ST. PETERSBURG –Entering her senior year, Tierra White had finally come from under the dark cloud that had covered and haunted her for two and a half years.
During that summer, she found out that she passed the ACT. She was excited and ready for graduation at that point! Senioritis had already set in. Tierra believes that every senior gets the senioritis disease where their grades decrease and the grade point average does the same.
“I found myself picking up on it and had to get rid of it because it had gotten really bad,” said Tierra. “I didn’t play any sports this year, I just focused on academics and having a fun.”
Entering high school, Tierra was expecting it to be like Disney’s “High School Musical” or Nickelodeon’s “Zoey 101,” but she soon realized life was not a television show.
She had heard that it would be extremely hard after middle school, but it wasn’t as difficult as she had expected. She was more prepared than she thought she would be.
As a freshman, she was very active playing flag football and cheerleading. She also participated in Students Against Destructive Decisions and student government where she helped plan the school prom, participated in other in-school and out-of- school dance activities that kept her busy.
Being in the dance program at Gibbs High School required you to participate in the fall dance concert, spring dance concert, stay on track with all courses throughout the program and maintain a 2.0 grade point average.
Every term, there were auditions for each concert, and when the list went up you either saw students upset or really excited. She managed to be in the shows that she wanted to be in and a few others. This meant staying after school for long hours to rehearse for the fall show in late November and the spring show in late March.
“I remember passing all of my exams and meeting all of my requirements for freshman year and wanted to move on to my sophomore year,” said Tierra. “This year was a little more difficult for me because I needed to pass that one requirement for graduation and I just couldn’t pass the FSA and they wouldn’t allow sophomores to take the ACT. So I struggled and worried while everyone else was passing except me.”
Although she passed all of her exams, at the time she wasn’t ready to move on because of the ACT. In her junior year, she rarely participated in the dance department, which hurt her physically and mentally. She thinks that she lost the courage and motivation to do what she really wanted to do.
With the great news that summer leading up to her senior year and graduation assured, Tierra decided to go out of state to Alabama State University to major in dance and minor in athletic training. In 10 years she plans to be in Los Angeles performing in a professional hip-hop dance company, dance movies and videos.
The sunshine has broken through the clouds that were hanging over Tierra. She is excited to learn more about dance and movement of the body in college. Her exit from the area may be the right move to take her to national prominence.