Jenna Leazott ?18

Jenna Leazott

Class Year


Current home

Elmhurst, Illinois


Political Science and Sociology

Current Position

Short-Term Recruiter for the Young Adults in Global Mission Program for the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America

Jenna Leazott graduated from Carthage in 2018 with degrees in political science and sociology. She took many classes in the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, and received several awards, including the Ruud Scholar, Judith Schaumburg Award for Excellence in Women’s and Gender Studies, Olson-Thom Scholarship for Excellence in Political Science, Political Science Senior Recognition Award, Sociological Imagination Award for Sociology, and honors for her political science and sociology theses.

Ms. Leazott credits Professors Ellen Hauser and Danielle Geary as holding fundamental roles in her successes. She states that each of them believed in her, celebrated her successes, and challenged her outlook on the world by providing a vulnerable classroom setting and equipping her with concrete ways to live out her life. 

Through the classes Ms. Leazott took on women’s and gender studies, she gained a broader understanding of gender and sexuality, as well as the ability to discuss these topics in various capacities, making her a better thinker, reader, and writer. The skills that she gained from taking these classes help Ms. Leazott better communicate and understand the realities of LGBTQ+ migrants and youth who she works with as a recruiter for the Young Adults in Global Mission Program for the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America. 

“I have always been someone who questions what I’ve grown up being taught, and Carthage was a great way to explore that. I got to have my worldview turned upside-down and was given the resources and ability to explore my own passions, to dig deeper to uncover truths about things I had accepted as fact for my whole life. I was taught strategies for resilience, both in my academic and personal life, and my passion for service was fostered throughout my time at Carthage in many different expressions.”

Jenna Leazott, ’18

What have you enjoyed most about your career?

“I just returned from serving a year in Mexico through the YAGM program and love the opportunity to process my year through telling my stories. I get to talk about a program I am incredibly passionate about, connect with young adults, and make connections for my future career with people all over the country.”

How did Carthage prepare you?

“I’m definitely a better public speaker after Carthage, through organizations like Model United Nations, defending my thesis, giving presentations in class, and being a Student Ambassador for the Office of Admissions. I was always encouraged to find my voice and be creative with how I shared my information, which has helped immensely in connecting with youth from all over the country.”

How has your liberal arts education benefitted you?

“The cross-cultural experience I received at Carthage through J-Term study tours and through organizations like Model United Nations helped me immensely when I was living abroad in Mexico. I was working with migrants from all over Latin America and was able to navigate cultural differences and establish deeper relationships because I had received so much exposure to cross-cultural experiences during my time at Carthage”