SheJumps scholarship recipient and new Ikon Pass holder, Jessica Beltran, recently returned to the winter sports world after years away and is excited to experience everything the pass can unlock. We caught up with Jessica after a recent visit to Copper Mountain in Colorado to talk about what she’s loving the most this season, her mountain goals, and where she hopes the future of skiing and riding will go.
Hey Jessica, give us a quick bio of who you are. Where you live, what you do, your interests, and what type of projects you’re involved with.
My name is Jessica Beltran. I live in Glenwood Springs Colorado and I am attending Colorado Mountain College. I have my associates in digital media and I am working to get my Bachelor’s in Leadership & Management. My passion is videography and photography, so I am trying to improve my skills. During my free time I really enjoy rock climbing, boxing and weight lifting.
And how long have you been skiing/riding? Or are you new to the sport?
I snowboarded when I was around 6-10 and I stopped up until last season. I had never been on skis until this season and I am loving it! I am trying to pick up snowboarding again as well.
Why did you apply for the joint scholarship from SheJumps and Ikon Pass? What do you hope to accomplish this season?
I applied for the scholarship because a group of friends that I had really wanted to get on the slopes but I knew that financially, I was not going to be able to travel with them. Thankfully, SheJumps awarded me the scholarship and I have been able to travel to new places that I had never been before and enjoy life a little more.
This season, I hope to be able to go down a blue [run] easily on skis. I have always loved the winter time so I am excited that I can finally do winter sports.
We’re so glad this has allowed you the chance to get out on the snow, and help encourage others to try skiing and riding. Why do you think it’s important to have representation in winter sports and outdoor adventures?
As a woman of color, it is important for us to get out there and represent because we have a generation behind us, watching what we do. We have to empower others to get out there and to not be afraid of doing things that are “out of the norm.” You do not see many people of color that are on the slope and I want to be the person that little girls can look at and say “I can do that, too.”
Representation matters because it shows people that they are seen and they can do anything they set their mind to. I know that when I saw Simone Biles in the Olympics, it gave me the ability to stand taller and know that even though I am short, I can do anything I set my mind to.
We couldn’t agree more. The mountains welcome all and that representation on the slopes is so important. How do you hope to see the sports of skiing and snowboarding evolving over the next few years?
I want to see more women and more people of color competing. I want to be able to see these incredible woman show off their insane capabilities. Nowadays snow sports are not as male dominant as they used to be and I want that to continue.
That’s something we can get on board with, as well. Turning back to your time on the mountain, what has been your favorite experience so far this season?
My favorite mountain so far has been Copper and Aspen Mountain. Their terrain is beginner friendly and I love the amount of support you get from the community. Their crew on the mountain is also very attentive. Every wipe out I had, someone passing was always checking on me and I really appreciated that.
Is there an Ikon Pass destination that you’re really excited to visit?
I would love to try and visit Mammoth Mountain or Big Bear.
Whether you’re encouraging others to get out on the slopes, or seeking an adventure of your very own, it’s your time to capture those mountain moments. Experience 50 destinations worldwide with the 22/23 Ikon Pass, now on sale.