Jennifer Jamison is Chief Financial Officer and Board Secretary/Treasurer for the Ankeny Community School District in Ankeny, Iowa. She previously worked as the district’s Director of Business Services. Her school finance experience includes working at two smaller Iowa districts serving as a School Business Official and as a Staff Accountant at Des Moines Public Schools. She began her career at the Polk-Des Moines Taxpayers Association. Jennifer holds a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from Central Missouri State University, where she graduated cum laude. She also earned an Accounting Certificate from Simpson College and is a graduate of the Iowa School Business Management Academy. She is currently attending the University of Iowa’s MBA program, where she is pursuing certificates in Business Analytics and Leadership.
Q & A with Jennifer
Where and what are you currently studying, and why did you choose this?
I am currently studying at the University of Iowa in their professional MBA program. Seeking an advanced degree has been a goal of mine since I was an undergrad. Once my older children had finished their college educations, I decided the timing was right to further my education. I had a desire to gain valuable leadership skills as well as to improve my ability to analyze and interpret financial data and make it understandable for various stakeholders. I chose the University of Iowa’s professional MBA program because they have both virtual and in-person classes that can be scheduled around my busy work schedule which requires frequent evening meetings.
What government are you working in or hope to work at in the future?
I am currently working for the Ankeny Community School District, a PK-12 grade public school district serving approximately 12,500 students across seventeen buildings. The district employs over 2,000 full and part-time employees and is the largest employer in the city. The City of Ankeny is a rapidly growing community in central Iowa, just north of Des Moines and south of Ames.
What are your future career goals?
I would be happy to finish my career for Ankeny Community School District in my current position. If making a change in careers, I would love to find a position that would allow me to use the skills I am gaining through the Business Analytics program, perhaps as a consultant.
How will GFOA’s scholarship help you achieve those goals?
I am undecided yet whether I will pursue a dual degree program to also earn a Master of Science in Business Analytics in addition to the MBA. This generous scholarship award will afford me that opportunity to continue this additional degree which is only five more courses beyond those required for the MBA, or will be used to finance my final two semesters of the MBA program.