Jay graduated from Loyola in 2007 with a BA in International Studies from the College of Arts and Sciences (and was the CAS – Arts Commencement Speaker) before going on to earn a Master’s degree in international relations with an emphasis on international economic development from Seton Hall. While he makes his home in New York, Jay is a literal globe-trotter, traveling the world to work on economic issues ranging from climate change to nuclear non-proliferation. He’s worked with several organizations, including the British Embassy in Washington DC, the United Nations Association, and the Center for Terrorism and Intelligence Studies. A semester at the John Felice Rome Center may have tickled his appetite for a global lifestyle, though he also enjoys playing and watching sports, eating, and hanging out.
What’s the most enduring lesson you learned at Loyola?
The most enduring lesson I learned while at LUC is the value of hard work and perseverance. Without it, I wouldn’t be where I am now, and will not be where I hope to be in the future.
If you could go back to school, what Loyola course would you take? Why?
I would probably take the environment course offered by then-Commissioner Mike Quigley. I always really wanted to take this course, but could never fit it in my schedule. And, that information would have helped me in my current job!
Where was your favorite place on campus?
Without a doubt, the Ashtray [more properly known as Weil Plaza].
What is your favorite place in Chicago?
I really like Grant Park. It was a nice place to get together with friends and relax.
What’s the greatest piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Never settle for less than your best.
What book are you reading right now? Would you recommend it to others?
I am reading a couple of books right now. The Climate Fix by Roger Pielke, In the Lake of the Woods by Tim O’Brien, and The People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn.
What (or who) inspires you?
If you could travel to any time and place in history, where would you opt to go?
1215 to witness the signing of the Magna Carta, which is one of the foundational documents from which our basic rights emerge.
If someone made a movie of your life would it be a drama, a comedy, a romantic-comedy, action film, or science fiction?
Unfortunately, I think it would be a romantic comedy. Maybe like a good one though, like Love Actually.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go, and why?
I have always wanted to visit Mongolia. I hear it’s an experience unlike anything else. The food, culture, language…it’s all very different.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
The desire to not fail and disappoint people.
What’s your favorite Chicago pizza place?
Who would you want to be for a day?
A comedian or a surgeon
Which one best describes you in college: athlete, intellectual, artist, young professional, activist, or social butterfly?
I would say social butterfly, but that might be a function of me not fitting into any of the other categories!