Graduate School & Degree
I teach Jazz Dance courses to undergraduate students in the Dance Department at Temple University. I also teach the course Arts in Community and Economic Development to graduate students in the Graduate Urban Studies Program at Eastern University. Lastly, I am the owner of Roger Lee Dance, LLC, founder of Philadelphia Arts and Entrepreneurship Festival, and on faculty at several dance studios in Pennsylvania.
I started dancing at the age of 12 as an original member and co-captain for FOX 29’s Good Day Philadelphia Dance Team. I went perform live as a backup dancer for American Idol 2 Winner Ruben Studdard and Gospel recording artist Vicki Winans on 6 ABC’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. I then performed live as a backup dancer for The Voice Season 6 Finalist Matt Schuler on 6 ABC’s WaWa Welcome America Celebration of Freedom Ceremony. The performance took place in front of entertainment legend Debbie Allen, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, and United States Vice President Joe Biden. Before starting and performing with my own dance company, I performed professionally for several modern dance companies in the region. Outside of performance I am a dance instructor with 12 years of experience. I teach literally everyone from ages 4 to 94! My teaching highlights include Broadway Dance Center, The Rock School for Dance Education, Philadelphia School of Dance Arts at Philadanco, Koresh School of Dance, Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, Temple University, University of Pennsylvania, and Drexel University. I also have experience producing over 15 dance concert series and outdoor festivals. Lastly, am the host of the Roger Lee Dance Podcast coming to iTunes in January 2015. I simply love dance, my family, my partner, and my hometown of Philadelphia, PA.
Impact of Ursinus
Ursinus helped me practice my career as a student. The school allowed me to run Escape Velocity Dance Company, re-start the UCTV Station, become the Features Editor of The Grizzly, be an RA, Tour Guide, Alumni Relations Associate, Bridge Program participant, and Class Vice President while holding two majors and a packed social life. Ursinus taught me to balance out work and play, live on my own, and have the time of my life. These great experiences have shaped me in more ways than I can tell. I am forever thankful to Ursinus for the deep impact it has had on my life. I am also honored to be the 2014 Rising Star Alumni Award recipient.
Piece of Advice
I encourage students to pick a path that they are most passionate about. They should not be afraid to focus their dreams. Money, fame, and titles are not everything, nor can they buy you happiness. Passion will keep you going and happy. Find that passion, pick majors and classes that teach you about that passion, and be bold enough to pursue it upon graduation. You may surprise yourself! And in the end, the money, fame, and titles will come on their own.
Paying It Forward
I offer a coaching program for inspiring artists and entrepreneurs. During 60-minute online, phone, or e-mail consultations, I help my clients plan and execute their creative careers. I also give back by speaking to students at K-12 schools about professional development, careers in the arts, and life skills. I also teach dance in inner-city schools.