Dance Partnership

Dance Partnership

MIT and Wellesley: Dancing Cheek to Cheek for 40 Years.

If it’s not a T-shirt slogan, it ought to be—on a special anniversary shirt.

Back in 1974, a group of students from the two schools got together to dance informally a couple of times a week. The MIT Ballroom Dance Club was born, and from it grew the MIT and Wellesley Ballroom Dance teams, which today are often partnered for the waltz, foxtrot, and rumba in competition.

Clio Flikkema ’17 (left), one of the team’s co-captains, practices with her partner 16 hours a week at MIT, under the watchful eye of professional coaches. “It’s like playing a varsity sport,” she says. “It’s very time-intensive.”

Flikkema, who was a professional ballet dancer during a gap year before Wellesley, and her partner, Corey Cleveland, MIT ’17, have garnered a passel of competition honors after only a year together. But there’s another reward: making connections with students from Holy Cross to Columbia. “It’s a very friendly social environment,” she says. All the more reason to keep up her artistry and athleticism—backward, and in heels.

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