Shelley (nee Ruettiger) Poropat is no stranger to the JCA dance program, having led the Angels as head coach from 2003 to 2014, before a family relocation to New York for one year. For the past three seasons, Poropat has served as Natalie Minarich’s top assistant coach in the program. JCA athletic director Mr. Dan Sharp is proud to announce that Poropat will again takeover the reigns of the dance program.
Poropat, a ’97 graduate and four year-member of JCA’s dance program, has a wealth of experience in the dance world, beginning with her training at Mary Ann Corcoran’s studio in Joliet, and BDA Dance Company, where she currently teaches Creative Movement and three-year old ballet. Poropat danced with BDA all the way up through her high school career at JCA, then moved onto Arizona State University, where she spent four years as a member of the Sun Devils competitive dance team. An, ’01 graduate of ASU, Poropat coached for three years at a local Arizona high school while in college, and then joined JCA as its head coach in 2003. Poropat said, “I’m extremely ready and excited for this upcoming year in preparing the girls both mentally and physically for a successful season.”
Poropat leads a program rich in tradition, with four UDA National Championships (’86, ’87, ’88, ’90) and numerous National semi-finals appearances. This past year, at the UDA Nationals in Orlando, Florida at Walt Disney World, the Angels made it to the national semi-finals for their jazz routine. At UDA Regionals in January at the University of Illinois-Chicago JCA placed 3rd in Hip-Hop and 5th in Jazz for their lyrical performance. In January of 2016, the varsity dance program also recorded semi-final finishes at UDA Nationals in both the Lyrical and Hip-Hop categories.
Sharp added, “we are very excited to have Shelley back with us as head coach once again after leading the program from ’03-‘14. She was an outstanding coach before and brings a ton of experience as a high school coach, private instructor, and collegiate dancer at Arizona State University. Above all, her love for our school is second to none.”