Dean College students at their performing arts internships

Whether you’re majoring in one of our many programs in Theatre, Dance, Dance BFA or Arts and Entertainment Management, you’ll find a wide variety of opportunities to pursue a career in the performing arts. And what better way to gain experience and explore potential career paths than through an internship? Two of our students spoke with us about their internships this semester, what they’ve been learning and how Dean has helped prepare them for the future.

Sarah Drinkwater ’23, a Dance major and member of the Honors Program, is interning at L’Ecole de Ballet, a dance studio in Littleton, MA. In addition to her internship, Sarah is actively involved on campus, serving as the president of Dean Community Outreach, secretary of the National Society of Leadership and Success and a resident assistant for Dean’s Summer Arts Institute.

At L’Ecole de Ballet, Sarah wears many hats, working remotely to complete business management and administrative tasks, such as student registration, responding to emails, designing and distributing newsletters, and updating social media, as well as teaching a variety of dance classes in person whenever she can. Sarah credits the experience and knowledge she’s gained at Dean with helping her succeed at her internship. She is able to take what she’s learned in the Dance program, including anatomy and physiology, dance composition and dance technique, and apply a variety of different perspectives to her own teaching practices as she helps shape the next generation of dancers. “My experience at Dean has definitely played a role in building my sense of self-confidence, and that has helped tremendously when it comes to the work I do at L’Ecole,” said Sarah. “I am so grateful for all the professors and faculty here at Dean; I am frequently encouraged to take on new challenges, and I always have a village of people willing to assist me when obstacles get in the way as well. Even in just my short time at Dean so far, I feel that I am already more equipped to take on the workplace.”

Sarah transferred to Dean in her sophomore year after realizing there was a gap in her life without the performing arts, and remembering the initial interest she had in Dean’s Dance program while in high school. “I think that this strong passion I have for dance has continued to grow even after 20+ years because the dance world is constantly evolving and changing,” she explained. “No matter what, there’s always room to grow and learn, and I love that this field is never stagnant.” And it turned out to be the right decision: Sarah is grateful for the community she’s found and the opportunities she’s gained through the Dance program. “My favorite thing about being a Dance major at Dean is feeling a part of a tight-knit and supportive community. It’s rare to find such a strong Dance program within a school as small as Dean, and I have found that Dean really has the best of both worlds. Everybody within the Joan Phelps Palladino School of Dance has welcomed me in with open arms and has always been invested in helping me succeed.”

Over in the world of theatre, Baxter Nichols ’22 is an Arts and Entertainment Management major and secretary of the Arts and Entertainment Management Club. This semester, he’s interning at the Franklin School for the Performing Arts (FSPA) and will be the production/tech assistant for FSPA’s production of “Mary Poppins,” working alongside lighting, stage management and other behind-the-scenes roles. After being surrounded by theatre and entertainment his entire life, Baxter is excited to apply what he’s been learning in the classroom into a real-world setting.

“I have taken what my professors have taught me and used it to prepare myself for this internship,” he explained. “The fact that I am now in an internship that will not only be the start of a potential career path for me, but also getting a start on something that I am truly passionate about is so amazing.” In addition to support from his professors, Baxter is grateful for the entire community on campus. “My favorite thing about Dean College is the close community. Everyone here is so supportive, and it is comforting to hear that at Dean, there is no judgement on what you want to pursue.”

Interested in pursuing a career in dance, theatre, entertainment and more? Learn more about our performing arts programs.