Today we’d like to introduce you to Jere’ James.
Hi Jere’, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I started dancing when I was four years old at Palm Beach Ballet Center in Palm Beach, FL, under the direction of Joan Miller. Thirty-five years later, I still love my craft. I dance with that studio until I graduate high school. I was blessed to have an opportunity to go to A.W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts in West Palm Beach, FL as a dance major. So I danced during school and after school. During my summers in High School, I would spend my entire summer going to New York City to train with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s summer intensive. My senior year, they asked me to stay and continue training during the year. I decided to continue my collegiate journey at attending the University of Central Florida and obtained a BS in International Business. After I was done, I gave my degree to my parents and went back to my first love, DANCE.
Over the next 15 years, I would perfect my craft in a different way. I started teaching at a phenomenal dance school, Orlando School of Cultural Dance, under the director of one of my dance mother’s Julie Coleman. I would teach at over 15 dance schools through Central Florida, finally making my way to Director of Dance at the Center For Contemporary Dance. It was there that I became the teacher and director I am today. Six years ago, I felt it was time to branch out again but this time as the Big Boss. In 2016 I opened my very own studio, Inez Patricia School of Dance, named after my deceased mother, who I wanted to pay homage to her for all of her sacrifice and investment into my passion. Fast forward six years later, we are a household name teaching over 500 students in the past six years and watching them graduate and go on to Professional Dance Companies and Collegiate Dance Programs. I’m one blessed dance teacher
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Absolutely NOT. My first nine months opening my studio, I had no students because we had to do an extensive build-out and was still responsible for all overhead. We lose students and gain them back. It’s definitely not for the weak. And with COVID, we had to change our platform to all virtual and then transition back to the studio to put in our annual dance concert in four weeks. Talk about Hard work… but we did it.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I absolutely love my students and teaching dance. It is my purpose on this earth. I’m able to teach beautiful babies that look exactly like me the love and passion for dance. We are a training facility that prepares young dancers for a professional or collegiate journey in dance. If they don’t continue dancing, they have obtained tangible life skills to prepare them for their journey.
Networking and finding a mentor can have such a positive impact on one’s life and career. Any advice?
Surrounding yourself around like-minded individuals who are all in the same page as you or who have achieved what your goals are in life.
- Email: Jere@inezpatriciadance.com
- Website: www.inezpatriciadance.com
- Instagram: Inezpatriciadance
- Facebook: Inezpatriciaschoolofdance
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