Jenn is prepping to be a Certified Public Accountant. She’s a former cheerleader for the Washington Redskins who holds degrees in mathematics and communications from Towson University. And now, she’s a Science Cheerleader.
SciCheer: What turned you on to math, Jenn?
Jenn: Ever since I can remember I’ve loved numbers. If you like puzzles, you’ll love math (especially algebra). An equation won’t work unless the pieces of the puzzle are put in the right places…and I love puzzles!
SciCheer: Favorite and/or least favorite courses you took to prepare for your math degree?
Jenn: I loved all my math classes but the one I surprisingly found interesting was the History of Math. I am not a history person at all but learning more about the history of numbers (how they were developed and used in their earliest forms) was very interesting to me.
SciCheer: Tell us about your experience as a Redskins cheerleader.
Jenn: I cheered for the Washington Redskins for two seasons. I was born and raised a Redskins fan so my family is about as die hard as they come. I’ll never forget the minute I was selected as one of 11 cheerleaders among 300+ trying out for the team! It was the culmination of years of dance school. School was always something that was a priority though, if I didn’t have good grades then I wouldn’t have been allowed to have the extra-curricular activities.
SciCheer: Can you describe a typical day at work now?
Jenn: II crunch numbers all day (and love it). nI supervise a staff and work closely with Presidents and CFOs of non profit agencies. On any given day I can be closing month end, running financials, preparing for an audit or prepping an annual budget or cash flow. There is never a dull moment let’s put it that way but I love every second of it!
SciCheer:Best part of your job?
Jenn: Not only do I love what I do but all my clients are non-profits who missions are helping people all over the world. I love giving back and volunteering so knowing that part of my job is helping to feed someone over in Africa or providing a safe environment for a young child in the Middle East in very rewarding.
SciCheer: Do you find that stereotypes about cheerleaders helped or hindered your studies or professional experiences?
Jenn:Definitely hindered, unfortunately, but once my clients or peers got to know me that barrier was removed. I do remember walking into one of my college math classes and getting the “what is she doing here?” look… and it was definitely satisfying to excel in that class.
SciCheer: Do you have any advice for youngsters who might feel torn between following one dream or another?
Jenn: I knew that if I didn’t excel in school then one dream, cheerleading/dancing, was not an option for me! If you want it all, you can have it all, but, like your parents have said, you have to work hard…study, get good grades, THEN have fun out on the field because you deserve it!
SciCheer:What are your plans for the future?
Jenn: To get my CPA and hopefully one day get married and have a family but for now I have my adorable Chihuahua, Hef, who makes me smile everyday. ☺
SciCheer: Best cheerleading experience?
Jenn: Definitely the USO tours. I went on two tours to entertain our troops and I haven’t had such an amazing, eye opening experience in all my life. Not only did I travel to eight countries but I also got to see first-hand what the amazing men and women in our troops do for our country…they are true heroes!
SciCheer: Best math-related experience?
Jenn: The confidence I have gained from the feedback of my clients. Knowing they see value in my work has really boosted my confidence and made me love what I do even more!
SciCheer: Why do you want to be a Science Cheerleader?
Jenn: I think it is very important to convey to young children that being a procheerleader is glamorous, but having an education is what is most important. Since I was teased growing up, it would mean the world to me if I can just reach out to one girl and help her in any way.