MAGNIFYING, No. 4: Jennifer Humphreys

June 05 2017

We spoke with Department of Film and Media Arts Office Assistant, Jennifer Humphreys, for this episode of MAGNIFYING. Our creative community here at the College of Fine Arts is diverse and wide spread. With the goal of gaining a deeper knowledge and awareness of the people within our community, we bring you MAGNIFYING, a series dedicated to showcasing the talent of our students, faculty, and staff.

Tell us about yourself: Name, where you are from, what you do and how you got into your field of work? 
Hello all! My name is Jennifer Humphreys, I will also answer to Jen, Jenni, and, occasionally, “Hey you.” I grew up in Millville, UT, a small little farming town located in Cache Valley. 

What do I do? 
Well, for work, I am the Program Assistant for the Film and Media Arts Department. This position has me doing an array of duties; such as, managing the film equipment lab, helping the faculty in any way I can, and helping the students as much as I can. You’ll find me either behind a desk, or, running around FMAB and the Art building.What I do for fun, well, I enjoy going to movies, listening to music, being outside when it’s warm (the cold and I are not friends), and photography; however, what I enjoy doing the most in my spare time, is hanging out with family and friends, and spoiling my four nieces and my nephew. 

How did you get into your field of work?
Picture this, Logan, Utah, 2009… (Wow, I think I’ve been consuming too many episodes of Golden Girls lately.)Are you ready for a long story, for what, could be, a short answer? I, sure hope so. Stories are fun. Right?After about a 10-year career as a nanny, I found myself thinking about going back to school. I honestly didn’t know, even after ten years since graduating high school, what I was going to study; but then, like a lightning bolt, out of the blue, I was struck. Film!!I had, always, enjoyed filmmaking, granted, I didn’t have much experience, making, films, but I loved it, and I loved editing videos together for family and friends. I thought long and hard about film school, and asked family and friends what they thought about me studying film, luckily, they all supported the idea.So, I applied to several film schools, one of the schools I was admitted into, was Brooks Institute, located in beautiful, Ventura, CA.  I couldn’t pass up moving to sunny California; so, I packed my bags, said my teary goodbyes, and hopped in my car. I loved Brooks Institute! However, I couldn’t stomach the idea of being hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt after graduating; so, I packed my bags, said my teary goodbyes to my beach, and transferred to USU. I figured once I finished my general education, I would transfer to the University of Utah, or BYU to study film. I started at the U in 2011, and was hired as a work-study student in the film department in 2012.I loved working in the Film and Media Arts Department, and I learned a great deal from others as a work-study student, I benefited greatly, being able to learn more about the equipment, the faculty, the staff, the students, and the department as a whole.Upon graduation, in 2014, I was asking myself the age-old question, the question that, all, soon to be graduates ask, what next?Well, for me, I was granted the possibility of staying with the department, when I was asked if I wanted to interview for the, soon to be, vacated, Office Assistant position. I jumped at the opportunity. I was interviewed and was offered the position. I said yes, yes, yes! And well, here I am!I have never regretted my decision to study film, or to study film at the University of Utah. I am, very, fortunate to work at the University of Utah in the Film and Media Arts Department. I absolutely love what I do! I love working in a creative environment, where students are encouraged to embrace their creativity, and are supported in doing so. I love being able to help, alongside, our wonderful faculty and staff, to help our students find their visions, embrace those visions, and bring those visions to life through art. I am a very lucky individual. 

What has surprised me the most in my life? 
Life! Life has surprised me the most.I am person who likes lists, order, and plans. But, it seems as though, whatever plans I have for myself, these plans are foiled, and changed. For better, or, for worse. However, no matter what the outcome of my foiled plans, I always learn something. Always! I learn to endure. I learn to expect the unexpected, which, is, an oxymoron, but seriously, my life is unexpected and I expect it to be no other way. I also learn patience. A lot of patience. But, no matter what my plans have been, or are, my life is so much better than I would, or could, have ever planned.  What do you wish you had known/been told? This is a good question. I’m pretty sure that I’ve been given a lot of wonderful advice, filled with all sorts of wisdom. The real question is, did I listen to that given wisdom? Probably not. But that’s another story.So, I am going to go off the rails here a bit, and maybe, dispense some words of wisdom that I have learned over, the many, years of my life.Some of my best friends are people who are nothing like me, we hold differences in opinions, hold different beliefs, and even look different. I learn so much from these individuals. It’s important that we don’t, all, hold the same thoughts, opinions, and beliefs. It is important, because we can learn so much from each other. We are able to form new thoughts, new opinions, and new beliefs when sharing, with respect, who we are with others and allowing them to share with us. If we all believe the same thing, we would end up in a never-ending loop of things we already know, and hold true; which, ultimately, ends the ability to learn and to grow. The straight, often traveled path, is, definitely the most appealing, and the easier choice, as we already know it, and have traveled it. But, as Robert Frost wrote. sometimes the path less traveled by, makes all the difference. So, take a different path once in a while. Meet new people. Visit new places. Learn from those who are different from you. It has made all the difference in my life. And, in doing such, we may, as Spock would say, “live long and prosper.”