Alumni News

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UW-Madison alum Searles named Dance Educator of the Year in Texas

January 18, 2017

UW-Madison alumna Karen Searles was recently named the Dance Educator of the Year by the Texas Dance Educator’s Association (TDEA).

Karen Searles
Searles received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and a BS in Dance Education from the School of Education’s Dance Department in 2004.  Today, Searles leads the dance program at Cedar Ridge High School in Round Rock, Texas.

Searles was nominated for the award by her peers. TDEA is a professional organization that allows dance educators the opportunity for staff development and networking. It provides professional development and work towards the betterment of dance education and help teachers provide quality dance education throughout Texas.

According to a news release from the school, "Searles is a strong advocate for dance education and sponsors the organization Texas Future Dance Educators. The group works with individuals who show career interest as dance educators. Started as a small district chapter, it has been adapted by the TDEA and will soon open up to other areas around the state.”

Meanwhile, in December the Round Rock district reported how Searles helped bring a high school mentoring and dance enrichment program to an elementary school,  and how Searles’ efforts to incorporate technology and writing skills in a dance classroom were featured in Dance Studio Life magazine.