How She Got There: Jennifer Cassetta, Health & Empowerment Coach

Name: Jennifer Cassetta
Age: Forty-something
Job Title and Description: Health & Empowerment Coach
College Name/Major: Fordham University/Business Administration
Twitter Handle: @JennCassetta
Instagram Handle: @JennCassetta

Regardless of where you are in your adulting journey, finding an empowering role model is probably one of your top priorities. After all, who doesn't want to feel more empowered in their lives? If you need some inspo for fitness, health or life itself, then you might want to follow Jennifer Cassetta. When she isn't teaching self-defense moves to people on national television (and otherwise), she's enlivening women to feel stronger and more confident. Thankfully, we had the chance to talk to Jennifer Cassetta about her career as a Health and Empowerment Coach and what the best part of her ever-changing job is. 

Her Campus: What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?

Jennifer Cassetta: It’s funny because I never think of myself as having a job. I have a business and my business is part of who I am. It’s almost like it’s part of my body. It’s always there and I’m always working on it.

What I do is help women feel strong, safe and sexy from the streets to the boardroom. I combine the knowledge of my Master's degree in nutrition, holistic health coaching certification and my 3rd-degree black belt in martial arts to deliver holistic wellness programming to groups and individuals.

Typical days include either working from home or a co-working space. Or I am traveling to speak at a conference, college or corporation in some part of the country.

HC: What is the best part of your job?

JC: I NEVER get bored. I don’t have time to get bored. But really, the best and most rewarding part of my career is that I help empower women to own their power, use their voice powerfully and take a stand for their health and wellbeing. I get satisfaction from watching others transform their physical and emotional health.

HC: What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?

JC: I started to train in martial arts two years after I graduated college. I became so obsessed with it, I had to figure out a way to make it part of my career. So, I became a personal trainer. I went to a fancy boutique gym in the west village of Manhattan and got a meeting with the manager. I told him about my martial arts obsession and how I could teach some form of it there. He decided to take me on as a personal trainer and mentored me until I got certified and started training clients. I left shortly after to pursue my own private practice.

HC: What words of wisdom (well-known quotes, an anecdote from your boss) do you find most valuable?

JC: 'No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.' - Eleanor Roosevelt

I really love this quote. It embodies the fact that WE are in control of how we feel about ourselves, all day every day. No person or circumstance has the power to make us feel bad, inferior or vulnerable unless we hand them that power. Nope! That power is ALL mine.

HC: What is one mistake you made along the way and what did you learn from it?

JC: Mistakes I have made are only things I have learned from and therefore, they served a purpose. My most common mistakes include not charging enough for my services; speaking gigs or private health coaching. When I do that, I wind up feeling resentful and unfulfilled or that my contribution to a project isn’t valued. So, I’ve learned that I need to either charge more or make sure there is some other value that I can get from that experience.

HC: What has been the most surreal moment of your career thus far?

JC: It could be either teaching Carrie Fisher self-defense on The Today Show or traveling the world with a VIP private client and making healthy smoothies on his private jet.

HC: What do you look for when considering hiring someone?

JC: AMBITION. I also would only hire someone with excellent (IRL) communication skills.

HC: What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations?

JC: For anyone looking to get into the wellness field, I would say to dig deep and continue your education and certification as you go. There is so much to learn and to specialize in. Personal trainers, nutritionists and health coaches are a dime a dozen these days. What makes you special and standout is your unique expertise and abilities. Also, a social media presence is great. But it does not surpass your credentials. I get hired on big consultation jobs for my expertise, not based on the number of followers I have on Instagram.

HC: What's the one thing that's stood out to you the most in a resume?

JC: I hired an intern once who put on her resume how much weight she could lift!