Ari Vazquez, Assistant Coach
Ari first discovered her love of dance when she began training at Larkin Dance Studio at the age of three. She trained for 16 years in jazz, ballet, hip hop, pointe, musical theatre, contemporary and tap competing at both the regional and national levels.
She attended the University of St. Thomas and was a 4-year member of the University of St. Thomas Dance Team. With the team, she competed both jazz and hip hop at the UDA Collegiate National Championships and went on to win 5 Collegiate National Championships, 2 in jazz and 3 in the hip hop category.
Ari spent a year after graduation teaching recreational dance classes at Jam Hops Dance Connection before joining the Eden Prairie Dance Team coaching staff.
Dancing is truly her passion and she loves to share that passion with one and all!
Jessica Howells, Head Coach
Jessica has over 20 years of dance experience. She started her dance training as a studio dancer. Jessica is an alumni of Eden Prairie High School and EPDT. While she was a member of EPDT she was fortunate enough to win a State title, served as captain her junior and senior year. Jessica continued her dance career in college at the University of St. Thomas where she was a member for 4 years. During her time on the team they won two National Championship titles and she served as captain of the team.
Jessica began her coaching career at EPHS with the EPDT fall season team (EPPT). She coached for 5 years, as an assistant coach for 2 years and head coach for 3 years. In 2015 Jessica made the transition to the EPDT winter season and is now heading into her fifth season as the EPDT Head Coach. In 2015 Jessica received Rookie Head Coach of the Year.
She is very involved in the dance industry as she judges and works with many dancers and teams in the Midwest. Outside of coaching Jessica work’s full-time for Varsity Spirit Fashion as a design/sales rep. In Jessica’s spare time she loves to spend time with her husband Brett, their dog Fletcher and their friends and family.
COACH ARI VAZQUEZ
COACH CAITLIN O'LEARY
COACH OLIVIA ERICKSON
The Eden Prairie High School Dance Team (EPDT) is a program that supports a Varsity, JV and B Squad Dance Team at Eden Prairie High School ( EPHS) in Minnesota. The program is under the leadership of Head Coach Jessica Howells and assistant Coaches Olivia Erickson, Jordan Moreno, Ari Vasquez and Caitlin O'leary.
The EPDT represents EPHS and competes under the Minnesota State High School League within the Lake Conference, Section 2AAA and State Tournament. EPDT competes within the Class AAA jazz and high kick divisions.
The team has won 6 State titles along with numerous State Tournament Appearances, Section Titles, Lake Conference Championships and Invitational Awards. The team performs at Varsity basketball games and school pepfests. Weekly training includes ballet, yoga and strength training.
COACH JESSICA HOWELLS
COACH JORDAN ERICKSON
Jordan Erickson, Assistant Coach
Jordan began dancing at the age of 3 at Woodbury Dance Center. She was a competition dancer and a member of the Woodbury High School performance dance team all 3 years and was captain her senior year.
Her love of dance continued at Minnesota State University of Mankato, where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. She is trained in modern, contemporary, ballet, jazz, lyrical, tap, and musical theatre.
Outside of coaching, Jordan is the lead instructor at Pure Barre Eden Prairie. She is enjoying married life with her new husband, cat Joey and dog Dora.
This will be Jordan's 5th year coaching and she is absolutely loving it! She can't imagine coaching for another team.
Caitlin O'leary, Assistant Coach
Caitlin began dancing at the age of 3 at Dance Arts Centre. She is an alumni of Eden Prairie High School and EPDT. Caitlin continued her dance career in college at the University of Denver where she was a 4 year member and 3 year captain.
After college Caitlin began her coaching career with Shakopee fall dance team and found that coaching is something she is very passionate about. She also found a passion for yoga and is currently a certified Yoga Sculpt instructor with Corepower Yoga. Outside of dance and yoga Caitlin is a manufacturing engineer for MTS Systems in Eden Prairie.
This is her 2nd year coaching and she is looking forward to more adventures and growth in the upcoming years
Olivia Erickson, Assistant Coach
Olivia began dancing at age 3 and competed in studio dance until high school. Olivia was a member of the Eastview Lightning Dance Team during all four years of high school. She was crowned the MN state kick champions twice, as well as placed 3rd in jazz at the state tournament.
Olivia attended college at the University of North Dakota. She danced on the UND dance team for one year, and was actively involved in her sorority Delta Gamma.
Outside of dance, Olivia is a mental health therapist in a middle school in Mendota Heights, and loves spending time with her family and friends. Olivia started coaching EPDT in 2015 and loves getting the dancers pumped up before performances! Go Eagles!
EDEN PRAIRIE HIGH SCHOOL, EDEN PRAIRIE MINNESOTA
EDEN PRARIE DANCE TEAM