Allie: What brought you to DC?
Jessica: I’m pretty extroverted, so I wanted to live in a big city where there are lots of people and things happening. I’m also from Atlanta and am a southern girl at heart, so I didn’t want to go too far north. I decided to apply to jobs in DC, and got a great offer as a clinical, pediatric oncology research nurse at NIH. It worked out well!
Allie: What are the biggest differences between DC and Atlanta?
Jessica: Weather! It gets cold here (maybe not this week…). There is also a lot more going on in DC. In Atlanta, I lived in a nice, quiet, suburb which I loved. But here, it’s very happening, and political, and people all seem so smart and passionate.
Allie: What led you to a career in nursing?
Jessica: Science has always been a big topic of interest for me. I am fascinated by the science of healing, and love how nurses look at patients holistically. Seeing patients from a biological, sociological, and psychological perspective can give us a lot of insight.
In the future, I’d like to go back to school to become a nurse practitioner so I can be involved in making the big decisions.
Allie: Describe your dream DC day.
Jessica: I’m an outdoorsy person, so my day would start with a morning hike. Then, I’d get lunch somewhere outside – maybe go to a brewery. After that, I would go kayaking or paddle-boarding. I’ve never lived near a body of water, so that is still new and exciting for me. I have a kayaking season pass for the summer at the Potomac. Then, I would go on a private tour of the White House and the monuments.
Allie: What is at the top of your bucket list?
Jessica: Skydiving, but in a different country. I’d also love to go to Iceland, I’ve heard it’s the type of country you can just camp the entire time, and that the food and sights are amazing.
Allie: What are your go-to ways to relax?
Jessica: Boating and reading. I read a lot. I’m about to finish Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. I’m also interested in Holocaust books. Two of my favorites are Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl and The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult.
Allie: What is your favorite Jewish holiday?
Jessica: Passover, because my family always gets together as a big group. I love long meals and being around people. And I also love matzah, especially matzah pizza! And I enjoy anticipating that the holiday is coming with all of the cleaning and the preparation.
Allie: Is there something that people would be surprised to know about you?
Jessica: Yes! Even though I’m super short, I play volleyball. I played competitively in high school and intramural in college. My position is setter. I can’t join a DC league because of my schedule, but I would love to get a pick-up game started.
Allie: Complete the sentence: when Jews of DC gather…
Jessica: …They have a good time.
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