New Employee Spotlight – Jayme Kaniss

We’d like to take a moment and recognize our newest employees to Green River. Please take a moment to learn more about them, in their own words.Kaniss, Jayme

Please tell everyone your new title and a little bit about your professional background.

As the incoming Director of Workforce Education, this opportunity will bring me full circle in my career, and I couldn’t be happier! My first professional position was as an Assistant Professor at Catawba College, a small liberal arts college in North Carolina, and, during my time there, I also served as Director of Career Planning and Placement. With stops in between at the Office of Personnel Management in Atlanta, the Nonprofit Center and Read2Me in Tacoma, WorkSource offices in Lakewood, Auburn and Tacoma, and WorkForce Central, a part of the Workforce Development Council in Pierce County, I am now looking forward to returning to the academic arena.

What drew you to apply to Green River?

While I was at the Auburn WorkSource affiliate, I worked with numerous clients who were pursuing degrees or certifications from Green River, and all of them were very complementary about the college’s programs and staff. Coupled with my missing the atmosphere and camaraderie of campus life, I decided to apply when the right position came along. And, after talking with various faculty and staff here at Green River, I absolutely knew that this was the place I wanted to be.

On the car ride to work, what do you listen to?

I alternate between the morning show with Dave Ross on 97.3, 710 ESPN or SiriusXM, 80s on 8.

What was the very first job you ever had?

I was a bagger at a small grocery store in my hometown of St. Petersburg, Florida. I actually applied to be a cashier at the store, but was told I had to work my way up in order to do so. To this day, I still remember being trained in the correct way to load groceries into a bag . . . and it’s not putting the tomatoes or bananas in first!

What about your new position is most exciting for you?

I am a researcher by nature and, in exploring Workforce Education at Green River, I quickly realized the amazing group of talent that exists with the current staff. I am looking forward to getting to know each and every one of our team and seeing how their strengths contribute to the successes of our students and school.

What is one thing you’d love to accomplish in your first year at Green River?

I would like to continue the outstanding work we perform at the college, while promoting what we do and how well we do it even further. What that means in practical terms is collaborating and partnering with as many for-profit, governmental, nonprofit and educational institutions as possible, whether locally, statewide and even nationally.

What three accomplishments are you most proud of in your life?

On a personal basis, I am most proud of my son, daughter and husband. All three are healthy, accomplished and have a work ethic that is second to none. On a professional level, I am proud of being the first in my immediate family to graduate from college with advanced degrees, receiving a national grant for my doctoral research that resulted in my dissertation being in the Library of Congress and developing an electronic resume kit for Pierce County job seekers that was recognized as a statewide Best Practice.

If your coworkers were to give you an office nickname, what would that be?

I was actually given the nickname of “Mamacita” a few years ago by a colleague of mine from WorkSource Pierce, and when I asked him why, he told me that I was like everyone’s little work mom . . . interested in what they were doing and supportive of their efforts. I was very touched when he told me that.

For Green River’s annual talent show (this doesn’t actually exist), what hidden talent would you showcase for everyone?

I could demonstrate how to make Southern dishes like Brunswick Stew, turnip greens and hushpuppies.

If G.R.E.E.N. were an acronym for something, what would each letter stand for?

Gators

Relish

Education’s

Empowering

Nature

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