One of six dancers featured in the award-winning 2011 ballet documentary First Position, Miko Fogarty’s career as a star ballerina took off quickly. By the time she was 17, she had a contract with the Birmingham Royal Ballet in England where she stayed and performed for a year while also teaching and dancing in countries all over the world. Miko’s sudden success didn’t lead to the lifetime in the dance spotlight that the world might have expected, though. After her short term with the royal ballet, Miko took a dramatic change in direction.

She decided to study science. Miko earned Associate’s Degrees in chemistry and biology at Feather River College and Contra Costa College. Now an undergraduate student at UC Berkeley majoring in Integrative Biology, Miko dedicates the passion that she once brought to the stage to researching therapies for brain cancers at UCSF. Her academic awards are nearly as numerous as the ones she once collected for her talents as a dancer. Dance isn’t completely out of the picture, though. Miko works as the Conservatory Director of the non-profit art organization San Jose Dance International, teaching ballet.

Miko’s decision to switch her focus from her physical talents to her mental ones is dramatic, especially for someone that was in the spotlight with prestigious awards from ballet competitions all over the world and even more incredible performances in some of those same places.

Now, Miko is going to share her experiences surrounding her major career change at TEDxBerkeley’s upcoming Infle(X)ion event. The event “centers around the rapid changes that characterize the political, social, and technological realms of our contemporary society” (TEDxBerkeley) and the talks given during the event will discuss major points of personal as well as global change.

The event will take place at Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley, California on Saturday, March 9, 2019. If you can’t attend the event, you won’t miss out on everything the event, and Miko specifically, has to offer! The talks given will be available on YouTube after the event.

For more information about TEDxBerkeley and its 2019 speakers, visit