Name: Jessica Johnson
Hometown: Port Saint Lucie, Florida
Degree: B.S. in Psychology
Graduation: December 2016
For Jessica Johnson -- a Commissioned Officer in the U.S. Marine Corps, intelligence specialist, Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps member and psychology major who will graduate on Dec. 10 -- Armstrong was a natural fit.
“I chose to attend Armstrong for its reputation as a military-friendly school, as well as for the non-traditional environment,” explains Johnson. “I felt comforted in the fact that there are other veterans on campus I was able to connect with, as serving in the armed forces is unique.”
Johnson’s deployments took her to Thailand and Japan to train U.S. fighter pilots and Afghanistan to gather intelligence for Operation Enduring Freedom, where she briefed some of the highest-ranking members of the State Department.
A recognized and ambitious student, Johnson’s academic success in the field of psychology is inspired by her real, and oftentimes shocking, experiences in the military.
“While I was in Thailand, I volunteered in an orphanage that cared for young female victims of human trafficking,” she reveals. “This experience in itself was life-changing, and after working with these girls I decided to pursue a career in psychology.”
Following graduation, Johnson will continue in the Marine Corps, but plans to earn a doctorate degree in clinical psychology.
“My dream job is to work with veterans and their families,” explains Johnson, who conducted undergraduate research on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder at Armstrong with professor Ho Phi Huynh. “I feel like my military experience prepared me in many ways for success in the pursuit of my academic goals.”