Vanessa Hudgens was born on December 14th, 1988 in Salinas, California and is of Irish, Native American & Filipino descent to parents, Gregory Hudgens and Gina Guangco. She grew up in San Diego, California and lived in various locations across the west coast. Her father was a Firefighter with family coming from Missouri and Illinois while her mother, an office worker comes from the Philippines.
Vanessa was interested in acting and singing at a young age, inspired by her grandparents, who were musicians. At the age of 8, she started appearing in musical theater. She fell deeper in love with the arts and began studying acting, singing, and dance more seriously with Jailyn Osborne. Vanessa very briefly attended Orange County High School of the Arts. After years of auditioning, she began seeing some success. This prompted her family to move to Los Angeles, California. She started homeschooling, so she missed out on the high school experience, and she finally landed her breakthrough role in High School Musical (2006).