Get Schooled with Tessa

We love featuring trailblazing women on Love & Nudes - in fact - it is part of our Women First manifesto to support, encourage, and uphold amazing women. We are excited to feature Tessa Thomas a former NCAA student soft ball player and consultant. Check out her story below. 

 

Tell us a little about your business. What is it about?

Happy to! Recruit-HQ is a platform to help high school athletes better navigate the college athletic recruiting process by providing them with access to the experiences of college athletes who went through the recruiting process themselves and competed at the next level—unless you or your coach knows someone who went somewhere to play, it’s really hard to find out what it’s like to be a student-athlete in any sport at a specific school.

What is the change that you would like to bring to society?

I believe in the power of sports to provide so many opportunities for young people—confidence, perseverance, work ethic, dedication, the list of character building traits that can be applied to any endeavour go on, but the key is opportunity. I want to see more young athletes, especially young girls, pursuing opportunities to continue to compete in sports that they love.

What happened to make you want to do this? Tell us what drove you to start this.

I’m a former NCAA DI student-athlete (softball), so I went through the recruitment process myself in the mid 2000s. When I started helping to coach youth teams a couple of years ago I was surprised to hear the same questions being asked that my mom and I had years before, a decent amount of time had gone by, but it seemed not much had changed, resources hadn’t improved, recruiting consultants got more expensive and the whole process remains at best, confusing and complex, and at its worst, completely overwhelming for most families. I think that building a community and platform where athletes can support each other is very powerful and in the long run will help more young athletes find opportunities to continue competing at higher levels. Athletics gave me so many gifts and opportunities over the years, Recruit-HQ is my way of trying to help as many young athletes as I can find the opportunities best suited to them and unlock doors that they may have never thought were possible for them to walk through.

Has anything changed since you started?

For sure! A lot has changed since I started, the biggest thing being that our platform went live and is now available for young athletes and their parents to use. Our goal was to get at least 1,000 reviews from former university student-athletes submitted to the platform before going live and we reached that goal in June 2020. Seeing the overwhelmingly positive responses from former student-athletes when I ask them if they're willing to share their experiences and then reading the reviews and seeing the depth of responses and their willingness to try and help young athletes in any way that they can has definitely made me want to work even harder to make sure that young athletes and their parents have access to what we're building.

How do you think being a woman of colour has impacted your journey?

I think being a woman of colour means that I don't give up on things easily as there are often many obstacles in the way to success, I think the resilience muscle that I've developed over time as a woman of colour has served me well so far in my entrepreneurial journey.

Have you had a remarkable win that you would like to share with our readers? We all love hearing success stories! Tell us yours!

Our biggest win so far has been getting our first 1,000 reviews on the Recruit-HQ platform from former university student-athletes—seeing the number grow from 0 to 1,000 has already made 2020 a success, but I can't wait to see where we can go from here! I also had the honour of being inducted into the Winthrop University Athletics Hall of Fame earlier this year. I played NCAA Division I softball at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC for four years as a student-athlete.

Check out about what student sport life like at a particular school go to Recruit-HQ

We love featuring trail blazers and change makers. Know someone we should be connecting with? Hit the contact form and tell us! 

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