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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU's Debra Knapp named 2013 Scholar/Artist of the Year

New Mexico State University College of Education Director of Dance Debra Knapp has been named the 2013 Scholar/Artist of the Year by the National Dance Association.


"Dr. Debra Knapp is the consummate professional and this award is another recognition of the excellent work that she does in the area of dance and the arts," said Michael Morehead, NMSU College of Education dean. "Debra's work is not only meaningful to the profession but to students at the university and K-12 students. Dr. Knapp is certainly deserving of this award and we are proud of her research and the wonderful dance program."

Knapp, professor of dance and the director of dance in the NMSU Department of Human Performance, Dance and Recreation, was presented with the award in April at the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance National Convention and Expo in Charlotte, N.C.

"I feel honored to be recognized as a scholar and an artist," Knapp said. "I have known the people who have received these awards in the past. They are a group of women and men that I have admired for many years. It's very humbling to be considered one of them."

Knapp also gave a lecture titled "Transformational Learning Through Reflective Practice" and taught a jazz dance course during the conference.

The recipients of the award must have a scholarly record extending more than 10 years, be currently producing scholarly materials or other creative works, have documented in-depth study of dance and be capable of communicating ideas and knowledge to selected arts groups.

Knapp has been awarded numerous accolades in dance including the 2012 National Dance Association University Dance Educator of the Year. She is continuing her work on the "Literacy Through Movement" project that evaluates how dance movement may enhance literacy among elementary school students.