Dance therapy: a way to engage the community

Allie Pizzino ’23

“During the interview, I was ready to talk about my commitment to helping people with mental illness and my general interest in the nonprofit sector.”

Pizzino, a member of the Bowdoin Swing Dance Club who also danced in middle school and high school, never expected this aspect of her resume to show up, but when it did, she jumped at the offer to direct. a workshop. “I was like ‘oh my God, that’s a great idea! . “Someone came up to me after a dance class the other day and said it was the first time he had smiled and laughed in weeks. It made me feel really good that an hour or two of activity can do that,” Pizzino said.

She is one of nineteen students who have pursued the Winter Break Community Engagement Fund through the McKeen Center for the Common Good in Bowdoin. The program provides funding for students to spend the winter break interning at a wide variety of non-profit organizations and municipal offices. This year’s cohort includes a junior helping low-income Los Angeles high school students prepare for college, students working with immigrant groups here in Maine and elsewhere, and a senior working with a development in Cameroon, in Africa.

In addition to her dance class, Pizzino has a wide range of duties at NAMI. “It’s something different every day. One day I might be working on social media design, another I might be working on a grant application, and the next day I might be doing administrative tasks, like scanning old files or preparing for an audit. .

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