Hawks at Home: Shaelyn LeLievre '20

Senior Shaelyn LeLievre is learning, dancing and spending time with her family at home. The Dance & Performance Studies and Public Relations double major walks us through a day in her life in this second of our Hawks at Home series, in which students spotlight how remote learning is going in their own words.

By Shaelyn LeLievre and Julia Rubin

BILLERICA, M.A. – When you enter the RWU Performing Arts Center, something changes, according to Dance & Performance Studies major Shaelyn LeLievre. 

"When I walk in The Barn, there is a certain energy and it’s motivating," she said. "All my outside worries stop at the door and I enter a different headspace: Ready to move, ready to work and ready to create! It is definitely the people, love and support we have for one another, and the community we have created." 

Two dancers.
LeLievre dancing at RWU.

These days, as she logs into dance classes from home, LeLievre tries to recreate that feeling.

"Remote learning has been challenging with dance specifically because of the lack of space in my house. But I've been making it work the best I can by clearing out as much space as possible, and modifying exercises as needed," she said.

No matter where she is, connecting with her peers, instructors and dance practice brings her a sense of peace amidst the uncertainty.

A Dance & Performance Studies and Public Relations double major, Shaelyn shares what remote learning looks like for her and how she’s getting it done: An internship, dancing, learning, chatting with professors, and spending time with family.

Tuesday, April 28

Made bed.

8:15 a.m. Wake up, get dressed and most importantly, make my bed. A friend once told me “it’s important to make your bed, so you don’t get back in it” and I stand by that because it forces me to do work at my desk, which means I’ll actually be one thousand times more productive anyways. 

Acai bowl.

8:30 a.m. I like starting my day right. Even though I’m not the biggest breakfast person I really like smoothie bowls. So this premade acai bowl is the perfect, easy and quick way to still be eating breakfast, but nothing too big. While I eat my breakfast I start logging onto my computer and going through emails to take note of what I need to do to get myself ready for the day. 

Desk and workspace.

9 a.m. Public relations internship with Regan Communications Group in Providence. After I go through my emails, I make a list of the things I need to accomplish during this time. Because of the current situation, my internship work has been a little lighter than usual but we still are able to help out with small tasks as we can. I help with producing media lists, completing media clippings and posting calendar listings. 

12 p.m.  Lunch time – Today I kept it simple with some pasta and butter. 

Computer with online dance class.

12:30 p.m. Movement Theatre class. This class was a bit of an adjustment moving to online class. Normally, the class is mostly comprised of several in-person exercises and assignments. Without being in-person, it made things difficult because technology now has to come into play, like every other class. But my professor was really able to make it feel like our usual class as much as possible. He did this by assuring us that our videography skills, including the set up and editing, does not play a role in our grade for assignments. We use the Meetings tool on Bridges to meet during class time and use the screenshare feature so it is like we are watching each other’s projects during a live class. This allows us to simulate our regular, in-person classes as much as possible, and although isn’t ideal, it makes it feel like this isn’t a completely different class with the change of venue. 

Two people walking in the road.

2 p.m. Depending on the day and the weather of course, my family and I schedule a daily walk every day we can to get some fresh air. Today was luckily a really nice day so we got to experience the sun! After being cooped up day after day in the house, a little fresh air can go a long way and is a nice change of scenery. Off course we stay six feet a part from anyone we encounter on the walk and abide by social distancing rules. 

2:45 p.m. I used this time to really get some work done, so I don’t have to do so much homework later at night, when I’m not the most productive.

3:45 p.m. Meeting with professor. For my movement class – Advanced technique with Kathy Smith – usually we have one-on-ones to check in after our midterm presentations. With the new learning modes, she waited a little to get some feedback for all the recent assignments we have been doing, and to check in with us on how we are handling the transition to remote learning. If there’s one thing we have learned as a class, it’s that everyone learns different, even in these circumstances, and my professor has done a really great job of hearing us all out and adapting to our wishes. 

4 p.m. Get ready for dance. I get dressed in clothes that I can dance in, set up my laptop, make sure my water is filled up and clear up a space in my room. Making sure I’m ready to go for class is so important, and allows me to compartmentalize. When we would walk in the studio in The Barn, there was always a different energy from outside. All worries about homework and outside personal life left at the door, and that’s the feeling I’m trying to recreate!

Person doing a yoga stretch on the floor.


4:15 p.m. Dance class. Today was yoga day! Starting with yoga allowed us to warm up our bodies intrinsically, to get us ready to attack movement phrasing later in the class. For our movement phrasing, today we completed an arm movement pattern. Our professor, Kathy Smith, has recognized that a lot of us are struggling with space, so an arm phrase allowed us to work in the space we have but still get our brain and body working. We finished up with a short Shavasana, and ended with a Namaste, to thank our professor for class!

5:20 p.m. This is the time where I try to finish all my homework for the day, and make sure I am ready for the next day.

6 p.m. One of my favorite times of the day is dinner, because it allows everyone in the family to come together. Despite being in the same house all day, we are individually busy, so it is nice to put those responsibilities aside and enjoy each other’s company.

7:30 p.m. Being able to shower and get ready for bed around 7:30 is exciting for me, because I was always used to having rehearsals until 9:30 p.m. almost every night. I like to take advantage of it while I can!

8 p.m. As a sucker for reality TV, I’ve been binging "Chrisley Knows Best," "Busch Family Brewed" and "Don’t Be Tardy" on regular TV. But I always end the night with an episode of The Office on Netflix, because you can never go wrong with that. 

LeLievre performing at RWU. 

Looking Ahead 

LeLievre is looking forward to reuniting with her friends and family once social distancing is lifted. She's also hoping to get outside more.

"I'm excited to enjoy a beach day, or two! Summer is my favorite season, so I am hoping we will still be able to enjoy it," she said. 

Post-graduation, she'd like to pursue a career that combines her two passions. 

"With the current situation, the job market isn't showing many opportunities, but I plan to stay connected to dance and public relations in all my future endeavors, wherever that may take me!" she said. "Despite how hard it might be to continue pursuing these two career paths, I'm willing to do whatever it takes to make it possible." 

More Hawks at Home: Melissa Rodriguez '20
The Elementary Education major and Dance and English minor walks us through a day in her life of remote learning