Meet the Intern: Jena Blanchard

Written by: Jena Blanchard, EDA Summer Intern

Hi! My name is Jena. I am the intern for the EDA this summer. I was born and raised in Snohomish, Washington. I graduated from high school in 2009 from Cedar Park Christian School in Bothell, Washington. Since high school I have been on pursuit of what I would like to do for a career. I grew up with a single mother as an only child, and we would constantly take trips together.

A large portion of my childhood was spent traveling. My mom and I were always taking trips to the beach, Disneyland, and several mission trips to Mexico. When I was ten years old we got the opportunity to visit The Philippines, Burma, and Singapore. We were staying with a friend who does mission work in those countries. I visited many orphanages and was fortunate to gain a different outlook on life from a young age.

After graduating high school, I decided I wanted to pursue travelling. I have been able to visit Canada, Mexico, Ireland, and in 2012 completed a Study Abroad to Australia and New Zealand. I decided I wanted to see more of Australia, and in 2015 was given the opportunity to intern for six months at a camp run by a friend of mine.

The camp is a non-profit called Attunga, an aboriginal term meaning “high place” because it sits above the valley and rivers. Two hours north of Sydney, in the Southern Highlands of Australia, was my home for a short amount of time. I got to work with people from all walks of life, from all around the world.

(Attunga, Southern Highlands, Australia. My backyard for six months.)


Upon returning to the states, I was not sure what direction to take. My mother is a CWU alumni and encouraged me to pursue finishing my education. I came out to visit Ellensburg, fell in love with the campus and town, and applied to start in winter of 2016. I will be graduating next spring with a degree in Sociology and a minor in Non-Profit Organization Management.

I am so excited to be interning with the EDA. Being from a small town, I fully appreciate community life and development and I’m excited to learn how a non-profit is run. I am looking forward to meeting new people around downtown and enjoying summer activities.