Dance Crew Helps Youth to Find Identity Through Use of its Own

The teenage years are a crucial time for young people because they are influenced by everything that they see and hear. They require an atmosphere that allows them to be comfortable in order to discover who they really are.

Teenagers today are sometimes not being talked to in a way they want to hear. The Urban Beats Crew of the University of Scranton gets this, and they have demonstrated how dance and music can bring together people of all ages, backgrounds, and colors in an atmosphere where everyone can be who and what they are.

The University of Scranton is arguably the most influential institution in the city. More importantly, Urban Beats has become a staple on campus over the years. The group has grown from a few left-out students who didn’t fit in anywhere else into the loudest, most excited, energized, and respected clubs on campus. It took years for the crew to establish their identity, receiving much adversity from the start.

Instead of worrying what others thought, the group turned inward, and found unity in a way most groups had never thought of. Their motto was born: “No one gets us but we get each other, and that’s what matters.” This allowed the crew to pay less attention to how people viewed them and more attention to who they were and how they felt about themselves. And nothing else mattered.

The crew felt this lesson was important for young kids to understand and live by. In the fall of 2011, the crew set out on one of its many service projects. They went to the Progressive Center: one of the community centers participating in Northeastern PA’s United Neighborhood Centers (UNC). The centers provide kids of many ages a place to go after school and spend their time. The crew thought it would be a good idea to visit the teenage group and spend some time talking and teaching them some hip-hop dance. And it was.

The teenagers and UNC coordinator Amanda McIver wanted the crew to come back as soon as possible. So Urban Beats Crew visited the teenagers again in the spring, every other week. Soon, long lasting relationships between crew members and kids would form. Crew President Brian McGinly had some words to say about the relationships that were built.

“It didn’t take long for the kids to open up to us, personally. We knew some of them hadn’t had it easy from talking to the coordinators who would say every week, ‘You have no idea how much this means to them.’ From our crew’s history, we know what it’s like to feel adversity when trying to find your identity. We wanted to give them the opportunity to forget all their worries and just have fun. But most importantly, we wanted them to be able to be themselves and know that they are unique.”

After weeks of dancing, Urban Beats Crew wanted the kids to perform one of the routines at their end of year show.

At the show, the kids danced passionately, and were rushed by UBC to congratulate them. But that wasn’t all. At the end of the show, the crew surprised the UNC kids with a check for $500. The money was given to go towards music equipment for the kids to dance. The check was given because of the tremendous bond that the crew shared with the kids. They remain close today, and will so in the future.

More About This Charity

Region

Northeast

Category

Most Influential College Student or College Organization

Name

Urban Beats Crew

Impact

  • This College Organization raised $500 in the past year
  • This College Organization helped 25 people
  • Donated $500 to UNC in the Scranton community and taught children how to dance. This influences them to grow in a unique way and be themselves.

Works In

United States

Learn More

matrix.scranton.edu/student-clubs/urban-beats/index.shtml

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