B.F.A. Program

Ailey/Fordham BFA Program

An innovative partnership between The Ailey School and Fordham University, the Ailey/Fordham Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree combines the finest in dance and liberal arts education in a 4-year program. Students complete a diverse curriculum while attending both institutions full time.

Program Overview

Located in the cultural heart of New York City, the Ailey/Fordham BFA Program offers the best of both worlds: professional dance training at the official school of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and an exceptional liberal arts education rooted in the Jesuit tradition of intellectual development and personal attention.

Admissions Criteria


  • Superior talent and potential for a dance performance career
  • Good technique training in ballet and modern dance
  • Musicality
  • Energy, creativity and the ability to communicate through movement


  • Solid B+/ A- average in a college preparatory program
  • Competitive GPA and SAT scores
  • Strong writing skills
  • Involvement in community or extracurricular activities

More information about Fordham academic admissions criteria

Admission Procedures

Prospective students must submit separate applications to both The Ailey School and Fordham University to be considered for admission.  Both applications are due November 1 for freshman admission.


Tuition and Financial Aid

Ailey/Fordham students are subject to Fordham University undergraduate tuition and fees. No additional tuition is paid to The Ailey School. For up to date information about the cost of attendance at Fordham University, please visit the Fordham University website.

More information on Fordham tuition

Financial aid for the BFA Program is offered though Fordham University. A majority of Fordham’s entering freshmen receive some form of financial assistance. To be considered for financial aid, applicants must submit both the CSS Financial Aid Profile and the FAFSA in accordance with Fordham’s financial aid guidelines.

More information at www.Fordham.edu/Finaid

Program Leadership

Melanie Person, BFA Program Director
The Ailey School, Co-Director, Ballet Department Chairperson

Edward Bristow, Ph.D., BFA Program Co-Director
Fordham University, Department of History

For questions, email the BFA Program or call 212-405-9124.