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Scholarship helps NWSA grad, former Top Senior pursue dream
Bryana Mainor earns first Mary Mahoney award
Published Wednesday, August 1, 2018 7:09 pm
by Ashley Mahoney | The Charlotte Post

Bryana Mainor, a junior at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia is the inaugural recipient of the Mary Mahoney Memorial Scholarship. Mainor, a Northwest School of the Arts graduate, has a 3.8 grade point average.

Bryana Mainor stands out.

A junior at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Mainor is the inaugural recipient of the Mary Mahoney Memorial Scholarship, and alumnae of The Charlotte Post Foundation’s Top Senior Program.

Mainor, a dance major with a minor in business, has maintained a 3.8 grade point average. She is vice president of community service for the National Society of Collegiate Scholars chapter at The University of the Arts, as well as a student orientation leader and tour guide.

“A lot of people, when I was growing up, would ask me what I wanted to do,” Mainor said. “I would say that I wanted to be a dancer, and they would be like, ‘oh do you have a backup plan?’ and I would be like, ‘no, I just want to be a dancer,’ and they would be like, ‘OK, maybe you should think about this,’ and I was like, ‘no I want to be a dancer.’

“That was kind of hard to hear, and then be like, ‘well, do I need a backup plan? Is this really going to work? Am I going to be able to sustain myself and have a career? As long as you have the passion and the drive and you’re doing everything that you can, you’ll be fine, and also having parents who support me is also really, really helpful. They are very, ‘you can do it. We’re behind you, as long as it’s something that you want, and you’re going to work for.’”

Mainor began dancing as a 2-year-old.

“My mom [Nicole Bell] always tells a story. I had my second birthday, and I was just bouncing up and down, and she just knew that I needed to be in dance class,” Mainor said. “I caught onto everything immediately, and I just fell in love with it.”

While Mainor fell in love with dance in Atlanta, where she attended Renaissance International School of Performing Arts, her journey took her to Charlotte.

“It really helped me find my passion for dance,” Mainor said.

She attended Northwest School of the Arts from sixth grade through graduation, as well as studying at Open Door Studios on Central Avenue.

“Bryana is one of a kind, and I mean that wholeheartedly,” said Chandra McCloud-Glover, Northwest School of the Arts’ 2018 Dance Educator of the Year. “I remember when she auditioned for Northwest as an incoming sixth-grader. I remember where she stood, because she stood out. In this group of super energetic kids, she was a quiet in the storm. Her technique was far above the others—just her poise and her grace. I remember going up to her and saying, ‘you’re doing a really good job,’ and she said, ‘thank you.’ She’s just a lovely person.”

Mainor graduated NWSA with a 4.3 GPA.

“She’s one of those students who keeps up with her grades,” McCloud-Glover said. “If she got a B, it was, ‘Miss McCloud, I noticed I got a B. What can I do to improve?’ She’s one of those students.”

Two summer intensives dominate Mainor’s time away from college: the American Dance Festival, a five-week program in Durham, and Broadway Dreams in Charlotte, which concludes on Aug. 4. She returns to school on Aug. 7, a day before her 20th birthday.

“I hope to be in a professional company after I graduate, or even do Broadway,” Mainor said.


So proud of you. Keep pursuing your dream
Posted on August 3, 2018
Great job!!!! Stay focus and keep up the good work!
Posted on August 3, 2018
Congratulations Bry! I am so proud of you. What a great example of what determination can do.
Posted on August 2, 2018

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