Monthly Archives: January 2010

Conception of Time (on the Block Plan)

It has been too long!

I apologize!

First, let’s talk winter break.  I went home to OklaHOMEa (like my play on words?) for all of winter break.  It was relaxing. I slept, worked at my old job that I had during high school, and visited as many friends as possible.

Unfortunately, I thought a month at home was way too long.  I felt like I was doing sooo little. Truthfully, I wasn’t doing very little. I was working 30 hours a week, went to doctors (wisdom teeth surgery, checked for skin cancer), ate TONS of frozen yogurt, had coffee with teachers from high school, watched a total of 11 movies, read 3 books, and bought new clothes!

This leads to my theory (not really my theory per se, probably some CC students feel the same) of time on the block plan.  Winter break roughly translates into one block at CC.  Right? In regards to the block, it’s fast-paced, I can barely catch my breath, I read more than 5 books for class, and I write more than 4,000 words. That’s only in 3.5 weeks.  Time flashes before my eyes, and before I know it—I’ve already moved on to my next class.   Thus, I hypothesize that CC exists on an alternate universe in which individuals can freely move to and from CC reality to the reality that most of the world experiences.

Signing off from the alternate universe,



So January is almost gone. Excuse me? Where did it go, I would like to know? So much to write about.. I finished up with National Geographic in late December.  It was a completely life-changing experience.  The job itself was great, good people, amazing bosses, yada yada, but I believe the real kicker was how much confidence I gained. In moving around the city, getting my work done, meeting people, hanging out, it all just gelled in the end. After finishing my internship, I took a 1 week, 40 hour bartending class- let me tell you- coolest thing ever. I don’t drink that often (I’m 21) but I sure can make a lot of money off other people’s vices. A bartender on a good night can make upwards of 700 dollars.  Sweet.

 After leaving New York, frantically packing all my boxes of books clothing and odds and ends, I jetted off to Scotland, where my family lives. Christmas was white! Yaya.  I got to see my two younger sisters and my mom, which was so nice. I got to be a kid again. ‘mama, will you make us cookies?’ Suffice to say it was awesome. But I was beginning to sorely miss Colorado. Sunshine, fresh air, and happy people. Scots are a dour lot, I think I saw one bright color (burgundy) in almost 2 weeks. Sheesh!

              Anyhow, the saga continues. After Scotland I booked it back to Seattle to pick up my car and drive the 24 hours to Colorado Springs, where I got my stuff from the storage unit and drove BACK up to Breckenridge, where I’m currently living. The next day I started work at the Todd Powell Gallery, in Frisco, CO. He’s a really neat guy who does large format photography. He owns a 40,000 dollar printer to print them on. Hmm, Land Cruiser, Canon printer, land cruiser, canon printer, which should I choose? He’s teaching me to use it, super complicated color profiles and all, which is really exiting. I’ve got 22 days of telemarking in, and it’s finally starting to dump in the mountains. Poowwddeeerrrrr! I’m at CC today to catch up with people, and practice frisbee with my team, Lysistrata’s Tools. We’re going to Las Vegas in 2 weeks for a tournement entitled, ‘Trouble In Vegas,’ hopefully we’ll have a blast. More to come in the very near future.


               Yours Truly,


                                 Claire Montana Jencks

The Wall

This half block, I took Globalization and Immigration on the US-Mexico Border. After a couple days of theory, we spent a week traveling around border towns all over Arizona and Sonora. Although I knew the course would cover a heavy subject matter, I was not prepared for what I witnessed. The Border region is an area where our Constitution is selectively applied as we create a new age of apartheid comprised of constant checkpoints, agents hassling those with darker skin to prove their identity and lawful residence, and extreme poverty bordering wealth and luxury. There is a 20-foot wall that divides communities and presents a host of environmental problems, such as massive flooding. Border Patrol cars line the border, and helicopters fly overhead. Surely this cannot be how things are in the United States of America…but this has become our reality.

The border is beginning to gain political visibility with the introduction of two immigration bills in Congress and two high-profile articles in the New York Times this month, which you can check out at:

War Without Borders: In Drug War, Tribe Feels Invaded by Both Sides (We met with Ofelia Rivas, quoted on page two.)

Officials Hid Truth of Immigrant Deaths in Jail

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A cross on the Wall in Agua Prieta to honor the migrants who have died in the desert while attempting to cross the the border.

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Each ribbon has the name of a migrant who has died.

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The trash-dam along the Wall in Nogales, causing major flooding in Mexico.

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An endless line of Border Patrol agents lining the border wall in Nogales.

Winter Break – A Taste of the “Real World”

This winter break was a bit different than the last three. Last year at this time, I was preparing to jet off to Beijing, China and explore parts of the world I never imagined experiencing. This break I faced the fact that I graduate from Colorado College in four months. My situation is a bit odd: because of AP classes and the rapid completion of my major, I am finished with classes at CC. I will spend the next month finishing my senior economics thesis. After that, I will occupy my time leading to graduation with work at the admissions office, KRCC – The SOCC, as well as helping plan our end of the year music and arts festival, Llamapalooza. (More blogs on all of that stuff in the future)

With all of this in mind, the last few months have been full of exploring what options are available for post-graduation. At the beginning of December I participated in a SLAC (Selective Liberal Arts Consortium) recruiting day in Chicago. At the recruiting day, I interviewed with an ad/marketing agency, DraftFCB, and an Americorps program with The Schuler Foundation. Both turned out to be quite fruitful. After the first interviews, I continued in the process with Schuler only to hear last week that I have been offered a position. Schuler sets up students like myself with scholar coach positions where we mentor high school students. The program focuses on bright students who might be first generation college students or otherwise might not have the means or background to know that they could attend a four-year university or college. The position is a one year commitment in the northern suburbs of Chicago.

DraftFCB conducted two interviews at the recruiting day and invited me back for a full day at the agency on January 12th. I spent the day at Draft’s enormous office in downtown Chicago interviewing with six different VP’s at the company. DraftFCB is a giant ad/marketing agency with clients such as S.C. Johnson, Kraft Foods, and MillerCoors. I am applying for  an entry level account management position where I would act as a point person/project person for a particular account. Essentially, I would be the communicator between clients, creatives, and others on the team. I had a blast at the company despite being absolutely exhausted from so many interviews. Draft seems like a great place to work – full of energy and creativity all while in a relaxed but professional environment. I felt positive coming out of the day – like I had impressed a few folks. Most of the students interviewing that day were from University of Chicago or Northwestern. One might think they’d have a leg up at a Chicago office, however, I found that the fact that I was a bit different offered me a chance to really impress people. Not to mention I was able to explain the block plan in almost every interview and subsequently relate it back to the project based work I would do in account management.

Interestingly, DraftFCB and Schuler are essentially polar opposites. Still, they both appeal to the communication, relationship building side of me. I am also exploring some options with other marketing firms in Chicago as well as a graduate program in Integrated Marketing and Communications at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism. The “real world” is quickly approaching, but it isn’t seeming so bad! The hard part now is deciding where I want to be. For now, I am waiting to hear back from DraftFCB until I make any further decisions. Below you’ll find links to DraftFCB and Schuler’s websites.


Schuler Family Foundation

Ringing in 2010

I’ve had a whirlwind month. Just when I thought I finally finished with my law school applications, several more top ten schools contacted me saying that they’d waive my application fee if I were to apply…Obviously, I had to apply, and I’ve had my hands full writing supplemental essays for each school. I still think that applying to college is much more daunting than applying to law school, however. For better or for worse, much more of the admission decision is based on your LSAT score and GPA.

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My brother and me at Christmas Brunch

This was my first Christmas without my father, so my family and I decided to start a couple of new traditions. The first was eating Christmas brunch together. The three of us dined at the St. Julien Hotel in downtown Boulder, a few short blocks from my brother’s apartment. To my delight, our table was right next to the dessert station! The other new thing we did was to drive up to Flagstaff Mountain and watch the sunrise over the city on New Year’s Day. After barely sleeping, it was almost impossible to motivate myself to bear the cold and snowy conditions, but it was totally worth it. After everything that’s happened over the past year, it was nice to reflect and set new goals surrounded by people who love me. It’s crazy to think how different my life will be in half a year. I’ll know what school I’ll be attending and where I’ll be living for the next three years. Right now, everything is unclear and undecided. It’s difficult to stay calm and be patient when it feels like I have no control over my life. But then I think back to this time last year and remember how things were even less clear and how much more stressed I was about graduation and law school. I had the LSAT looming over my head, wondering what my score would be and which schools I should research and apply to. I thought that I might want to take a year off in between college and law school, but I wasn’t sure. I eventually found my answers. That’s what I have to remember: be patient, and everything will turn out alright.

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The full moon at sunrise over the Continental Divide

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