For many women, games of dress-up – slipping on fancy shoes and beautiful gowns to transform into something special – are treasured parts of childhood.
And, while such is the case for University of Houston-Victoria junior Jessica Innocenti, one difference remains.
She never grew out of it.
The 21-year-old, who works at Victoria’s All About the Dress, spends her days helping women look their best for weddings, proms and other big events.
“I like making people happy,” she said. “When I have brides come in, I’m making their dreams come true. I love that aspect of my job.”
Her work takes its share of skill. Innocenti said she not only has to be able to read people, but help them think outside the box.
“If a customer says she doesn’t want tulle and she hates poufy dresses, you can sometimes change her opinion,” she said. “If it’s the right dress, it clicks. It’s amazing to see people come in with one perspective but have that change once they see their options.”
Innocenti was born in Arizona, but she lived many places because her father was in the U.S. Army. She recalled years spent in California, Kansas and as far away as Germany.
The family later settled in Victoria, her parents’ hometown.
After her 2010 graduation from St. Joseph High School, she took courses at Victoria College and Texas State University in San Marcos before returning home to become a UHV Jaguar.
Today, the marketing major said her goal is to morph her retail experience and college course work into an opportunity for a full-fledged career.
“There are so many options out there,” she said. “I don’t know exactly what I want to do, but I want to stick with something along the lines of marketing. I’ve found something I really like.”
Innocenti admitted she keeps a busy schedule, but she enjoys it. When she does find free time, she fills it with visits to family and friends.
Another important pastime for her is hitting the dance floor.
“I’m a dancing guru,” she said as she laughed, noting she danced throughout high school and even into college. “If it’s anything dance related, I’m there.”
Looking forward, Innocenti is excited to continue down her path toward her eventual career. As for what comes next, she doesn’t really know.
Still, that’s OK.
“I just want to be happy in what I’m doing, and I want to make other people happy,” she said. “I want to be something great.”
I am a Jaguar is an online feature highlighting the exceptional students who attend the University of Houston-Victoria. To nominate a student, email Paula Cobler, UHV director of marketing and communications, or call her at 361-570-4350.