Alumnae Spotlight – April 2016

April’s Alumnae Spotlight highlights some of the amazing things our Soror, Jotie Dhillon is up to! Read about her story & the advice she has to share!

What are you doing today and how did joining Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc. prepare you for this?

Currently, I work for the County Executive of Fairfax County in Virginia as a management analyst. More specifically, I work in the Government Relations Department. I was heavily involved in the General Assembly Session in Virginia that started on January 13th and just ended March 12th.
During these last couple months, I have learned a lot about how the local government works as well as how it works with State and Federal Government. I had an opportunity to meet with a handful of Senators and Delegates and other people who have a huge hand in the legislation process for the State of Virginia. Although at times it was a little overwhelming, the confidence I have gained from being a sister allowed me to push those feelings aside. However, it’s just not just about the confidence — its the preparedness of any situation. I was able to think fast on my feet if any unforeseen circumstances occurred and fix them without getting off track, I did my research beforehand on the different people I would be around so that when I introduced myself or if I was ever in an elevator with a senator, I knew who I was greeting. A lot of my work is done “behind the scenes” and tasks vary from being in communication with the IT department to make sure presentations and meetings run smoothly and setting up our office in Richmond, to creating and reviewing important documents that will be available for the public and working with the many agencies within the county in regard to bills. Kappa Phi Gamma has prepared me for each of these tasks and all other work that I do — I understand that all work will not be glorified but it is just as important (if not more), I have worked with sisters on all levels which makes it easier to work with my “higher ups” as well as my peers who may or may not be the same age. Also, Kappa Phi Gamma provided an opportunity to work with many different organizations during my
undergraduate career which has only heightened my ability to do so in my work.

What were your biggest challenges and struggles?

My biggest challenge with my current position was that I just started on January 4, 2016. So, when the General Assembly session started, I was basically thrown into it, whereas others had months and months to prepare for this time of the year. There was a lot of catching up for me to do in regards to finding out background information about people and the process of the session.

What is your favorite part of the business/work/company?

My favorite part is the structure of how things are done and the people that I work with. There are procedures and protocols in place for almost everything and I really like that because I have worked in places where there was little or no direction which makes it very difficult for everyone to be on the same page. I think with everyone being on the same page, the environment is more pleasant and everyone is just so kind to one another. I am still relatively new, but the welcoming has been incredible.

What is your work/life balance?

Along with my job that I described earlier, I also work at Red Lobster as a waitress. I’ve been working at Red Lobster since I was 17 and although my reasons for working two jobs have changed over the years, right now its a place that’s allowing me to be more than just afloat financially. That being said, I work about 50 hours a week (give or take) and when I’m not working, I am usually hanging out with my roommates, trying to get a workout in (if Netflix doesn’t take over) or just doing other random “adulting.”

What do you perceive are the benefits of joining Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc.?

The benefits of joining Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc. are limitless. The position I hold today was recommended by my big, Sonam Dua, and her mother was one of my references. The networking opportunities are amazing, but the sisterhood is no less. I have been treated like a second daughter by Shashi Dua (Sonam’s mother) and during my struggles away from home I have found so much support and love from all my sisters here as well as their families. Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc. really does empower you but it also teaches a big lesson — what you get out of something depends on what you put in.

What advice do you have for women that are attempting to follow your career path?

My advice for women attempting to get into the legal field is to EXPLORE. There is so much to do and at times it can be tough to find the right niche. I was set on law school before I started my undergraduate career but as I moved forward I have gone through many different experiences and have learned of so many opportunities. Also, it may not always feel like you’re not in a position where you want to be or making as much money or even doing the work that you believe you are put on this earth to do…but that’s okay! As long as you make each job or experience a stepping stone closer to where you want to be, that’s all that matters. Most importantly, remember, the legal field isn’t as glamorous as it is portrayed on your favorite TV Show but there is no reason you can’t be.