Name: Jessica Lillie

Hometown: Fox Lake, Ill.

Title: Content specialist

Business: U.S. Department of Homeland Security

She lives and works in one of the most beautiful cities in the United States, but Jessica’s love for her alma mater runs deep. So deep, she says, she’d leave Monterey, Calif., and return to Sheboygan, Wis., in a heartbeat.

“My dream job is to work for Lakeland,” says the 2010 graduate. “I feel it’s unfair that Lakeland did so much for me, and I haven’t given back. It’s hard to describe the greatness of Lakeland, unless you’ve been there. It’s not a school, it’s a community. It’s like living in a house, with your family.”

As a content specialist, Jessica collects all sorts of documentation and information and puts it into the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s digital library. This information can vary widely, from congressional research reports or hearings transcripts to World Health Organization reports on evacuation plans and bovine diseases.

Prior to this job, Jessica completed a term of service working with fourth-graders as a literacy tutor for AmeriCorps, a U.S. government community service organization.

Jessica fueled her creative nature in multiple ways while at Lakeland. She served as editor of the Lakeland Mirror newspaper, and won a Society of Professional Journalists regional award for a political cartoon drawing. She was an assistant editor for Seems, an international literary magazine published at Lakeland, and her budding musical career blossomed at Lakeland.

“When I was at Lakeland, if I could get involved, if I could jump into something creative, I was doing it,” Jessica says.

Jessica loved Lakeland from the moment she stepped foot on campus, for her initial tour.

“It’s just such a welcoming place,” she says. “Lakeland was hugely influential in my life. The professors were top-notch, always so helpful. Everyone there is always so willing to help you succeed.”