Saumirah McWoodson began her dance training at the Westlake School for the Performing Arts in Daly City, California, at the age of 5. It was during her years at WSPA that Saumirah fell in love with the art of dance, gained experience as a performer and competition dancer, and had the opportunity to work with world-renowned choreographers and ballet masters, including Alexei Badrak and Vassili Mountain.
While studying dance education in New York City from 2009 to 2010, Saumirah had the privilege of taking class from Franco De Vita and studying under Raymond Lukens, Principal and Artistic Associate, respectively, at the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at the American Ballet Theatre. In addition to her classical ballet training, Saumirah has studied tap, jazz, hip hop, modern dance and music. She takes pride in her eclectic training in the arts and enjoys incorporating her diverse experiences into her framework as an educator.
Merging her love of the arts, education, and travel, Saumirah has worked both as an arts and academic educator in the San Francisco Bay Area, Southern California, Virginia, New York City, on United States Military bases in Belgium and Germany, and briefly in schools in the Dominican Republic. In November 2011, Saumirah was chosen as a John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Any Given Child Artist in Residence, which allowed her to bring dance-integrated science lessons to 1st, 2nd, and 5th grade students in Sacramento, California, throughout the spring of 2012.
Purposeful to remain involved with all aspects of Dance Daze, Inc., Saumirah enjoys training teaching interns, serving communities through the organization, and teaching Dance Daze® classes whenever she can. She can often be found on college campuses meeting with higher education professionals and Dance Daze in Schools interns, at elementary schools observing Dance Daze in Schools teaching artists, or at community centers volunteering for her philanthropy organization, Dance Daze in the Community. Outside of Dance Daze®, Saumirah enjoys regularly volunteering, reading good books and witty blogs, and spending hours at coffee shops.
Saumirah holds a Master of Arts degree in Curriculum and Instruction, a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of the Pacific. She is also an American Ballet Theatre Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Primary through Level 5 of the ABT® National Training Curriculum. Saumirah is a member of the American Camp Association and an alumna of Alpha Phi Omega National Service Fraternity. She is currently working toward becoming a Certified Integrated Learning Specialist through the Alameda County Office of Education.