Master of Environmental Studies

Student Profile

Jennifer Garlesky, Class of 2015, Water Resources Management and Policy

Image of MES student Jennifer GarleskyWhere are you from?
Fayetteville, West Virginia

What drew you to the MES degree at Evergreen?
I have always wanted to attend graduate school at a college in the Pacific Northwest. I remember learning about Evergreen when I was serving my first term in AmeriCorps with the Redwood Community Action Agency in Eureka, California. At the time, Evergreen was one of only a few educational institutions across the country that matched the education award AmeriCorps members received once completing a term of service. 

What do you hope to gain from the program?
A diverse education in the environmental field, which an emphasis on water resources management and policy. 

What was your previous education and work experience prior to entering MES?
I graduated from West Virginia University with a B.S. in News-Editorial Journalism. After graduating from college I served two terms with AmeriCorps. I have also worked as a professional journalist for daily and weekly newspapers in California, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and West Virginia. In my prior job before entering Evergreen, I was employed by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, working as a Public Information Specialist in the southern coalfields. 

What are your areas of interest in MES?
Water resource management, public policy and environmental education.

What activities do you enjoy outside of school and work?
I love hiking with my dog Gypsy Rose, mountain biking, kayaking. I enjoy just spending time outside whenever possible. 

What is your “dream occupation”? What do you see yourself doing after earning your MES degree?
I would like to return to the public sector and work as an environmental analysis for the division of water resources or working as an executive director for a watershed association. 

Who has been an inspirational individual in your life?
I would say that my West Virginia family has been a huge piece to this puzzle of me returning back to school and relocating to Washington State. There are so many people that have helped and inspired me to reach this goal. I often think of the phrase it takes a village to raise a child. My village is my friends and family living in Fayette County. 

And anything super interesting you think prospective and currents students should know about you!
I love to travel and spend time outdoors. Since I am new to the area I am always looking for people to explore these mountains with.