Jessica Carlson '09

Jessica Carlson '09

General Motors - Senior Buyer, Marketing

LinkedIn Profile

1. Tell us about your journey since graduation.
Graduating in 2009 was tough - I was lucky to land a purchasing role with Waste Management (and yes, I did get to ride on a truck for a day). From there, I moved to HP and started a course to get my master's in accounting. I then jumped to an advertising agency as an accountant, eventually moved to the production department, and then went client side at General Motors. I now purchase anything needed for experiential marketing, auto shows, and branded entertainment; I just added influencer marketing to my plate and it's been fun to learn more about.

2. Share a favorite Grand Valley memory.
My roommate was from Chicago and the Bears were in the Superbowl in 2007. We had a ton of snow and Monday had already been declared a snow day/all classes were canceled. The snow did not stop us from bundling up and heading out to some Superbowl watch parties along 48th Ave!

3. What's the best piece of advice you've ever received?
If you're going to put your name on something, make sure it's something you are proud of.

4. List three words you would use to describe your Grand Valley experience.
Community, Independence, Discovery

5. What difference would you like to make in the world?
While extremely supportive, my parents did not attend college; without a blueprint to follow, we found the process a bit overwhelming. My personal experience with navigating being a first-generation college student has made me passionate about mentoring high school students in similar situations. The experiences I had in college (combined with the strong foundation my parents gave me) have set me up for success in my career. While a four-year university might not be the right path for everyone, it definitely was for me. If I can help the college process be less overwhelming to someone else and help them find what path is right for them, I feel like I have made a difference.

February 2024

Interest Area(s)
Finance, Marketing, Supply Chain Management

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Page last modified February 1, 2024