Dani Kepner is the Co-Founder and Director of Art Beyond the Classroom. She is studying Studio Art-Psychology, an individualized major similar to that of a college with a Pre-Art Therapy major. The only difference is that Dani will not have an internship under an Art Therapist as an undergraduate student. Instead, she practices her love of art and her heart for helping others through this organization she created with Ally Morgret and Dr. Elizabeth Dubin.
It may be easy to think that ABC is all that Dani enjoys due to the amount of time she spends developing and sharing about the program. However, a generally unknown interest of Dani’s is coaching; specifically, coaching basketball. She played basketball for 11 years leading up to a career-ending back injury and then proceeded to assistant coach for two years. She hopes that in her future, she can practice both of her passions.
Dani believes that the mind of a coach and a mind of a leader for ABC have many overlaps: first and foremost, you always want the best for your members/players. Whether it is in action or during a “practice” or meeting, the coach/leader always desires intentional growth and personal fulfillment throughout their time. Second, though you are seemingly “in control,” a coach/leader of ABC is never fully in control of the student they are hoping to teach. In basketball and in art, you can have the best intentions to demonstrate a specific point when, in reality, the learner takes away a completely different message. It is a challenge that Dani enjoys to navigate; the perception of the human mind is fascinating and a journey worth exploring! Finally, coaching and leading in ABC involve full dedication—giving all of who you are in hopes of bettering someone else for a season, a reason, or a lifetime.
Dani has been so encouraged by the love and support of all of her friends and family around this journey she has taken through Art Beyond the Classroom. The people she has met through this program have ultimately bettered her for a lifetime and she is ever grateful for that.