Jessica Houston spent the 2010-2011 academic school year as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant at the Volzhsky Institute of Humanities in Southern Russia. She taught English to university students on topics as varied as International Environmental Policies to the poetry of Langston Hughes. The arid steppe was quite a contrast for her as a Portland native and former exchange student to Vladivostok. Her travels across the diverse landscapes of Russia during her fellowship sparked an interest in how geography shapes cultures.
Jessica kept a blog of her Russian experiences at: http://onthevolga.wordpress.com/
She is currently exploring her interests in international conservation work and contemplating graduate programs in geography while working as an administrative assistant at the Wild Salmon Center in Portland: http://www.wildsalmoncenter.org