Jess Hughes

"Serving with NHC is my second term of service with AmeriCorps. I was a proud member of FEMA Corps, Class 23A during the 2016/2017 service year. While completing my first service year, I discovered my passion for public health."

Hometown:
Waukesha, WI

Educational Background:
B.B.A. in International Business from the University of Wisconsin- Whitewater

Host Site:
Fairmount Primary Care Center

Why did you join NHC?
Serving with NHC is my second term of service with AmeriCorps. I was a proud member of FEMA Corps, Class 23A during the 2016/2017 service year. While completing my first service year, I discovered my passion for public health.  I knew that I would want to serve one more year before entering into my Master's program, and I felt that National Health Corps was the perfect fit for me.

What are your plans after AmeriCorps service?
I plan to attend a university to complete my Master's in Global Health with a concentration in women-in-crisis and life-altering diseases. I hope to join Peace Corps during or after completing my masters, as well. My overall, 20+ years' life plan, is to eventually open a clinic in a developing country that services women-in-crisis.

Tell us about an employment, service, or research experience that was important to you.
As a FEMA Corps member, I saw many things that one normally does not have the opportunity to witness. I saw men, women, and children, homeless, with no means to support themselves. Their homes had been ripped away by yet another flood in a part of the country that seems to be devistated every year by natural disasters. I saw people sifting through what would have appeared to be garbage on the side of road, but was actually belongings from their homes. But what I also saw, were these same men and women who had absolutely nothing, helping their neighbors. They would say to us "Don't help me, go help them". These acts of selflessness and distaste for materilistic belongings only solidified what I had set out to do. I wasn't in this to make money. I was in this to make a difference.  My experience in FEMA Corps has left a lasting impression on me and I hope working with NHC will do the same.

What first sparked your interest in community service?
My parents have instilled a strong value in me to give back to others. I was fairly involved in church-based community service as a teenager and into college. I took a hiatus from serving during my last couple years of college in order to determine what my actual values were. I lived abroad for about a year shortly after graduating and rediscovered what serving could mean to me. Shortly thereafter, I joined FEMA Corps, and the adventure will continue with NHC!

What about Philadelphia excites you the most?
Two words. Philly Cheesesteaks. SO EXCITED!

What’s your favorite food?
Pizza. Any kind really. As long as it's greasy.