Saturday, July 25, 2009

Hello from Jessica

I have lived in Alaska for most of my life. My dad was in the Army and was stationed at Fort Wainwright and later at Fort Greely. We also spent a short time in Massachusetts. But, most of my childhood memories involve living and going to school in the Fort Greely/Delta Junction area.

In 1999, I graduated from high school and moved to Seattle, Washington to attend college at the Art Institute of Seattle. I graduated in 2001 with an associate of applied arts degree in video production.

In Seattle, I worked for a variety of productions companies. Most of my jobs were as a camera operator but I also worked as an assistant editor, engineer, Chyron operator, AV technician, and technical director.

In November of 2003, I moved back to Alaska to work for ECIII, a contractor for Cold Regions Test Center at Fort Greely as a videographer. My primary duty was to document the testing of military and civilian equipment.

While working for ECIII, I started to pursue my bachelor’s degree at UAF. Since I was working full-time, most of my studies were via correspondence. I did find time to take basic photography and radio production at the University. It was a grueling drive. I think I averaged 12 hours of driving a week, just for school.

In 2008, I went to North Carolina and started working part-time for Research, Analysis and Maintenance as a photographer. Although hired as photographer, my duties also included some videography.

Yearning for sub-zero temperatures, well, maybe more to get closer to finishing my degree, I came back to Alaska for the spring 2009 semester at UAF.

In February, I began working for The Sun Star, UAF’s student paper, as a reporter and photographer. Working as a reporter for The Sun Star happened, as I see it, the sheer cunning of the editor at the time, Kortnie Westfall. I had attended an assignment meeting hoping to pick up a photo assignment and got that, along with an article. I had no intention of writing and was convinced I really hated writing. As fate would have it, I really enjoyed writing and continued throughout the semester. In the fall, I plan to continue working for The Sun Star.

For the summer, I went back to North Carolina and resumed working part-time for RAM. Also, I’ve been taking summer classes through UAF’s Center for Distance Education.

There are a lot of reasons why I’m interested in going to Iraq. For one, I love traveling. I like expanding my worldview and learning about different cultures. Secondly, I have family, friends and co-workers who have gone to Iraq as members of the military or as contract workers. Another, I like little adventures...


  1. "In 1999, I graduated high school..."

    Exactly what did you do to the high school that graduated it? I think you mean "...I graduated from high school" -- although I realize a less-preferred use of the term is yours. :)

    Good luck with your adventure in Iraq, and be safe!

  2. I was pointed to your site by one of your proud, former teachers at Delta who I have worked with for many years. I thoroughly enjoyed watching your video report as well as reading your groups blog. Good luck with the rest of your time there and stay safe.

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