Antelope Intros: Heather Banks and Jessie Sanchez
Antelope Intros is a recurring GCU Today feature that introduces some of our new employees to the people around them in a way that is fun and informative. Employees are eligible to be featured in the month following their orientation.
Job location: Peoria
What attracted you to GCU? I was attracted to Grand Canyon University because it is based in my community and well-known for local philanthropy. I was also attracted to Grand Canyon because of its stellar reputation and quality education. It’s important to me to work for a solid university offering students a quality education at an affordable price while also giving back to the community in which it’s located.
What do you do for fun and where do you find that outlet? I absolutely love traveling and am currently saving for a trip to Thailand at the end of this year, but my dream destination is the Maldives. I am a huge Oregon Ducks fan and love watching college football!
What are you passionate about? I am passionate about working for equal rights, and I dedicate time and money to various charities and groups affiliated with marriage equality and assisting displaced gay youth. I am also involved in local-level politics.
What are your favorite places or events in the Valley that you like to visit? I enjoy the central Phoenix/Arcadia area and love making my way through different restaurants. There are some great places to eat in the Arcadia district. I also enjoy hiking around the Valley.
Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know: I was an elite gymnast and trained for 16 years for the 1996 Olympics.
What are you most proud of? My 16-year-old son.
Job location: Tempe
What attracted you to GCU? The private Christian university experience, similar to what I had for my undergrad.
What do you do for fun and where do you find that outlet? I have been a makeup artist for several years and still do that on the side for weddings and special events. I also love sports, pretty much any sport, but my favorite to watch is the NBA. Go Lakers! (I am from California, don’t judge.)
What are you passionate about? I’m passionate about making a difference in someone’s life, whether it is making a woman feel beautiful with something as simple as makeup, or now in my new role, helping potential students find their purpose.
What are your favorite places or events in the Valley that you like to visit? I love going to D-backs games, and I love Tea Fusion at Tempe Marketplace — they have over 100 teas to choose from.
Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know: I am 1/4 Hungarian.
What are you most proud of? My parents — they are my biggest role models. As I am getting ready to get married in November of this year, they have been married for almost 26 years. Their marriage is not perfect, but it is a success. I hope to live happily ever after, as they have!