Falcon Spotlight: Kensington Wheeler

Wheeler has had a long road to success, but it has led to becoming a world-champion ballroom dancer
Falcon Spotlight: Kensington Wheeler

Senior Kensington Wheeler has been a Saint Stephen’s student for the past three years and she’s known for her academic involvement on campus.  She is the President of the National Honor Society, a leader of the Entrepreneurship Club, and a member of the Harvard Model Congress team, but what many don’t know is that Wheeler spends most of her time outside of school dancing.

She has competed at the same competitions as the girls from Abby Lee Miller’s dance and choreography company (the choreographer from Dance Moms) since she was very young, and as a dancer she has developed into a world-class competitor.  And she has world and national titles to show for it.

Wheeler started dancing when she was three years old and has been competing since she was eight, resulting in monthly travels.  

“For competitions I travel to mostly New York, Ohio, and California, but the furthest one was in Blackpool, England.” 

During her childhood, Wheeler danced styles like ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary. But she switched to ballroom three years ago, and her family moved to Florida for a special ballroom teen program.

Wheeler left her known life in Ohio to pursue her career in ballroom dancing, and her worries of transitioning into a new school, environment, and state were soothed through her new dance program. 

“The support I got made the move easier because this program teaches developing dancers how to dance together and support one another.”

Wheeler is not only supported by the other dancers, but feels a lot of support from her parents. She’s very grateful for everything her parents have sacrificed for her, and all the amazing opportunities that have come her way. 

Wheeler said, “They [her parents] were willing to move to another state to give me a better opportunity to dance.” 

Kensi’s mother noted her determination and hardworking nature, which has allowed Wheeler to blossom into a world champion.

“From a young age, Kensi has been hard working, motivated, and dedicated when it comes to dance, which makes it easier for us to make the decision to come to Florida.”

Another support system of Wheeler’s has been her coach, Volodymyr Barabash. He is originally from Kiev, Ukraine, and he and his partner Yulia Rudenco are current national dance champions who compete almost every weekend. 

“My instructor’s skills have helped me reach my biggest dance accomplishments,” Wheeler said. 

These accomplishments consist of two first place world titles and three national first place titles. The world titles were earned at the Ohio Star Ball, an event which represents “The crowning conclusion of the World Pro-Am DanceSport Series.” 

Wheeler hopes to continue dancing in and after college. 

“The route most dancers go is to become instructors in the future,” Wheeler said. However, she has other plans. 

Wheeler is planning on attending either the University of Miami or Florida State University, and majoring in entreprenurship with hopes to one day have a business of her own. 

“I want to keep work and dance separate and just dance for fun.”

Leave a Comment

Comments (0)

Comments are expected to be respectful and constructive. We do not permit the use of profanity, crude language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Commenters must provide their name; no anonymous comments will be accepted.
All the Gauntlet Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *