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Darrell Chism - VP of the Black Student Association and competitive hip-hop dancer

Darrell Chism
When you’re trying to decide on a college, you’ve got to talk to people who are actually students there. You’ll see where you fit in."
~ Darrell Chism, sophomore business management major

Darrell Chism’s dancing skills have come a long way since his “Whoomp There It Is” days.

But for that matter, so has he.

Chism, 20, a business management major from Kansas City, Mo., is just one of Pittsburg State’s emerging student leaders. He and a good friend both chose PSU after another high school buddy accepted a football scholarship to PSU, and it’s been the perfect place for educational and personal growth.

“When I came for my campus visit, it just felt more ‘college-y’ to me than other places,” said Chism, who quickly got involved with the Black Student Association at PSU and serves as the group’s vice president. He’s also learned a lot from his sister, who is president of the Mid-America Student Diversity Council. “I like the atmosphere here,” he said of Pitt State. “I’ve met a lot of good people who I think I’ll be friends with for a long time.”

When he isn’t in class or working with BSA, Chism prefers the spotlights of downtown Kansas City, where he’s often found performing as a competitive hip hop dancer.

Over the past three years, he’s improved his skills by watching a lot of YouTube dance tutorials and learning from the critiques of his judges.

“My style is hip-hop and very freestyle - it’s just whatever comes out. I’m good at playing to the song,” said Chism, who was named a winner in the 2011 All Styles Battle Street Jam Live in Kansas City. “I don’t know how I learned to love dancing, because my dad had no rhythm. It just sort of came out of me.”

Good at breakdancing and “popping,” Chism is also sharing his dance talents at PSU as a member of the Dance Club. It’s a fun time, he says, and a fun place.

“When you’re trying to decide on a college, you’ve got to talk to people who are actually students there,” he said. “You’ll see where you fit in.”