Anne’s Admission Advice: Perfecting your dance resume

September 1, 2019

Rachel Harris dancing in front of the Glorya Kaufman International Dance Center

Rachel Harris (BFA '20) | Photo by Mary Mallaney

Fitting your many years of dance experience onto a single page can seem like a daunting task. In fact, I often get asked if the dance resume can be longer than one page. You can probably guess my answer.

So, why can’t your resume be more than one page? The reason is that, at USC Kaufman, you will define and refine your artistic identity, and we want you to start thinking about how to present yourself now.

It would be impossible to include all of your dance experience on one page, even if the words were in size two font and the page had no margins. Know that what we are most interested in are the highlights of your dance career—those things that have most impacted you.

Resume requirements

What does our resume require? We try to make things a little easier by providing you with a resume template—which you should follow. It includes:

  1. Your contact information, including your Common App ID Number.
  2. A one to two sentence Statement of Objectives, which gives us a quick snapshot of your goals.
  3. Your academic profile, including your GPA and test score(s). This tells us a little bit about your academic preparation given that we don’t see your Common Application.
  4. Your dance training, including summer programs. Here’s where you’ll probably have to make the biggest cuts. Feel free to condense information in a way that makes sense. One general tip: Be sure to focus on more recent training.
  5. Don’t forget to include any relevant roles.
  6. Choreographic experience, if you have any. If you don’t, just leave the entire section off.
  7. Awards and scholarships—or any other important dance distinctions.
  8. Finally, other activities you love—because we are interested in getting to know you as more than just a dancer. You can list your club involvement, leadership positions, hobbies, and anything else you want the faculty to know about you. For example, mine might include, “building dollhouse miniatures” or “collectible clip on earrings.”

What we don’t care about are your height, weight, eye color, age, etc. This is The New Movement after all! Also, please only submit text, since you’ll provide separate photos.

Most importantly, don’t use Comic Sans, as I have a love/mostly hate relationship with the font.

By Anne Aubert-Santelli, Assistant Dean of Admission and Student Services