The Orange Pride Dance Team is an exciting and competitive collegiate dance squad that performs at Sam Houston State University athletic events, pep rallies, university and community events, as well as at a number of special events . The members of the team are well respected on campus and strive to support the SHSU athletic program and general school spirit.
How many members are on the team, and what do they do?
The average size of the team over the past five years has been between 20 and 30 dancers. The team performs at football games, men and women's basketball games, and numerous university and special events. The Orange Pride Dance Team takes an active role in promoting student involvement at athletic events and increasing school spirit. Just a few of their responsibilities include, but are not limited to, organizing and coordinating pep rallies and other special events, creating and distributing publicity materials, and initiating programs and activities that foster pride in the institution and a sense of excitement on campus.
How much does it cost to be on the team?
The team is supported both financially and administratively by the university, which makes participation with the squad very affordable. The university, through student service fees, pays for a number of expenses that the typical high school and/or junior college may not be able to afford. For example: all uniforms, poms, duffel bags, summer camp expenses, choreography fees, and travel expenses are paid for by the university. Dancers pay for their own summer camp outfits and shoes, which average about $175. We also utilize these outfits during the year.
If the team is selected to attend any type of competition, the university assists the team in paying for the travel expenses, hotel fees, and uniforms. In the past years the team has decided to personally purchase matching sweatshirts and other paraphernalia to wear to the National Championships, along with various memorabilia type items. Members of the team usually sponsor fundraisers throughout the year to assist the university in financing the team.
How much time is required?
Good question! Applicants should definitely take a good look at their class and work schedule and academic abilities before making the decision to try-out for the team. Fulfilling all responsibilities is definitely not easy, but we know that it can be done. Listed below is a rough estimate of the number of hours expected of team members throughout the year. This information is based on past years experiences and is subject to change.
• Attend a retreat camp in July (the date will be decided by the team at the spring tryout).
• Attend summer camp for five days at the end of July.
• Attend possible workdays the first two weekends in August.
• Return to school five days before classes begin to practice and participate with Welcome Week.
• Practice four days a week to prepare for football games and special performances. The previous squad (approximately 12 hours a week) will set practice times.
• Attend and perform at football games and pep rallies (approximately 6 hours a week).
• A number of additional evening and weekend practices are usually during Christmas Holidays
• Practice for the National Championships after final exams.
• Practice two days a week (approximately 5 hours).
• Attend and perform at one to four basketball games a week (approximately 6-12 hours a week).
Are scholarships offered?
Yes, a $500 scholarship is available for 1st year members in the Spring only with returning members receiving scholarships in the Fall and Spring. Any member receiving a scholarship must maintain at least a 2.5 cumulative SHSU grade point average.
Who helps the team make decisions and function effectively?
The university provides the team with professional advising and coaching. The staff works with the team at practices and also accompanies the team when they travel. The advisor and the coach coordinate a leadership retreat for the team before summer camp as well as on-going team building and leadership development seminars throughout the year.
Do they compete in any competitions?
Although competing is not a top priority, we do strive to compete each year through the National Dance Association (NDA). As national champions in 1998, 2005, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 Orange Pride has an established history of excellence at competition and have been featured on ESPN, ESPN 2, Fox Sports.
What are practices like?
A typical Orange Pride practice begins with a fifteen-minute stretching. The next twenty minutes are spent reviewing skills (i.e.. turns and leaps). The bulk of the practice is usually spent learning new routines and/or cleaning and perfecting previously learned routines. The team frequently concludes practice with short cardiovascular/interval workout.