This post is part of the Career Center’s bi-weekly roundup of alumni success stories. Check out Jennifer’s story below, and find more SuCCess Stories here!
A Conversation with Jennifer Cajina-Grigsby ‘14
Grad Year: 2014
Current Job Title, Organization: Program Manager for Bright by Three in Denver; Community Outreach Coordinator for Showtime Performing Arts Academy in Nicaragua; Master’s student of Communications, Media, and Creative Industries in Paris
Jennifer Cajina-Grigsby ‘14 is always in three places at once – or at least, that’s what it seems like. Though she is a Program Manager for Bright by Three in Denver, she is also a community outreach coordinator for a performing arts academy in Nicaragua, and currently lives in Paris while pursuing a Master’s degree in Communications, Media, and Creative Industries.
Perhaps better than anyone, Jennifer knows what it’s like to work remotely. She spends much of her day responding to emails and making phone calls from wherever she happens to be: a coffee shop in Denver, a library in France, or her home in Nicaragua.
While some people may like the stability of holding one job and living in one city, Jennifer seems to thrive on her ability to live, work, and play anywhere in the world. When she picked up her job in Nicaragua, working for Showtime Performing Arts Academy, she spent a year traveling across Nicaragua, Belize, and Costa Rica, all while squeezing in side jobs. Besides her full-time position, she helped independent entrepreneurs to run restaurants and worked with the Movimiento to defend their land and rights against the illegally-imposed Nicaragua Canal Law. She even found time to hike 10 of Nicaragua’s 19 active and extinct volcanoes.
How did Jennifer launch such a dynamic career? She graduated from CC in 2014 with a degree in Sociology. Following graduation, she moved to Denver to work for the New Era Colorado Foundation as a program coordinator. She now works as a Program Manager and Foreign Contractor for Bright by Three. Bright by Three is a Colorado-based non-profit that works to assist families in giving their children the best possible start by supporting their physical, emotional, and intellectual development during their first three years of life.
Jennifer’s current role at Bright by Three is to coordinate community and volunteer outreach and management. She enjoys establishing new relationships with possible partner organizations in order to touch more lives throughout the state of Colorado.
Jennifer has also been involved with their new platform Bright by Text. This is a text resource for which families can sign up to receive information about newborn, infant and toddler care; nutrition and health information; developmental games and milestones; and much more. The platform currently reaches 7,000 people throughout the state.
On the side, Jennifer still works informally as the community outreach coordinator for Showtime Performing Arts Academy in Nicaragua. She manages their social media and helps to get the word out about the academy.
As if these roles weren’t enough to keep her busy, Jennifer recently started a Master’s program at Sciences Po, more formally called the Paris Institute of Political Studies, where she is pursuing her studies of media and the creative industries. She is currently pursuing her degree while keeping up with her remote work in Colorado and Nicaragua.
More than anything, Jennifer is an example of the way CC can teach students to get a lot of work done in a short period of time – no matter where they are.
Jennifer’s advice to graduating students is to avoid thinking that the first job they get after graduation is going to define what they do. She says that students should know that if they don’t enjoy their first position, they can cross that job off their list and move in another direction. And – as Jennifer has shown – there’s a lot they can accomplish with just 24 hours in a day.
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