In Experiential Learning

Students from the College of Fine Arts and Communications travel to gain real-world experience and share their talents while studying abroad, competing, performing and interning

Each summer, students in BYU’s College of Fine Arts and Communications take the knowledge and skills they have learned in the classroom and make their mark on communities. From Washington to New York, these students are having inspiring learning opportunities all over the country.

Read more about how students from the College of Fine Arts and Communications answered President Kevin J. Worthen’s call for inspired learning during May, June, July and August.


Ti Ti Tabor Hungarian Folk Dance Camp

(Courtesy of McCall McClellan)

This summer, dance students McCall McClellan and Ashley Paget traveled to Washington to attend the Ti Ti Tabor Hungarian Folk Dance Camp. McClellan and Paget were able to improve their technique in Hungarian folk dancing, which they began learning during a class offered on BYU campus. 

“The opportunity to dance with more experienced partners and live musicians was incredible. It was definitely unlike anything I’d experienced before. This community of Hungarian dancers and musicians were passionate about their culture,” said Paget. “They loved what they were doing — always wanted to help and teach us as newcomers. I was humbled to see how much they honor their roots and realized I should embrace where my family comes from even more.”

In addition, they were able to participate in various other activities on Raft Island — a small island in the Puget Sound — like singing, canoeing, exploring the local harbor town, swimming and forming lasting friendships. Camp participants also took a night swim to see a bioluminescent bay.


Internship with Food Blogger Tara Teaspoon

(Courtesy of Tessa Samuelsen)

BYU public relations student Tessa Samuelsen headed to the Big Apple this summer for an  internship with food blogger Tara Teaspoon (@tarateaspoon). Through this experience, Samuelsen was able to sharpen the skills she has already learned at BYU through the communications program. 

“I loved working on this side of public relations — in the recipe development and food styling aspect of the food industry,” said Samuelsen. “It’s a beautiful world, full of fascinating people and interesting foods. I learned so many things and got to acquire many new skills.”

In addition to the time spent at her internship, Samuelsen visited famous locations throughout the city, tasted the unique cuisine and saw more of what New York has to offer. 


Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet Teacher Training

(Courtesy of Ryan Hatch)

Dance student Ryan Hatch participated in a teacher training program at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet School and Company (CPYB). This school is recognized for its unique style of teaching ballet and has been known to produce highly-talented ballet dancers. 

“I was really excited to participate in the CPYB teacher training because the school has such a unique philosophy on teaching ballet,” said Hatch. “The teachers believe that anybody can be a ballet dancer — as long as they put in the work and have the necessary training. In ballet history, people have believed that you need to have the perfect body in order to succeed. At this training, they broke down how to teach children to dance and become beautiful artists.”

Hatch walked away from this experience as a more confident dancer and teacher, which will help him to inspire future ballet dancers throughout his career.

“This experience has given me so much knowledge as a dancer and a teacher,” said Hatch. “This teacher training paired with my methods of teaching classes at BYU has prepared me to teach and inspire my students.”


Communications New York Experience

(Courtesy of School of Communications)

School of Communications professor Joel Campbell and 23 students traveled to New York for an eight-week field experience. Their time spent in New York was structured around two BYU communications classes: “Media and World Religions” and “Gender, Race and Class in the Media.”

From the heart of New York City to Palmyra, students were able to learn more about others from different religions, races and cultures. One of the highlights of the trip was touring the Chabad Lubavitch Orthodox Jewish Community and learning more about the rituals of Jewish bath and synagogue. The group also had the opportunity to visit Flushing, Queens, one of the most religiously and ethnically diverse neighborhoods in America. 

At the end of their time in New York, they were joined by nearly 50 communication grads for an alumni dinner overlooking Times Square. 


Hollywood Bowl

(Courtesy of Susan Kupferer)

Recent TMA grad Susan Kupferer, the assistant stage manager for BYU’s China Spectacular! 40th anniversary tour, was able to apply what she had learned during her undergraduate studies at BYU to a real-world experience that most stage managers only dream of having. In early August, Kupferer had the wonderful opportunity to work at the Hollywood Bowl — one of the top 10 live music venues in the United States according to Rolling Stone Magazine

“Working at the Hollywood Bowl was an absolute dream,” said Kupferer. “I met and worked with so many amazing and incredibly talented people. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to do this show.”

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