'I Have Loved Dancing Here at Pacific'
Lianda Lonergan ’21 remembers her first dance class around the age of 8.
She was already a gymnast, and her coach hoped ballet training would help her team improve their floor routines.
“I remember very distinctly learning the specific hand positions and all the specificity and the little intricacies with your hands for the positions,” she said.
Since then, dance has only become a bigger part of Lonergan’s life.
“Dance has been my go-to any time I need an escape from the world, when I need to let go, or I need to figure out a problem,” she said.
Growing up in upcountry Maui, Hawai‘i, she trained and performed with Maui Academy of Performing Arts.
Today, she’s a four-year member of the Pacific Dance Ensemble and a dance major at Pacific University, where she’s also studying exercise science, psychology and French while planning a career in physical therapy. She hopes to specialize in preventative medicine for dancers.
“I have loved dancing here at Pacific,” she said. “It’s such a wonderful opportunity to be in such a small, close-knit group of dancers. I’ve learned so much, and I’ve grown so much being here. All of our professors are wonderful, and they always push us to be our best and do things that we don’t even think that we can do, but they know we can do it. They push us to do it, and we are always better dancers for it.
“I’ve learned a lot about myself.”