NEW YORK – Many college freshmen leave schoolwork behind over winter break, but Sasha Campbell planned to head straight to the dance studio near her hometown of Paris.

A dance major at Long Island University’s Brooklyn campus in New York City, she’d been told to work on her stage presence. That’s exactly what she intended to do.

“I had a lot of confidence,” she said, recalling the days when she was still in high school and was the senior dancer at Deb Irons’ Art Moves Dance Studio in Norway. “I just need to learn to take that (confidence) wherever else I go.”

“It will be good to go home and try to get the stage presence back,” she said.

Sasha is sometimes intimidated by fellow students who are more familiar with the dance scene in New York, but she plans to get over that. She still is thrilled with her choice of school.

Academically, she noted, her first semester was awesome. “I felt like I was completely in the right spot.” Sasha added that she’s excited about taking a tap dancing class in the spring.

Her biggest challenge as she prepared to go home for winter break appeared to be finalizing travel plans. Just a few days before she was scheduled to fly north, New York City’s transit workers went on strike.

Few subways or buses were running and the only good way to get around was on foot or by taxi.

“The taxis are full,” Sasha said, and the city had enacted an emergency plan that required people to car pool to even enter Manhattan.

But the strike was over before Sasha left, meaning her travel plans should have gone off without a hitch. She was hoping they would, in part because she wanted to make it home for a holiday performance at Art Moves.

“I’m gonna go straight to the studio show as soon as I get in Friday,” she said.

– By Kelly Morgan

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