University of Idaho senior embraces importance of community, works with Department of Student Involvement
As discovered by senior Jackie Davis, college is a time for students to seek and create strong communities, while constantly challenging themselves to grow in new ways.
Currently in the National Guard and one of the two leadership coordinators for the University of Idaho Department of Student Involvement (DSI), Davis has always had a passion for serving others and seeking new communities to be a part of. One of her biggest service opportunities was a 10-day Alternative Service Break trip to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania through U of I where she helped revitalize homes for those in need.
“My favorite part about everything I’m involved with is the people. The people are what make the difference — all of the connections and friendships that I make,” Davis said. “Volunteering gives me a sense of pride to give up my time to help others and has a lot of impact for the organizations being served.”
Davis decided to apply as a Leadership Coordinator for the Department of Student Involvement a year and a half ago to facilitate leadership trainings and network on campus. She attributes Career Services for helping her get the competitive job. Without the help of her career advisor Eric Anderson, she said her resume would not have been competitively tailored for this specific position and she would not have been as prepared for interview questions.
“I have applied for jobs before and have been accepted, but have never had a formal interview before,” Davis said. “I recommend everyone take advantage of and orient themselves with the entire Student Success Center on the third floor of the [Idaho Student Union Building]. It is better to know about the resources available on campus earlier rather than wishing you would’ve used them right before graduation.”
Her responsibilities consist of coordinating with clubs for renewal and trainings, and scheduling and facilitating leadership trainings for other groups and organizations on campus.
“One of my favorite leadership trainings I helped conduct was with the Women in Science Society,” Davis said. “I think everyone was receptive and able to get a lot out of it, especially with workshopping and helping women who are also officers in other clubs. One of my favorite things is the joy I get when someone has a lightbulb ah-ha moment and it is because of some way that I have impacted them – something I have taught them or shared with them in a way that has affected their life and changed the way they behave for the better.”
Through her job with DSI, Davis said her confidence has greatly improved in her workspace and in general. She said she has acquired practical customer service skills such as being able to answer the phone confidently and talk to people she may not know. In reference to her career development growth, she said she has reached a whole new level compared to if she didn’t get the job in the first place.
Her goals for the future are either medical school to become a physician or graduate school to become a dietitian, saying she loves both career options equally and will most likely utilize Career Services again to explore her options.
“The definition of success varies, but I am personally motivated by being a successful person. To me, a successful person is always willing to learn and grow,” Davis said. “A successful person does not reach a certain level of success and then stop trying at a certain point. There is always untapped potential.”
Lynsie Clott, U of I Student Engagement Coordinator, has gotten to know Davis well and will miss her when she graduates this semester. “Davis knows who she is as a person — she is comfortable and confident, but overly humble,” Clott said.
In addition, Clott said Davis is genuinely kind and a great listener, but has a funny, quirky, ridiculous side that brings a fun energy to the team. She is highly competent, passionate and intelligent. She loves the outdoors, rock climbing and running marathons — activities that keep her mindful of her overall health and well-being.
Davis has talent for being able to identify group needs, craft tailored programs for them and facilitate discussion for participants to reflect and come to their own conclusions, Clott said. She is insightful with people and has greatly helped with I Lead and Vandal Lead programs, Leadership on Demand trainings, Women’s Base Camp leadership programming and is currently working on an intercultural learning simulation titled Bafa Bafa. She can take initiative and ownership over projects because of her passion for the work she does, Clott said.
“Jackie is a naturally curious person and has excitement for constantly soaking in new experiences and taking advantage of everything she possibly can,” Clott said. “She is focused on self-discovery and a personal growth mindset that she uses to help others develop and grow for their own self-improvement.”