Skip to main content

Where are you located and what are you up to?


I'm currently still residing in Fredonia. I work in Buffalo at the regional office of U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer. My official title is "WNY Deputy Regional Director." When trying to describe my job, I often struggle because no two days are the same. Plus, there is always some new challenge or some unexpected complication that changes the trajectory of your daily routine. I get to witness history being made every single day, and more often than not, I'm an active participant. It's really a dream come true.


Jordan Nicholson (center) with (l to r) Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Rep. Brian Higgins, and Senator Chuck Schumer

How did Fredonia's Dept. of History prepare you for your current work?

I'll give you an example! Historians love examples. Not long ago I was meeting with a group of citizens from the Middle East. Their concerns were very nuanced, and they were numerous. Thanks to Dr. Vink, I was able to read critically and analyze the text that was presented to me before the meeting. Thanks to Dr. Fabian, I was able to recall the geographic location of the North African countries involved and identify potential conflicts that might exist in the region. Thanks to Dr. McCord, I had a working knowledge of the alliances and the OPEC nations, as well as the geographic trade routes and ethnic strife that was present in some of the areas we were discussing.
Being a history major, particularly one at Fredonia, forces you to think critically. History is the study of stuff that remains. In many cases, you're forced to put together a puzzle that might not have all the pieces. The more puzzles you put together, the better you are determining which pieces are missing and where they're supposed to go. This is not a skill that should be taken for granted, especially in the political arena.

What advice do you have to freshman just entering the program?

1) Oh my gosh, GET INVOLVED! I wouldn't have had interviews and I wouldn't have had a job otherwise. Fredonia is a small school, so getting involved is easy. I was involved in the College Democrats, Fredonia Radio Systems, my residence hall governing board, and many other things before I made the transition to student government. Once there, I served in all three branches and became President of the Student Association my junior year. I served on the Faculty Student Association Board of Directors, various search committees, and even on the College Council (Board of Trustees). I was able to make connections that most college students would've killed for. My participation on these boards was certainly enhanced by the skills I laid out above.
2) Learn to dress properly. Nothing is worse than interviewing a candidate for an internship that's wearing a Ziggy Marley t-shirt and a pair of Birkenstocks. When you come to college, have at suit and some matching shoes. My first suit in college came courtesy of the Salvation Army in downtown Dunkirk and cost approximately $15. Tying a tie isn't that hard. You're in college. You're an adult...dress like one. Dr. Lyon used to tease me about wearing sweat pants and sneakers because it only happened like twice.
3) Do the reading. I regret that I didn't do this more. You're given the opportunity...errr, college to read some pretty fantastic works. As many books as I read, there were probably as many as I didn't. Use your time in college to grow yourself as a person. That means learning, too.
4) Your professors aren't idiots. Quite the contrary. They are some of the smartest people I've ever met. As much as you might think you're able to pull a fast one on them, they know. Just because they decide not to hold your hand doesn't meant they don't know exactly what you're doing. They won't forget come the end of the semester.
5) Don't ever get up for coffee in the middle of Dr. Vink's class. Foresight is good. Caffeinate before your 8am class.

History Department

  • E332 Thompson Hall State University of New York at Fredonia Fredonia, NY 14063

Take the next step

Request Info Visit Apply