News | 4/1/2010 2:56:59 PM | Bandits.com
This week's Girl of the Week is Melissa, a member of the Buffalo Bandettes Dance Team. She is in her sixth year with team, having joined immediately after finishing high school and has served as a co-captain for the past three seasons.
Melissa started dancing at a young age and the passion has stayed with her through the years.
"I started dancing in a studio before I turned three years old. I studied tap, jazz, ballet, hip-hop and lyrical. I started cheerleading in middle school and danced competitively throughout high school. I also coached cheerleading while in high school and college," said Melissa.
"In 2008, I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from Canisius College in Buffalo. My degree is concentrated in Integrated Marketing Communications. Outside of dancing, I work full-time as a development specialist at a foundation in Buffalo. I write grant proposals, coordinate fundraising events and cultivate corporate and community funds for the non-profit organization that my foundation supports," she continued.
The best part of lacrosse for Melissa is the fast-paced energy of the game, which transfers from the players to the fans.
"Going to your first NLL game is always a fun and exciting experience. People always want to come back."
Melissa says that the best part of being a Bandette is, in part, getting to cheer in front of the fans who make up Banditland.
"Performing in front of the best fans in the league and the unforgettable friends I have made over the years [are my favorite parts]. The energy from the Bandits' crowd is unlike any other. I see many of the same dedicated fans season after season and they never cease to amaze me.
"I consider all of my teammates as my close friends. We spend a lot of time together outside of practice and games."
Melissa is a practical, independent and focused woman, but says she is too nice sometimes. Despite that nice-girl persona, she has no room for unreliable people, saying "the only one you can count on is yourself. I believe if you want something done, you have to do it yourself."
When Melissa is not with the "multi-talented, professional and caring" ladies that make up the Bandettes, she says her perfect day would be spent with her fiance. In fact, one day soon she hopes to be on a cruise, sailing the Alaskan waters with him.
Melissa also says there are a few things about her that people may not know.
"I have a 21-year-old brother with cerebral palsy, was a straight-A student my whole life and have been a dancer for 21 of my 23 years on earth."
To find out more about Mellissa and the rest of the Bandettes Dance Team, check out their website.