Internship Stories

Internships allow you to enhance your skills and apply classroom knowledge to a professional environment. They provide a supervised short-term experience in a career field of interest. Internships focus on the learning that takes place as a result of the work you are doing.

There are many internship opportunities for Luther dance students. Learn more about different dance internships from Visual and Performing Arts faculty or visiting the Find Internships page. Other internship stories from students in theatre and art can be found on the VPA website

Abigail Suhr

Abigail with the students of Yaro Dance CompanyWhen: January 2016
Where: Yaro Dance Company, Urbandale, Iowa
Major: Dance with a Psychology minor

Abigail interned with a Yaro dance company, a professional dance company in Urbandale, Iowa. She wanted to learn how a company produces their shows and was glad that one of her duties involved attending board meetings. In these meetings, she learned about choosing dates, venues, and marketing techniques for a season of dance. She also assisted in dance rehearsal. That allowed her to compare Luther’s Movement Fundamentals courses to ballet. Other duties she had included costume upkeep, poster distribution, and being a stagehand during performance. The most rewarding part of her internship was when she saw her name in a program and knew she had done her part to earn it. Abigail’s internship taught her that she wants to be more confident in sharing her ideas because dance is a collaborative art form.

Christie Owens

Christie OwensWhen: Summer 2015
Where: The Painted Turtle
Major: Dance

Christie spent her summer working at The Painted Turtle, a Serious Fun camp in Lake Hughes, California. Founded by Paul Newman, Serious Fun camps provide programs for children with life-threatening and chronic illnesses. Christie taught a creative arts program and worked as a cabin counselor for girls and boys ages seven to sixteen. As a counselor, her daily activities included helping the kids with morning routines, getting ready for bed, eating, and having fun. With the creative arts program, Christie facilitated theatre games, warm-ups, improvisation, movement, dress-up, and imaginative play. Throughout the summer, Christie gained new medical knowledge about the campers’ illnesses while maintaining an energetic and positive outlook. The most rewarding part of her job was creating an atmosphere where the campers could forget their illnesses and just be kids. Christie’s studies at Luther thoroughly prepared her for the work. Her experiences on campus helped her to confidently teach theatre, yoga, music, and dance. She was fortunate enough to dance with kids of all abilities several times a day. She passionately believes that dance can be created by anybody and by adapting the dances to suit her campers’ needs, she gave the kids the opportunity to explore their own creative processes through dance.

Kajsa Jones

Kajsa Jones head shot.When: January, 2015
Where: Springboard for the Arts and Nautilus Music-Theater
Major: Management

Kajsa spent her January assisting Springboard for the Arts, an artist resources organization that connects artists with communities, and Nautilus Music-Theater, a small music-theater company in the Twin Cities that creates original music, theater, and opera pieces, as well as innovative productions of existing work. Her involvement with Nautilus included observing an artistic team and filling the role of production assistant for a local performing arts production of “Fugitive Songs,” where she was a part of the rehearsals and performance. Putting up a production in three weeks was complex and difficult, but Kajsa found it very rewarding to be a part of the process. At Springboard, Kajsa helped monitor the Artist Resource Center, attended a resource fair, and worked with the company’s online Artists Services Directory to build a more efficient process for the community. The staff at both organizations helped Kajsa understand what possibilities are available for her as a future artist and administrator. She admires the people she worked with and feels many of the connections she made will continue to be strengthened in the future.

Deveny Miles

Denevy MilesWhen: January, 2015
Where: Dry Run Studio
Major: Biology/Dance

Deveny spent this past January as an intern with locally owned Dry Run Studio. She helped brainstorm, plan, and execute several artistic projects connected to Body of Water the interdisciplinary production performed at Luther College. The projects Deveny worked on varied from art installments around Decorah, to a participatory performance on campus and the planning of several educational workshops for different age groups, combining dance and biology. All of these projects were designed to raise awareness about local water issues and a general awareness of water usage. During her time with Dry Run Studios, Deveny was surprised how much thought, time, and work is put into the artistic process, from discussing many possibilities all the way through the execution of the final projects. She learned to collaborate with other artists, discussing and trying new ideas and concepts. She experienced the process of finding a venue for the finished projects, not only an available space, but the one that would showcase the project the best. Finally, the workshops that she helped develop showed her how the arts can inform and improve the understanding of other disciplines for people of all ages.

Brooke Stauffer

Luther student Brooke StaufferWhen: January, 2015
Nordic Chiropractic

This past January, Brooke spent her time as an intern with Dr. Laurie Meinholz--a Luther dance alumna--at Nordic Chiropractic in Decorah.  She completed tasks such as scheduling patients, taking payments, and helping Laurie with other tasks that come with owning your own business.  She even helped transfer patient files from hard copies to an electronic health record keeping system online for patient records and note taking.  This helped cut down on paper, save time, and keep the day running smoothly.  Working in a health care facility that is owned and operated by a single doctor helped Brooke realize the value of meeting and getting to know patients on a personal level.  This internship gave her insight that will be beneficial in her business management and accounting career by understanding the big picture of what goes into operating a business, rather than specializing in one area.

Alyssa Wildenauer

Internship Story - Alyssa WildenauerWhen: January, 2015
Where: St. Croix Therapy
Major: Psychology

St. Croix Therapy in Hudson, Wisconsin is a clinic that offers therapeutic services to children and adults. As a non-profit whose mission is “reaching higher potential and creating new opportunities,” they incorporate therapeutic services with social and emotional interactions to improve the quality of life for children and adults. Since it was a volunteer based internship, Alyssa got to experience a wide variety of tasks such as shadowing staff, interacting with client sessions, and working on projects ranging from cleaning bathrooms to creating handouts for future interns. Her favorite part was interacting with clients and therapists, which helped build excitement for a possible future with occupational therapy. One key project Alyssa worked on during her internship was creating an example packet for future interns who wanted a letter of recommendation from St. Croix Therapy. By including a personal statement, resume, skills, and strengths, the organization can write a more direct and focused letter to benefit the intern. Overall, this experience helped Alyssa discover what it might be like to work in a clinical setting, making her feel more informed and prepared for the future.

Holly Williams

Luther student Holly Williams, '15When: January, 2015
Crave Dance Studio

Crave Dance is a dance studio in Decorah, Iowa dedicated to providing quality instruction that focuses on technique while fostering creativity and a love of movement.  Dance classes are available for ages three to adult. Holly spent January of 2015 interning at Crave Dance Studio. During her internship Holly both taught and observed classes while also learning more about the business side of running a dance studio. She worked to create mock start up budgets and a timeline of the skills and abilities of children and adults. Through this internship Holly was able to focus on her goal of opening a dance studio while gaining hands on experience in both the studio office and the teaching dance classes.