The Dance Project was founded in order to help schools create a safe, fun and positive environment at their dances. After watching a dance at her children’s own high school, Jamie Nicholson recognized a need for structure and alternatives to the student dancing that takes place at these events. Jamie felt that the large groups of students “grinding” on the floors of gymnasiums and cafeterias wasn’t as unavoidable as administrators and faculty seemed to think. She proposed a program to teach teens how to swing dance to popular music through The Dance Project. With help from parents and students in the community, Jamie began to organize public dances for teens where they could dance to their favorite songs, learn steps, turns and dips, and practice the polite way to ask a partner to dance.