Born, raised, and located in the inner city of Chicago Karina Jocelyn Rivera also known as Killarina is a role model for her city and for multiple communities in and out of Chicago. Killarina’s current experiences within multiple Chicago communities such as Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Park Districts, The Happiness Club, and being an undergrad student at UIC has shaped her interpersonal and professional skills. Her experience as a former intern of the After School Matters High Def Dance program strengthened her discipline, technical training, and retention of choreography as a performer. Most importantly, it strengthened her problem-solving and collaboration skills as she worked closely with various dancers professionally and personally from all backgrounds and identities.
As her internship came to an end and she transitioned into the university lifestyle she wanted to step out of her comfort zone and learn more about her abilities and identity as a dancer. And so she began battling at the age of 19. She uses the power of her voice to address and speak with other dancers on topics such as street dance, battle culture, dance wellness, health, feedback and assessment, credibility, the art of battling, how to start your own dance event, and much more. Being a representation for all queer, multiracial females like her is what drives her passions and keeps her going today.
Today her main goal in her educational and professional endeavors is to obtain her Bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Learning. Within her personal endeavors, Killarina’s main goal is to utilize the power of storytelling, dialogue, reflection, research, and education to uplift and educate others specifically on street dance, battle culture, dance wellness, and health.
Have any questions for Killarina?
Reach out to her social media accounts. Instagram @_killarina_
“I am… I am a representation and influencer of EXCELLENCE. I am Puerto Rican EXCELLENCE. I am a queer woman of EXCELLENCE. I am a dancer, singer, artist, and athlete of EXCELLENCE I am a fighter of EXCELLENCE. I am a warrior of EXCELLENCE. I am a voice of EXCELLENCE I am an educator and forever a student, educating, and learning in EXCELLENCE. I am a sinner who works hard to find and restore my sense of inner and outer EXCELLENCE. I am EXCELLENCE, and will always be, no matter what life throws at me or whoever may feel and or think some type of way about me.” – Killarina