Dance therapy

Kailea Tilden dances in front of the Millenium Arch on campus.

Kailea Tilden dances in front of the Millenium Arch on campus. Photo by Sam O’Keefe

Everyone has a passion for something. For Kailea Tilden, that passion is dance.

Through dance, Tilden can show off her own uniqueness. Teaching others to dance, she says, helps her draw out their confidence and creativity, too.

“Dancing definitely improves the lives of others,” says Tilden, who graduated cum laude with a bachelor of science degree in biological sciences in May 2015. “It’s fun, it’s exercise, and you get to express yourself and be creative. It’s just a really great experience for everybody that’s involved.”

Tilden taught dance at a Rolla studio for two years before starting her own program at the local health and fitness center.

Tilden performs during a production of "The Little Mermaid" by the S&T Ballet and Dance Club.

Tilden performs during a production of “The Little Mermaid” by the S&T Ballet and Dance Club. Photo by Sam O’Keefe

“I am the coordinator and sole instructor for the program, which has around 25 kids and includes seven different classes,” says Tilden, who has coached and choreographed for competition dancers for three years.

As a student, Tilden served as president of the Missouri S&T Ballet and Dance Club for two years. There, she directed, choreographed and starred in several full-scale dance productions and led a group of over 40 student dancers and children from the community.

“I am in the position to share my love of dance with many people each day – from toddlers to adults,” she says.

Tilden was also a member of the Scrubs Pre-Med Society. She completed over 60 hours of observation with physicians and physical therapists and plans to use that experience as a platform to launch her next endeavor.

Tilden shakes S&T Chancellor Cheryl Schrader's hand as she crosses the stage at commencement in May 2015.

Tilden shakes hands with S&T Chancellor Cheryl B. Schrader’s as she crosses the stage at commencement in May 2015. Photo by Sam O’Keefe

Next year, Tilden plans to enroll in physical therapy school. Her ultimate goal? Becoming a dancer-specialized physical therapist. Tilden believes that through dance, she will be able to help others better express themselves while they improve their physical and mental health.

“Dance is everything that I do,” Tilden says. “It has shaped me physically, mentally and emotionally. Everything I do has been influenced by dance in some way. I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t dance. I can’t imagine.”

By Sam Ogunmolawa

Cell (phone) biologist

Daniel Miller, a recent biological sciences M.S. graduate, built a DIY microscope with less than $10 in materials and a smartphone.

Daniel Miller, a recent biological sciences M.S. graduate, built a DIY microscope with less than $10 in materials and a smartphone. Photo by Sam O’Keefe.

Armed with a smartphone and a few dollars’ worth of trinkets and hardware store supplies, Daniel Miller is helping Missouri S&T students gain a new perspective on the world of cellular biology. [Read more…]

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