Iliana Mendes is an 18-year-old dancer from Feasterville, Pennsylvania. She dances at The Dance Academy.

“Dance has a positive impact on my life because it taught me confidence.”

How does dance have a positive impact on your life?

Dance has a positive impact on my life because it taught me confidence. Having confidence within myself is something I’ve always struggled with. Being surrounded by people who support me and constantly give me a smile has helped me so much inside and outside the studio.

How do you want to use dance to make a positive influence on your community?

When I dance, it’s a form of expression, a form of creativity. It promotes a social outlet for me. Brings me together with others who share a common interest. It teaches me teamwork, which in turn I can use to mentor the younger dancers and show them that within their dance studio there is a safe place where they can grow, develop, and build positive relationships.