Jen GillSeptember 19, 2017
IB HL English B
Theory of Knowledge
B.S. in Communications, Shepherd College
MSJ in Journalism, West Virginia University
Jen came to Verde Valley School in July of 2003 with her husband, Andy, and what fit in the trunk of their VW Jetta. They had just finished a year of world-wide travel in which they visited 25 countries on four continents, shamelessly devouring transformative experiences, and making countless lifelong friends. The thought of settling down was tough, but instantly VVS felt like home and a place to raise a family. Prior to joining VVS, Jen taught at an independent school in Connecticut, ran the office at a summer camp in Maine, promoted shows in DC, interned at a film museum in England, worked in the education department at National Geographic and snagged free concert tickets while a radio deejay in West Virginia.
With so much on offer at VVS, Jen hasn’t wanted to miss a thing. In her time here she has worked as a teacher, dorm parent, college counselor, communications director, admission director, and oversaw production of the newspaper, yearbook and literary journal. She is also very proud of her work as one of the architects of the Shixi program.
Every day Jen looks forward to the discussions that unfold in her classroom. She respects the level of thought her students show and the values they staunchly defend. And she often silently thanks Ham and Babs Warren for their vision and execution, both of which allow her to live in a place that she values deeply.
When not hanging out in Classroom 10 talking about how and why we tell stories, Jen can be found hiking trails down by the creek, sweating it out at hot yoga, writing, and spending time with her children, Juniper and Finley. After all these years, VVS still makes good on the promise of being a place where “how are you?” is genuine enquiry rather than just a salutation.