Supply Team Member, Paper Converting Machine Company
Jennifer Ross is an Automated Logistics Specialist with the Army National Guard that was deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2009.
“This field plays a very important role in accomplishing our missions,” she says. “I knew I wanted to do that in civilian life.”
Upon her return to Wisconsin she faced many of the same challenges other veterans face including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
The mother of three enrolled in the Supply Chain Management degree program at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC). Although it was hard to sit in a classroom for long periods, she persevered and NWTC staff supported and helped her along.
She enjoyed the interactive style of the program and learning from her fellow students.
Angela Hansen, one of her instructors, offered to mentor Jennifer and confided that her father also suffers from PTSD. She knew what Jennifer was going through and wanted to help. Jennifer also relied on other instructors, the veterans certifying official and members of the Student Veterans Association at the college.
She was a team member on several prominent NWTC service-learning projects that combined community-service and hands-on supply chain management experience. “Chemo Ducks” provided stuffed animals and support to children with cancer, while “Patriot Smiles” unfolded over the fall 2013 semester with a series of projects to help active-duty service members, veterans and their families.
Jennifer completed her degree in one year, got a job as a supply team member for Paper Converting Machine Company and still serves in the Army National Guard.
“My college experience helped me understand civilian life and employment,” she says. “It wasn’t just me, I had a whole team helping me succeed.”
Jennifer is taking a break from classes right now. However, she plans to return for Lean management certification and eventually wants to earn a bachelor’s degree.