1. Where are you from? Are you a student? What are you studying?
I was born in Fairbanks, but my step dad was in the Army, so I've lived in Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Washington, and Texas before moving back up here. I've been in Eagle River for the past 10 years.
I'm going to UAA for nursing, I've had my pre-requisites done for a few years, and have been working and occasionally taking fun classes, like Dena'ina, Astronomy, and American Sign Language, while I wait to get into the program. This October I received a call about a spot that opened up and I accepted it, so I've been pretty busy getting pumped full of vaccines and having tests run so I can be ready for class and clinicals this Spring semester.
2. What interested you in coming to work for NMS at UAA?
I've always been interested in working close to where I'm taking classes, but I used to have a lot of anxiety about applying for jobs, and just lots of anxiety in general, so I worked other places until I sort of felt like I had that under control. I got a lot of valuable experience working in several different sorts of places that I felt confident I could be a barista on campus.
Of course, that's the job I originally applied for, but the one I got was cashier at the Bear Necessities, which was actually a fortunate change of events. I met and made so many cool friends who were coworkers or just lived at the dorms, and working with Jamie was more fun than I could have imagined, that I didn't mind that I didn't get the job I was hired for.
3. What do you like best about your job?
Almost all of it is the best! My coworkers are amazingly cool people, and even though I don't get to see them for very much of the day, they're interesting and fun to chat with when I can.
I run Borealis pretty independently, which makes me feel kind of like my own little boss. It's a really unique place to work and I've become really attached to it, haha. There's walls of white boards for art and studying, a piano for students to play on (which they frequently do), and big windows that let in a lot of natural light. It's a warm and inviting building, despite it's size and layout.
I'm super appreciative of the way things worked out, and it's awesome to have a Monday-Thursday 7am-3pm job that I wake up at 5am for, and I'm just excited about it. There isn't ever a day I don't want to come into work or want to leave early, even if it's a less than great day, it's still a better day than I would have otherwise working anywhere else on campus.
4. Tell us about your guests at Borealis Brew.
Most of my customers are regulars who are so sweet and cool to talk to. Some of them are even friends I made at Bear Necessities or professors I've taken classes from.
I ask how their morning is, how their classes are going, how their weekends were. And sometimes, I don't even have to prompt them, they'll tell me all about their presentation later, their exam they studied all night for, or how they had a really fun weekend but didn't sleep or do homework and they're paying for it big time. There are happier stories and experiences too, of course, but a college campus is rife with papers, projects, and exams that students need to vent about. And having gone through a few years of full time school myself, I so understand how it goes and cheer them on the best I can while I make their coffee.
5. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
That's a tough question. I couldn't have answered that 5 years ago, 10 years ago, and so on. I'm very much a positive and optimistic person, and I like to believe things will work out okay, but with the current political, social, and economic climate in the U.S., it's getting harder and harder to imagine that happening. If the world isn't a better place in 5 years, then I can't be either, despite my efforts.
To answer the question, I want to be graduated and living a quiet, humble life in a small home here in Alaska with friends and a cat, working a job I enjoy as much as this one while also having time for my hobbies. I'd like my friends also to be doing well and living their best life, and I hope to be able to help them achieve their success in any way that I can.