40th Anniversary Blog Series: No 7. Susan Gresko

No. 7: 40 Never Looked So Good: An interview with Susan Gresko, JOMDC faculty since 2004, and 40th Anniversary Faculty Honoree

Over the last 40 years we’ve held thousands of classes and taught hundreds of thousands of students. We’ve met some remarkable people over the years, and Susan Gresko is one of them! Susan is from our neighboring state of Virginia but has trained across the east coast at prestigious institutes such as National Academy of Arts in Champaign, IL, Jacob’s Pillow, and the Pennsylvania School of Ballet. Susan graduated with Highest Distinction honors from George Mason University and performed with the George Mason University Dance Company. Susan has taught youth and adult ballet, yoga, and Floor-Barre throughout the Washington Metropolitan area. At JOMDC, Susan teaches ballet to her very devout students every Monday night!

1. At what point did you realize that JOMDC would be a second home for you and for your teaching career?

My teaching career at JOM started over 10 years ago when I began as a substitute teacher for ballet and yoga classes. I remember speaking with Doug Yeuell, former Executive Director of JOMDC, on the phone and saying, “I’m going to be teaching for Joy of Motion one day.” It was not too long after that when I was offered my first ballet class on Wednesday nights at the Friendship Heights studio. I’ve been teaching at JOMDC ever since!

2. JOMDC is all about education and opportunity. As we’ve gotten older, we’ve gotten more opportunities–after 40 years in the business, the White House calls us now! What is the greatest opportunity you’ve received through JOMDC?

The greatest opportunity I have received through JOMDC is having the honor of teaching and getting to know so many wonderful students.

3. Our Workstudy Program makes it possible for adults with a passion for dance, but not necessarily the means, to take free classes! Do you teach Workstudy students?

Yes, I have taught many of them and I love the Workstudy students! It means so much to me that they are given the opportunity to take any class that is offered free of charge, and it is so special to me when they choose to take my class!

4. What is the greatest lesson getting older has taught you?

I believe that getting older should not be an excuse for not doing what you love. I’ve learned to not stress out about what I used to be able to do, and instead celebrate what I am doing now!

Don’t miss Faculty Honors featuring Susan Gresko on stage at the 40th Anniversary Gala Concert and Disco Dance Party on Friday, March 11, 2016, 7:30pm.

Join us on March 11, 2016, as we honor Susan Gresko.

What is your favorite thing about Susan’s ballet class? Leave her a comment below!