Before arriving at Berea College in August as a first-year, Isaiah Jackson says he had minimal experience in woodworking. Isaiah is from Bowling Green, KY and intends to major in biology, to pursue a career relating to wildlife. Despite his profession that he had little experience in craft, Isaiah has seen first-hand the way craft can influence the world around us, and contribute to a more sustainable way of life.
Isaiah’s only previous encounter with woodworking was part of his experience as a Boy Scout, both in the form of his Woodworking Merit Badge and in the form of his Eagle Scout project, which involved the creation of bat habitat boxes to house endangered bats who are rapidly losing their natural habitats. He and his father worked together to bring the project to fruition and in the process he learned how to work with his hands and make do with what tools he had.
Upon arriving at Berea College, Isaiah, like many other first-years, was assigned a position in Student Craft. Of his first impression upon beginning his labor assignment Isaiah says “I was pretty impressed, I liked seeing the whole wood shop.” He has also found a joy in the work he does, saying “I was surprised by how much I like it. I feel really satisfied when I finish an item.” While he enjoys working on the items for production, Isaiah is also excited for the chance to branch out and try his hand at his own woodworking projects. He would especially like the chance to fashion a body for his electric bass, or a unique piece of furniture.