Coach Merlini brings enthusiasm and knowledge of the sport, with vast experience as both a dancer and coach. While at IHA, she was senior captain of the IHA Varsity Dance during the 2015-16 season, the team’s inaugural year. That first season, the team competed in both Varsity Jazz and Varsity Pom.
Upon graduation from Immaculate Heart, Coach Merlini continued her education at Nova Southeastern University where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise and Sport Science with a minor in dance. She has taught recreational and competitive students at Dance Dimensions, New Milford, since 2015 and also taught dance classes throughout her collegiate career in Florida. Additionally, Coach Merlini currently works as a physical therapy aide at Professional Physical Therapy, River Edge.
Coach Merlini said she is thrilled to be back at IHA, a school community of which she and her sister, Anyssa’19, are truly proud to be a part. She is excited to focus on the importance of teamwork and how working together can create an everlasting bond; she is still in touch with her former IHAVDT teammates.
Coach Merlini said she is eager to meet the dance team members and learn their strengths. “I loved my experience on the IHA Dance team and I can't wait to share everything I learned with the team to create a fun experience for them,” she said. “I am most looking forward to the competitions. Although they will look different this year due to COVID-19, I am excited to watch the team work together to perform to their fullest potential.”