CFAES Give Today

School of Environment and Natural Resources


Alumni Career Spotlight: Ben Jackson

Ben Jackson     
Natural Resource Management ‘19  
Team Photographer, Columbus Blue Jackets     

Ben Jackson wearing a orange flannel shirt and smiling in front of a hockey fieldBen completed his undergraduate degree in SENR in 2019 after majoring in Natural Resource Management. Among his many involvements during his time in SENR, Ben was part of the OSU Slackliners and Broomball, and worked as a Wilderness Ranger Intern for the US Forest Service. After graduation, Ben worked his third season with the US Forest Service and is now the Team Photographer for the Columbus Blue Jackets. 

Read the full interview with Ben:   

A Glance at Ben’s Current Work 

I was just hired in August 2021 as the Team Photographer for the Columbus Blue Jackets!

During the hockey season I photograph live game action at all home hockey games and edit the photos for use by the team, the NHL and Getty Images. Other than game action, I cover corporate and organization events as needed.  

The most rewarding part of my job is being surrounded by great photographers and being able to capture images of my favorite sport. Hockey player on ice with equipment on in front of the goal place with a dark shadow around them

Professional Development     

What were you involved in during college? 
During college, I was involved in OSU Slackliners, Broomball, and Columbus Adult Ice Hockey.  

In terms of internships, I was a Wilderness Ranger Intern for the US Forest Service on the White River National Forest in Vail Colorado the summer of 2017. I was on a crew of 7 and for 3 months we took weekly 4-day backpacking trips into the Holy Cross Wilderness to do trail clearing and campsite inventory. It was a great experience to learn how to use a crosscut saw, various trail work and a fun way to experience the Wilderness area. I worked seasonally for the US Forest Service again in the summers of 2018, 2019 and 2021. During those three years I worked mainly as a Visitor Information Specialist running our district ranger station, but also assisted with Trails, Wilderness, OHV and Fisheries crews as needed. It was a great opportunity to gain experience in my field.  

During the school year I worked as the Photo Editor for the Columbus Blue Jackets from 2013-2020.  

Hikers walking on path in midst of lots of vegetationWhat was a challenge you faced in your professional development and how did you overcome it? 
A challenge in the natural resources field is the expanding public interest in getting outdoors and how to adapt to first time public land users. I overcame it by keeping an open mind and seeing the variety of views and ways of life in which people were coming from.  

A challenge in the photography field is the ever changing world of technology. I do my best to keep up with it by staying up-to-date with current camera/lens technology and network transferring. 

What advice would you give to someone who is still in college and hoping to do what you do? 
My advice for anyone interested in either field of work is to get hands-on experience. Whether an internship/seasonal job, etc; having in person, real life experience was most beneficial for me. 

My summer seasons with the US Forest Service and as the Photo Editor with the Columbus Blue Jackets provided me endless knowledge and experience in both fields of work. 


What was most important to you in your job search?Group of park rangers around a campfire in midst of vegetation
For Natural Resource jobs, I base my search on the location of duty. You can find jobs almost anywhere, so I applied to places I liked or places I was interested in visiting for the season. Cost of living and the availability of employee housing were also big factors. Even with seasonal jobs, I wouldn’t have been able to afford to live/work in Colorado if they didn’t offer employee housing.  


How to connect with Ben:    

Linked In  


Post created October 2021