History and Mission

Dance at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (The University of Texas-Pan American, UTPA, prior to the Fall of 2015) was housed in the Department of Health and Kinesiology since the early 1950’s. On May 1998, an 18-hour dance specialization was approved through the university curriculum process as a content area with the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies degree. On April 1999, the dance faculty of the Department of Health and Kinesiology under the College of Education, wrote a proposal for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Dance. In May 2001, the U. T. Board of Regents approved the establishment of a Bachelor of Science in Dance degree at UTPA. A milestone was reached in the 2002-03 academic year at UTPA. The implementation of the Bachelor of Science Degree in Dance was underway. The Degreed Programs consisted of three option tracks: Dance Degree Plan (Teacher Certification), Dance Degree Plan (Performance), and a Minor in Dance. In September 2004, the degree was changed to a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Dance. In the fall of 2008, the Dance Program was moved to the College of Arts and Humanities and created the Department of Music and Dance. In the Fall of 2015, with the creation of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV), the Dance Program became part of the UTRGV College of Fine Arts where it is currently located.


The mission of the BFA in Dance is to provide a broad coverage of dance training, including dance technique and performance skills, choreography, historical and cultural dimensions of dance, and principles of teaching. Students will be prepared to teach dance in a public/ private school setting, or to continue dance study at the graduate level or in the professional dance context.