Jordan LeJeune (Student)
By University Communications
Monday, 10 22 2018
For many students, summer consists of taking some much needed leisure time. This past summer, Jordan LeJeune’s so-called “leisure time” was spent hanging out with dolphins.
LeJeune left Texas over the summer to complete an internship at the Dolphin Research Center in Grassy Key, Fla., where she gained level-one experience in the Animal Care and Training Unit. For three months she learned the necessities and details of what animal trainers must do. Fridays, she said, were her “dolphin days” where she shadowed training sessions and, in time, gave back rubs, practiced handshakes and gave kisses to the dolphins. LeJeune worked particularly close with one dolphin named Rainbow. She admitted that she was in awe when given the opportunity to kiss the dolphin.
“It was really fun for me getting to feed and build a relationship with the dolphins. You weren’t ever bored because you could go outside and watch the dolphins. It was really cool and a great experience,” LeJeune explained.
Originally from Brusly, La., LeJeune completed high school eager for a fresh start. In her search for universities that offered the familiar small-town feel to which she had become accustomed, she found Texas A&M University-San Antonio (A&M-SA). So, she moved to San Antonio, Texas and became part of the inaugural freshman class of 2016.
Once settled into her new life in Texas, LeJeune began to grow her roots by getting involved in the university and becoming a Jaguar Ambassador. Through a friend, she found out about a certain internship opportunity where she could fulfill her dreams of getting hands-on experience with marine life.
LeJeune plans to go back in the summer of 2019 to become a level-two intern and gain advanced experience with the marine life. At A&M-SA, she is majoring in history and minoring in psychology, which is aimed at animal behavior — all in support of her aspiration of becoming a marine life trainer.
LeJeune knew working with marine life was her calling since she was five-years-old when she watched marine animal trainers work with dolphins and sea lions. Her first dolphin kiss happened when she was eight-years-old and she knew they had a special place in her heart. LeJeune is one of many Jaguar students on a personal mission to make their dreams become reality, one internship at a time.