YOUNG entrepreneur Soma Karan has been awarded for her business skills after starting a dance school as a teenager.
The owner and principal teacher at Limited Edition Dance in Cleveland, Ms Karan received the Local Business Network’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year award after opening her business at the beginning of 2018 at the age of 19.
She said she had always been passionate about dance, but had disliked the over-competitive nature of dance classes she had taken part in as a child.
“Everywhere I went I found that (dance students) were so competitive, and (my sister and I) could never fit in with the cliques,” she said.
“I wanted to create a space where kids never felt like that, where if they've never danced before or if they're advanced dancers, they can all participate together and make new friends.”
Ms Karan said Limited Edition Dance incorporated social development and self-esteem activities into its dance classes.
“We choose to focus on building the self esteem and the confidence of our students through dance,” she said.
“We don't particularly focus on competitions or eisteddfods or advanced levels, and instead we use dance as a platform to enjoy moving, developing co-ordination and feeling good about our bodies and what they can do.”
Ms Karan said starting a business as a teenager had offered unexpected challenges.
“The challenge of age has been huge,” she said.
“I didn't expect it so much especially just in the dance industry, but just being able to assert yourself while being so young has been a huge challenge but I've learned a lot from it.”
Ms Karan said 2019 was set to be a much more streamlined year for her business.
“The team's growing, we're hiring more teachers and putting on more classes,” she said.
“The first year was just a lot of trial and error and throwing everything at the business and seeing what sticks.
“We've given it a go last year and now it's really taking shape as a business this year.”
On January 24, Ms Karan received the 2019 Local Business Network Redland City Young Entrepreneur of the Year award.
Geoff and Cathy Young, directors of the Local Business Network in Redland City, said Soma was chosen for the award as she was always open to learning from more experienced business owners and was making a positive impact for Redland’s young dancers.
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