05.02.2018

Learner Spotlight: The Dynamic Duo

LS Feature

The de Vera sisters have been with iLEAD Exploration since it first started. Milena is a sophomore in high school and her sister Miya is in seventh grade. This dynamic duo has shared many successes together and independently. The girls were part of a hand chimes choir for over five years. This past fall, they performed on the main stage at Disneyland with over 100 participants. Milena was also able to sing during their Disneyland appearance. They have also performed in the Distinctly Teen Handbell Musicians of America and met a famous Japanese choir, MB Club, who wanted to take pictures with them. The girls performed at the Prince of Peace Pageant and were featured in the magazine, The Chorister’s Guild. Since fall they have resigned from the choir to start their own eclectic music band, MX4.


In their own unique ways, the girls are creative and business-minded. Milena is taking a full course load and over the last year and a half, she successfully began her own business. She makes delicious gluten free and dairy free mini donuts. Her decision to start this business was inspired by her sister who has Celiac’s disease. She wanted to make sure her sister could eat sweets like everyone else. Milena obtained her business license and food handler’s permit. She also created a website https://www.hoopsbynana.com for her business. The doughnuts are delicious! She is looking forward to getting her product to nearby farmer’s markets within the next six months. Just recently, Milena earned one of 20 spots available to showcase and sell her product at the Acton Children’s Business Fair which is sponsored by Acton School of Business in Orange. Milena will be there with her delicious doughnuts on Saturday, May 19, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. at 337 E Grove Ave, Orange, CA 92865.

Miya is an artist. She helped design the stop motion video on her sister’s website and she also creates logos for websites. Miya entered two art contests this year: Doodle 4 Google and the 8th Annual Space Foundation. Along with being a talented artist, Miya is a creative writer and writes original short stories. She is also becoming multilingual with foundations in both Russian and Japanese. Miya is planning to open up an art/card business on Etsy.

These girls are both inventive, creative and excited for their future endeavors. Keep an eye out for their up and coming businesses.

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