Assistant Professor for Studio Practice - Ballet

JOB TITLE: Assistant Professor for Studio Practice: Ballet

DEPARTMENT:  School of Dance

REPORTS TO:  Dean, School of Dance


The School of Dance at the University of the Arts, under the leadership of Donna Faye Burchfield, encourages undergraduate and graduate students, as well as faculty, to boldly take risks in the process of discovering and transforming ourselves, each other, and by extension, the world. A large school situated within a forward-thinking university for the visual and performing arts in Philadelphia, the School of Dance reimagines the depth and rigor of a discipline-based dance conservatory by pursuing a pedagogy that interweaves practice, theory and the development of critical thinking to actively motivate students and the development of their research. The School of Dance relies heavily on a collaborative interdisciplinary network of artists, mentors and scholars to foster critical conversations about the meanings, purposes, and potentialities of dance and performance in contemporary society.

The undergraduate program (BFA) asks students to develop the ability to think critically and build their identity as artists. This program is divided into two parts: Foundation Series (for 1st and 2nd year students) and Portfolio & Research Series (for 3rd and 4th year students). The study of Ballet is integral to both the Foundation and Research & Portfolio Series in the BFA curriculum, forming a site of expansive critical practice for every student in our school. Theories, pedagogies and practices of Ballet inform students' creative work, studio practice and their research within improvisation, critical studies and civic/communal assembly.

The graduate (MFA) program aims to rethink inherited practices and consider an inclusive global future for the field by departing from a traditional educational format proposing instead the manifestation of temporary schools that create and enliven experimental and emergent pedagogies. The School of Dance seeks to open up student-driven pathways and expand the ways students can access, think about, and reimagine the practices and techniques of making and performing dance - valuing their skill, commitment and the urgency of their ambitions as capable of developing new and critical perspectives in dance.

The School of Dance seeks a full time Assistant Professor of Studio Practice: Ballet, beginning in the 2023-24 academic year. The position is a 3-year appointment with potential for renewal. Candidates should bring to the curriculum inclusive, equitable and diverse pedagogical approaches.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Teaching Ballet from a student-centered, anatomically sound, forward-thinking approach in the Studio Practice curriculum offered at the undergraduate level
  • Contributing to the development of an expanded ballet curriculum, referencing codified techniques while centering emerging practices and individual perspectives
  • Staging and coaching repertory and/or creating new work for and with students
  • Mentoring senior projects and/or MFA thesis work, and/or leading capstone courses at all levels
  • Advising students’ academic progress and creative and professional aspirations
  • Participating in recruitment and audition of new students
  • Serving on committees and providing service in other areas of the university
  • Attending faculty meetings and other school performances and events

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by the incumbent; they do not purport to describe all functions.  Incumbent may be assigned other duties, and the essential functions may change from time to time as necessary.


  • A terminal degree in the discipline or the equivalent in research, scholarship, and/or creative or professional practice.


  • Demonstrated university teaching skills and professional experience within the US and/or abroad

Competencies, Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

  • Commitment to advancing ballet through the innovative use of evolving technologies, methodologies, traditional and new media
  • Familiar with professional fields adjacent to dance, and exhibit an interest in exploring how the fields can effectively interact with each other
  • Demonstrated record of excellence, a broad range of professional accomplishments in dance
  • Strong connections to dance as evidenced through conference presentations, invited lectures/workshops and professional networks
  • Commitment to professional engagement with their own artistry
  • Ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing

Supervisory Responsibility:

  • None

About The University:

University of the Arts’ mission is simple: to advance human creativity. Established in 1876, UArts believes creativity is the most essential skill for success in today’s society and has educated generations of groundbreaking artists, performers, designers and creative leaders for more than 141 years.  After being granted university status in 1987, University of the Arts became the largest institution of its kind in the nation, offering programs in design, fine arts, media arts, crafts, music, dance, theater and writing. It now features 30 undergraduate arts majors, 15 graduate programs and the nation’s first PhD program in Creativity. UArts is also home to innovative centers across disciplines, including the Center for Immersive Media, Lightbox Film Center, Philadelphia Art Alliance and Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery. Learn more about UArts.


TO APPLY: Interested, qualified applicants should submit letters of application and resumes to the Human Resources Department via email to Please ensure job title is in the Subject line.

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