to them, and how much time you spend practicing. Most of our dancers spend between 6 and 10 hours per week between lessons and practice with their partners. Some spend considerably less or more time; the choice is personal. The only required commitments are helping out from time to time with events such as our social dances or other team events, assisting at the competition we host in April for a couple hours, and representing the team in at least one competition per term.
How Much Do Classes Cost?
Dancesport is not cheap, but no sport is. However, we heavily subsidize the cost of dancing in order to make it as affordable as possible for students. Rookies who had never danced before starting this fall will have a single “rookie fee” which will include team membership fees, all lessons, and competition registration fees for selected competitions. Fees will not be collected until November allowing plenty of time for you to decide if the team is right for you. After the first term as a rookie, there will be a team fee and fees for each cycle of classes you take.
Fees will vary depending on your student status. MIT students will have the lowest fees. Non-student fees will be 1.1-2x higher depending on your MIT affiliation.
What If I Have Dance Experience?
Those with experience in ballroom dancing are also very welcome to join! Your degree of experience will dictate the level at which you will be competing. The special “rookie fee” will not apply to those who join at the Bronze level or above.
Generally speaking, how long you have been dancing may restrict your competing in the Newcomer or Bronze levels; aside from length of experience, placement is usually based on skill level. Our recommendation is that you try competing in the lowest level you are permitted to dance, based on the rules of that particular competition. As a special note, if you have previously danced in Pro-Am competitions, you may need to dance at a lower level in amateur competitions than you do with your professional teacher, allowing time to adjust to the amateur dance scene. In collegiate competitions, your partner no longer is a professional with years of experience, but a dancer like yourself. Your amateur partner might not have the frame, technique, and style to which you are accustomed.
Contact the Rookie Coordinator for more information.