With flexible schedules, distance learning academies like Alpha Omega Academy allow students to pursue ambitious dreams as they obtain an education. This summer, junior Jessye Trefny is making progress toward her dream as she studies ballet at Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet in New York City.
Preparation for this exciting adventure began nearly two years ago at the same time Trefny enrolled at Alpha Omega Academy.
In order to attend the dance studio of her choice, Trefny must travel three hours per day. The lengthy commute makes it difficult to attend public school and make the daily trip to dance class. After discovering AOA through a friend, Trefny and her family sought more information and decided the academy would be a nice fit.
"I had been in public school for eight years, and many people in my family are public school teachers including my mom," Trefny said. "So, it was definitely a switch!"
Despite the uncertainty that comes with enrolling at a new school, Trefny said switching to AOA was a good choice. "School with the AOA and dance are both teaching me great responsibility, and that hard work does indeed pay off."
Though she sees friends from her previous school less often, she gets the best of all worlds as she completes her coursework on the way to and from dance class, studies ballet with new friends at her dance studio, and visits with old friends at her church youth group.
The flexibility that AOA offers also allows Trefny to audition for summer programs. Currently, she is attending a summer intensive ballet program at Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet in New York City.
"This is a dream come true for me because in the ballet world Ms. Kirkland is quite famous!" Trefny said. "In addition to rigorous daily dancing, they have some fun and educational evening group activities planned for us."
Throughout the course of the three week program, the dancers reside in college dorm rooms in Manhattan and take the subway to the studio each day. Though she didn't know any other dancers when the program began, Trefny expressed her excitement about meeting new friends.
"It will be an exciting time of dance, but meeting new friends who enjoy dance as much as I do will be awesome," she said.
As Trefny conquers her dream of studying in a prestigious summer ballet program, she continues to sets goals for the future.
"There are times when you can be offered to study year round with places like Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet," she said. "My dream is to attain a level of dance where this is possible. If I am ever lucky enough for this to happen, AOA will be a perfect way to continue my education while dancing away from home."
As she waits to see what her dance career holds, Trefny said she is grateful for the support she has received along the way. "Without the support and flexibility of AOA none of this would be possible. I know that the sacrifices my family has made are a huge part of why I am being allowed this tremendous time in my life. Most of all, the blessings and grace of my Savior Jesus Christ are at the top of my list of gratitude."