Tessa Horst grew up in Washington, D.C., where she graduated from Georgetown Day School in 1999 and Middlebury College in 2003. She received her MS degree in social work from Columbia University. Prior to entering graduate studies, Horst lived in Jackson Hole, Wyoming in 2004, where she was employed at the famous Silver Dollar Bar of The Wort Hotel.
At the time she competed on The Bachelor, she was employed as a social worker living in San Francisco.
One month after the finale, Horst and Baldwin called off the engagement.