SPC Creates Performing Arts Scholarship
The scholarship will honor Nancy Smith, a humanities instructor and academic chair.
ST. PETERSBURG – Longtime St. Petersburg College Humanities Instructor and Academic Chair Nancy Smith passed away Dec. 29 after a long battle with cancer, but her dedication to students will not end.
The Nancy Feagans Smith CoMotion Dance Scholarship will offer a monetary award each fall to a Performing Arts student at SPC.
Born and raised in St. Petersburg, Smith earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and a Master of Science in Health Education. Smith was a co-founder, director and choreographer, along with choreographer and instructor Cynthia Hennessy, of SPC’s Co-Motion Dance Theatre, which is one of Pinellas County’s only modern dance troupes. What started as a club with only five people evolved into a popular community program offering spots to any and all interested in modern dance, regardless of age or experience.
Smith came to work at SPC in 1989 as an instructor in the Humanities Department and ultimately became the academic department chair of Humanities and Fine Arts at the St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus.
Dean of Humanities and Fine Arts Jonathan Steele said Smith always showed true grace – both in dance and in everything else she did.
“Nancy was wonderful to work with because of her calm demeanor in resolving conflicts, her patient and caring approach with those most needy, and her ability to see simple solutions to confounding challenges,” Steele said.
Public Policy and Legal Studies Dean Susan Demers remembers Smith as a wonderful and giving colleague and a gifted educator who, on more than one occasion, changed people’s lives by convincing them to try dance.
“Arts educators enrich lives every day,” Demers said. “But the truly great ones change their students at the very center of who they are – how they see both inside and outside their bodies and souls and how they relate to the world. Nancy was one of that very rare breed. She will be missed, but she has left such a mark in this world.”
You can donate to the scholarship in Smith’s memory here. Select the Nancy Feagans Smith CoMotion Dance Scholarship from the drop-down menu.
Smith leaves behind her husband of 33 years, Rand Smith, three children and beloved pets.
Photo of Nancy Smith courtesy of St. Petersburg College.
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