On the same day when she received the ICDA Outstanding Senior Choral Award & John Philip Sousa Band Award honoring her for her leadership in the VSHS choir and band progams, Baylee Bruce also received words of praise for leadership on the VS Voyagers Dance team as she signed with St. Ambrose University (SAU), where she will become part of the dance team there.

Baylee’s current coach, Michelle Wedemeyer, is an alum of SAU, where she was a member of one of several national championship-winning teams.

It was Wedemeyer’s connection to SAU, and her friendship with coach Danelle Langeneckert, which helped Baylee come to the attention of the SAU coach.

“She blew me away in her audition,” Coach Langeneckert said on Tuesday, as she joined Baylee and her family and Coach Wedemeyer for the formal signing.

Langeneckert said what she likes most about Baylee is her willingness to work hard.

Baylee Bruce, between VSHS coach Michelle Wedemeyer (left) and St. Ambrose University Coach Danelle Langeneckert.

Baylee said she feels at home at SAU, and is already involved in the “Big Sister-Little Sister” program which pairs incoming freshmen with upperclassmen.

Wedemeyer describes Baylee as “A role model in every way.” And as the band and choral awards presented to Baylee on Tuesday evening during Fine Arts Night honor her leadership in those programs, the Voyager members also chose her as the Voyager of the Year, honoring her leadership on the dance team. Baylee has often worked with younger Voyager members, as well as the young dancers who work with the high school team. She has also earned several individual honors while leading the Voyagers to a successful season and placing at State events.

Along with her extra-curricular activities, Baylee has also done very well academically, and has qualified for several academic scholarships at SAU.

The Fighting Bees Dance Team has won several national championships, including the 2018 NAIA title.