Director, Relationships and Reciprocity
Jessica Smyser works closely with staff and faculty to envision, plan, and implement the Academy’s marketing, development and communications strategies across all program areas. Jessica’s experience spans marketing and communications, events planning, and program management in both the music industry and in higher education.
Prior to joining the Academy in 2012, she served as communications and events manager at World Learning, a nonprofit organization dedicated to international education, exchange, and development, and later, as the program manager at Central New Mexico Community College. In both positions, she engaged young people around the country in deep discussion about their motivation for learning and their thoughts on being successful students and humans. Often, these young people shared dreams of studying and working in open, creative environments. Jessica is grateful to be at the Academy, an environment that embodies those young people’s dreams.
Jessica graduated from Smith College with a BA in American Studies, and has a Master's Degree in Ethical Leadership from Claremont Lincoln University. She has also studied screenwriting in South Africa; post-colonial theory at Trinity College, Oxford; and fiction writing and poetry at Harvard Extension School.