When Kayla Stewart's clogging teacher offered her the reins of his dance studio last year, the decision wasn't a difficult one. Although in her last semester of high school and mired in college and scholarship applications, Stewart, who had been taking clogging lessons at the studio since age 9, didn't hesitate to take him up on the offer.
Stewart now pays rent on the Powell, Wyoming, studio to its former owner and choreographs and teaches all six classes a week by herself. So far, she has modeled the studio very closely to how it was run by her predecessor, including putting on the traditional yearly performances, although this year she hopes to organize a few novel performances for her dancers. Sales last year reached $8,000, and she expects $12,000 in 2002.
So how has Stewart changed as a teen entrepreneur? "Running a business makes you more assertive because you have to deal with everyone," says Kayla, now 19 and in her first year at Northwest College in Powell. "You have to know what you want and not get pushed around." -Gisela M. Pedroza