Friday, March 4, 2011

Why I Do It

I was joking around with my dance students, saying that I was a millionaire. One of the students said, "If you were a millionaire, you wouldn't be here," to which I promptly replied:

"Even if I had a billion dollars, I would still be here. We'd just have a more fabulous studio."

I'm not in this to make any money. My other job as a programmer keeps me comfortable enough. I set up this dance academy (and volunteer a significant amount of my time, energy, and effort) to create opportunities for youth that they ordinarily couldn't have.

Fifteen percent of the student body is on scholarship due to financial hardships in their families.

Boys -- BOYS -- are feeling not only comfortable but proud dancing. This alone almost brings me to tears when I think about it. When I was younger, after I had watched the ballet, Billy the Kid, during a school field trip, I wanted to learn how to dance but was too scared by the stigma, too poor to afford anything, and (even if I were more courageous and had the money) there simply weren't any studios that really taught boys where I grew up, where I'm building up the Academy.

Because of my previous skills working with people who have disabilities, I've been able to open up my classes to students with special needs (such as students who have been diagnosed with autism and learning disabilities).

This is why I do this.


  1. This is one of the reasons I'm in awe of you!

  2. "Inasmuch as you did so for the least of my did so for Me" (The Words of Christ, Matthew 25:40).

    Andrew-You have a heart that is so strong, so pure for others that it also brings me to tears. May God continue to strengthen you, heal you, and empower you to heal others as you continue with your Academy. Amen. :)