From working as a YouthForce intern and staff member, to sitting on the board, Jessica is a YouthForce alum in every sense of the word!
Jessica's history with YouthForce goes back more than ten years to her first day on the job as a Seahawks Intern, working as Fan Support Staff at CenturyLink Field. “I can still remember the energy of the game days – I'll remember it forever,” Jessica shares. “I was shy in high school. As a Seahawks Intern, I really learned how to come out of my shell.” Following her YouthForce internship, she was employed by the Seahawks “Hawk Squad”, and was later invited to join the YouthForce staff as a part-time Administrative Assistant.
“I can still remember the energy of the game days – I'll remember it forever.”
At the time, YouthForce was made up of a small team of four people with just about four company partners. Jessica was working for YouthForce when it merged with the Boys & Girls Clubs of King County (BGCKC) in 2007. This opened a door for Jessica when BGCKC invited her to apply for an accounting position at the downtown offices. “YouthForce and the BGCKC essentially set the foundation for my professional career. I had so many great mentors that were supportive of me every step of the way.”
“YouthForce and the BGCKC essentially set the foundation for my professional career. I had so many great mentors that were supportive of me every step of the way.”
Last year, Jessica joined Alaska Airlines as a Financial Planning Analyst after several years working for Boeing in their accounting department. When a mutual friend and fellow YouthForce board member heard of a position opening at Alaska Airlines, she came alongside Jessica and helped prep her for the interview. “At YouthForce and the Boys & Girls Clubs there is always someone you can meet or network with, someone that will connect you to your next opportunity.”
As a part of the Financial Planning & Analysis team at Alaska Airlines, Jessica and her co-workers are in charge of forecasting for the Marketing and Revenue Management Divisions. Jessica explains that this basically means they need to “know what's going on at all times in and outside of the company and report to management in order to stay on budget.”
Jessica always loved working with people and traveling, which is why she set her sights on a job with an airline. “I try to travel at least twice a month.” In fact, this year she'll be traveling to Italy for a ten day intensive study abroad program. “Alaska Airlines is really great about encouraging work-life balance. They support you doing what's important to you.”
“Be curious. Because you'll never know unless you ask a question.”
In true YouthForce fashion, we couldn't leave the conversation without asking for some advice for our young professionals over here at YouthForce. “My biggest pieces of advice are to learn something new everyday and be curious. Because you'll never know unless you ask a question.”