NJSACC's Director of Program Services Jessica Heiberg Shares Her Afterschool Story!

Did you attend an afterschool program in your youth? Tell us what you did after school usually.

  • I did not attend an afterschool program. After school, I would come home or go to a friend’s house. Usually I would do homework, watch a little TV and play outside. I spent a lot of time outside and playing with friends.

How were you introduced to NJSACC?

  • I became aware of NJSACC when I ran the afterschool program at my elementary school for the YMCA in Westfield. When the principal of the school retired a new principal came in. He reduced the amount of space that we had to store our items. My boss at the Y had known Diane Genco for a long time and brought her in to help. Within about a month we had resolved the problem and we were given more space to be able to run the program. Not too long after that, I decided to leave the Y and I began working at NJSACC. And as they say, the rest is history : )

When did you start working at NJSACC?

  • 10/2/2000

Your title when you started?

  • Director of Program Services

Your title now?

  • Director of Program Services

In your view, why is afterschool important?

  • I think afterschool is important because it gives kids an opportunity to explore different activities and experience things that they might not normally have the chance to do. Through those experiences they might find something that they become passionate about and really enjoy doing. They can play, spend time with friends, be creative and learn about things in a way that is different from the school day.

In your view, why is NJSACC important?

  • NJSACC is important because it gives providers access to training and resources that help to improve the quality of programming that is offered to NJ’s families. Through our services, programs are able to receive training, network with each other, brainstorm about challenges and celebrate successes. Providing and maintaining quality programming is an ongoing process. There is always more to be learned. NJSACC remains ready to help programs continue on the path to quality so that the families they serve can have peace of mind knowing that their children are being well cared for.
More about Jessica Heiberg, Director of Program Services


Jessica Heiberg is NJSACC’s Director of Program Services. She organizes trainings, provides technical assistance to afterschool programs throughout the state, and coordinates NJSACC’s annual afterschool conference. She has spent her career working with children. Prior to joining NJSACC Jessica worked in a child care center before becoming a site coordinator for an afterschool program and a summer camp. A native of Westfield, New Jersey, she earned her BA in Women’s Studies from Douglass College at Rutgers University. She lives in Fanwood with her husband and three children.