The College Ballroom E-mail Network is a group of e-mail contacts at colleges and universities around the world. Its purpose is to help one-on-one communication between collegiate ballroom dancers; for example, trading invitations to dance events, talking about college ballroom issues, and helping college dancers find dance halls and partners when they travel or move.
The College Ballroom E-mail Network currently has contacts at well over 300 schools, in more than 40 US states, more than half the Canadian provinces, and over 25 other American, European, Oceanian, Asian and African countries. Our member schools include two- and four-year colleges, research universities, and technological institutes. Our contacts include students, faculty, staff, alumni, and other affiliates of the member schools; some of our schools have on-campus ballroom clubs, some have off-campus student groups, and some have unaffiliated but concerned ballroom dancers.
Unlike the worldwide ballroom mailing list (firstname.lastname@example.org) or rec.arts.dance, the CBEN is not an e-mail or Usenet discussion group; instead, it's a group of college dancers who contact each other one-on- one. Discussions involving all of the contacts are rare; mostly they're between small groups of schools.
Created by Henry Neeman, then of the Dancing Illini, the college ballroom dance club at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the CBEN has been growing for over five years. The CBEN members have expanded it by finding new members when they post to the worldwide ballroom mailing list and to rec.arts.dance, through webpages, by member referrals, and by face-to-face meetings. We've been happy to help each other in planning and running dance events, in meeting other college dancers, and in starting new college dance clubs.
If you're a dancer at any college or university, we'd like to hear from you. If your school is already a member of the CBEN, we'll be happy to point you to your school's contact; if not, we'd like you to think about becoming your school's contact, or, if you feel that you aren't the best person for it, we'd be grateful for your help in finding someone else.
What do the contacts do? Well, that's up to each person. Some just answer the occasional "where can I dance in your area" note; others are more active. Myself, I've used the network to learn what ballroom dancing is like in other countries; to help people find ballrooms and partners when they travel or move; to invite people to local dance events and to make going to theirs easier; to help people at other schools start clubs; to talk about college ballroom issues; and to make new friends.
What's the catch? Well, like any contact network, the CBEN can't exist without new members -- and since college folks are always moving, by graduating and so on, our membership is constantly changing. So we have a simple rule: you only get the contact list by being on it. We think it's a fair trade.
If you're interested in the College Ballroom E-mail Network -- if you want to join, to learn who your school's contact is, or just to learn more about it -- please send e-mail to the address below. We look forward to hearing from you!
Henry Neeman, administrator
College Ballroom E-mail Network
University of Oklahoma, Norman OK USA
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