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Author Topic: Financing and supporting college teams  (Read 558 times)
phoenix13
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« on: May 15, 2013, 12:49:44 PM »

Wow.  This board is dead. lol.   Not at all representative of college teams overall, at least in the US.  There are some very active and visible teams, particularly in the YCN (a sub-group of USA Dance) in the US.  AFAIK, these teams tend to be very heavily skewed toward competitive, not social dance, although there are some ballroom organizations, such as MIT, that have both.

One thing I've often heard from collegiate competitors is that it's very, very expensive.  And of course, dancesport is expensive even if you're older, established and have a job. But,if you're a fulltime student, the cost could become prohibitive.

Question: How do college teams support the habit, so to speak? Have you heard of creative ways in which ballroom teams raise cash?  Do you have ay ideas that might be able to help?
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Dona nobis pacem.
millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

Posts: 220


« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2013, 09:36:52 AM »

My last team has an interesting dynamic between comp/social dances. So we have this huge social dance org - that has hundreds of members, ranging from college student to seniors. And our team, which focused more toward the comp side - but we also welcome people wanting to just improve their dancing. Then we have yet another dance group focuses more on the showcase side. To make things slightly more complicated, our school also offers ballroom classes, and you need to go social dancing at least a few times to pass the class - so that is another influx of new faces, though they generally don't stay. Both teams are quite heavily involved in the social dance scene. I mean, one of the main purpose of ballroom dance is to, heck, go out there to dance and to have fun! And it is a great way to practice your dancing (and floorcraft) without the pressure. And due to our training, we are highly "visible" during the social dance, and I know a few people joined our team after seeing us at the social.

As for how college teams try to survive? Obviously I have never involved in the inner circle, but I have heard, talk enough to get a sense, so some grain of salt is advised here. I guess it is like all business, increase income, decrease cost, basically keep a positive flux of money. The main income comes from 1) Support from schools, which plays a pretty big part. 2) Increase memberships through having more new students, and to have a better rate of keeping students. Also, having great coaches live near by helps. 3) related to 2: good promotion. And there are various way to cut down the cost, student instructor is a really good one - that could save you a few thousand dollars per semester.

I know a team has a rather elitist approach - but they are one of the largest and most successful teams in the US, so what do I know - that has a huge (a few hundred, from what I have heard) of beginner which were taught by student instructors. And anything beyond mere beginner, you have to be "invited" - and each level only have about 4~5 couples (they will go as far as pairing partner for you, at least at the beginning). These people were then coached by professionals, having 2~4 hours of group lessons from coaches directly. I guess that is how they get so good.

I have heard of this idea - a "mentor program" of a sort.
http://www.dance-forums.com/threads/have-you-fired-a-student.42679/page-10#post-1000737

Basically, the poster suggested to have a "mentor program" - which I thought about it when I was on the team. According to the poster, people came through this progam are much more dedicated to the team, willing to stick out, willing to practice on their own, and having better comp results. Which seems to be quite nice.
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phoenix13
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« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2013, 10:14:51 AM »

Lots of stuff to think about, there, and I will reply more later.Smiley

Right at the moment,though, I have a question.    What possible income do ballroom teams have, other than donations/fundraisers?  I can't imagine.

Prize money? Scholarships?  Revenue from dances?

I'm coming up short on ideas.
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Dona nobis pacem.
millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

Posts: 220


« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2013, 10:31:09 AM »

Again, this might not be true for all teams, but I think the main sources are memberships fee (let's say, 100 dollar per person per semester, with 100 people = 10k per semester. Not too shabby, I'll say), school's fund (not sure how large that is), and probably some scholarships/sponsorship. I bet people get pretty creative to make money.

Oh, I know a team, which do shows, seems to get their main fund through tickets (of their shows).
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phoenix13
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« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2013, 10:54:52 AM »

Oops. I forgot about activity fees.  College was a long time ago. Grin

Yes.  I can see that shows would be a great source of revenue for big teams like BYU,for example,that has a strong, well-known team.   Smaller,newer, struggling teams?  Uhhh...  car wash on Saturday? lol
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Dona nobis pacem.
millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

Posts: 220


« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2013, 11:34:29 AM »

Oops. I forgot about activity fees.  College was a long time ago. Grin

Yes.  I can see that shows would be a great source of revenue for big teams like BYU,for example,that has a strong, well-known team.   Smaller,newer, struggling teams?  Uhhh...  car wash on Saturday? lol

Well, you just have to be better than...nothing really Wink. I mean, your audiences aren't world class dancers, but just average Joe - the Dancing With The Star is a good example. Of course, the ticket is probably going to be cheap enough for college students...hmmm, maybe it just isn't a good idea at all. Let's say 10 dollars per entry fee, with 200 crowd (which is kinda on the large side) is measly 2k...And from my understanding, that isn't much. Now I have great respect for the other team on my Uni  Shocked.
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phoenix13
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« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2013, 11:49:03 AM »

By the time you figure in the costs of renting a venue, etc, it would be hard to raise money with a dance performance,IMHO.
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Dona nobis pacem.
millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

Posts: 220


« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2013, 11:58:27 AM »

By the time you figure in the costs of renting a venue, etc, it would be hard to raise money with a dance performance,IMHO.

Therefore my great respect. They must have car washing hard during the weekends Tongue. J.k.

On the other hand, my team (well, last team) did shows free...and provided pro shows. But we have memberships fee, and I think that the other team is completely free.
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phoenix13
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« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2013, 12:19:59 PM »

Which explains why so many teams have to solicit donations of costumes and shoes.
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Dona nobis pacem.
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