“They know that what we do is quality work,” he said. “Our stuff is just as good.”
The more in depth arts program is attracting students from further away who are willing to travel to NECC for their classes.
Lindsay Michaud, of Lowell, is in her first semester at NECC. Although Middlesex Community College in Lowell is closer to her home, she was wowed by the courses offered at Northern Essex.
“The music program here is a lot better,” said Michaud, who plays the trumpet in the Jazz Ensemble. “I saw the huge list of courses and met the teachers and I knew that I wanted to go here.”
Chris Douglass, of Salisbury, plays the drums in the Jazz Ensemble. He said that although classes are hard, he can see the benefits to his education.
“There’s a lot of critiquing,” he said. “It’s tough.”
For Ashley Igartua of Haverhill, NECC is the perfect place to explore her passion for dance while she also completes a nursing degree.
“The program gives me the opportunity to grow as a dancer at a comfortable pace,” she said. “It feels like home.”
Students’ dedication to the program is helping to drive the success, said Deane.
“It’s small, but there is so much energy and life,” she said. “The students work really hard. They make friends and build the community. Our students are always around doing stuff.”
The NECC arts program will be giving many performances in the next few weeks. Here are some of the upcoming events:
Zombies and ‘Grease’ at dance performance
Zombies will rock the stage at this student dance performance titled “Forward Leap.” The zombie-inspired hip hop dance was choreographed by Dance Program Coordinator Michelle Deane. The inspiration for this dance, says Deane, came from the “overall popularity of Zombies with shows such as ‘The Walking Dead’ and ‘Being Human.’”