Tessa Renée Wilkinson is a multi-talented dancer with a love for all things fashion and beauty. She endures a busy schedule of dance classes, modeling, and acting, and still has time to be a normal 16-year-old at the Insight Academy of Arizona (ISAZ).
Tessa practices dance a total of 30 hours per week. For this reason, she is thankful for the freedom she has as an ISAZ student. She can perfect her passion while also learning her 12th grade material online.
“It is a lot of work, but I simply just do it!” she said.
Tessa’s mother, Renée Wilkinson, is also thankful her daughter has the opportunity to learn the quality material she needs as they travel to different performances and workshops around the U.S.
“Online school has allowed Tessa to train appropriately, accept jobs within the dance and entertainment industry, and indulge in her dance passion,” Renée said.
Tessa actually started school with K12, then tried out a brick and mortar school and quickly realized that online learning worked best with her busy lifestyle.
“We quickly refocused on what works, and that is ISAZ,” Renée said. “ISAZ has been the best way for her to conquer her busy training schedule and feed her entrepreneurial goals.”
“I appreciate that Tessa is in charge of her schedule and managing it,” she added. “It teaches such amazing discipline and real life discipline that is needed as an adult to truly succeed all around.”
As a parent, Renée has also enjoyed the experience of ISAZ so far. “ISAZ is amazing – it has an outstanding college prep curriculum and great teacher communication,” she said.
Tessa believes in hard work and effort to succeed. Through her commitment to perfecting her passion, she has been exposed to some life-changing opportunities.
“The experiences were very unique,” Tessa said. “They taught me a lot.”
Tessa competes in various dance competitions around the country in different dance styles, but she says contemporary is her favorite. “I feel most myself when doing it,” she said.
“Tessa Renée always loved to dance anywhere and everywhere as a child and took her first class at age 3 and was too happy,” Renée said.
Tessa is very proud of where currently stands in her dance career. “My favorite experience has truly just been seeing my growth from childhood,” she said.
Tessa and her mother are very close. “I am so very proud of Tessa and have always been her biggest fan!” Renée said.
They are so close that they are in the process of creating a new business where they will design dance bags together. “We created this company striving to share our knowledge and help fellow dancers,” Tessa said.
Tessa is constantly on the go, but she is able to stay positive and passionate about her craft. She has a close relationship with her fans on social media, giving them her own motivational advice and knowledge of dance to help them succeed. One recent motivational tweet read: “You need to overcome the tug of people against you as you reach for high goals.”
She also actively posts videos on her YouTube channel focusing on beauty, fashion, and of course, dance to inspire her fans.
“I hope they learn helpful things and find my videos fun!” Tessa said.
Tessa plans to graduate early from ISAZ this spring and hopes to attend a college in L.A.
Tessa and her mother, Renée Wilkinson