Alumnae Spotlight – May 2017

May’s Alumnae Spotlight highlights what our soror, Priya Shah, from the Charter Line of Omicron Chapter has been up to!

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

I am the first South Asian Editor for GIPHY (Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham GIFs for lifeeeee), which is a search engine and online database for GIFs. The company is expanding into the South Asian market and I am setting the foundation for it’s pages so it’s really exciting to be able to spearhead that. I am also the product developer/owner of a Board Game called Desi Chaat, that I developed for the South Asian community!

Joining Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc. showed me the value of a hard work ethic. Chartering Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc. at Rutgers University made me realize the importance of setting foundations, whether it’s for personal projects or business projects, and understanding that it takes time to do so. The Sorority also gave me the confidence to know that it’s okay if I don’t know how to do something, but if I have the will and the dedication to learn, I’ll get the job done. Focus is also so important when it comes to achieving anything. Don’t get distracted by the million things you can get distracted by. JUST DO IT.

What were your biggest challenges and struggles?

After releasing and marketing Desi Chaat – I was unsure of what I wanted to do next. It wasn’t the best time period for me but it really helped me figure out my likes and dislikes, how to deal with struggles/sadness and who I could lean on during the hard times. I am so much more self-aware of myself and my decisions because of the unsure times. So if you ever at a point feel lost in life and you’re working hard to figure it out – don’t worry, you’ll get there!

What is your favorite part of your position/career/field?

For GIPHY: I love being able to set the Foundation for Giphy India. It’s really awesome to see my editorial decisions on Twitter/Whatsapp/Slack/other apps come to life. It’s also thrilling to be able to work on various parts of products (whether it’s UX research & design, Business Development, Partnerships, etc)! We recently did a project for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and we worked with people who have not-so-norm careers to know more about how they maneuvered through that, all while being a minority and if/how they dealt with racism. I loved hearing their stories as well – it was inspiring!

For Desi Chaat: Being able to bring people of different cultures and generations together! I love it when people tell me when they play and how they feel about the game. It really means a lot to me! Setting a foundation for a Business for my family was also really really important to me so I am happy to have done that.

For Graphic Design: Being able to be a part of something that is so important in a person’s life (whether it’s a Wedding, a Bridal Shower, Bachelorette, etc).

What is your work/life balance?

Oh man. I love planning ahead. I like making lists, packing well in advance, meal prepping, etc. For instance, I usually pack 20 or so boxes of Desi Chaat that are ready to ship so that I don’t have to do it every time I have an order, which saves me a lot of time.

I think about how I can make my life easier when I’m driving or in transportation, so that when I get home or wherever I need to be, I already have my things planned out. Luckily I can work remotely, so it’s a huge energy/time saver!

I am also a huge fan of multi-tasking and being efficient. If I can find an easy work flow – nothing makes me happier.

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

There are so many benefits!

-Social Confidence
-Self Development
-Leadership Skills
-Organization/Management Skills
-Knowing how to work with people who work differently than you (super important)

I often tell new sorors to be kind to your fellow Greek members no matter what Fraternity or Sorority they are a member of, and to not let the little things get in the way. Remember, you have a whole life after Graduation and you never know if you’ll end up being co-workers with a person, in class with them for higher education, or be in the same room with them for one reason or another. When I released Desi Chaat, not only did KPhiG support me, but so did a lot of members of other Greek organizations, and I was absolutely touched and felt so appreciative for this. It really made all the difference in the world.

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

It’s OK to take on different/multiple positions and roles – but be smart/strategic about it. You’ll be working for the majority of your life, so it would be nice to not hate what you do. Keep on learning and stay focused!

Why did you choose to start (Business/Company)?

I was a part of the Association of Indians at Rutgers and realized that there weren’t tangible games for South Asians to play. I wanted to create something that a majority, if not all South Asians of all different generations could come together and play – especially since South Asians have so many different dialects, languages, and cultures. I knew I wanted to have a Business foundation for my family, so that was another motivation.

How do you measure your success?

I measure success by various ways!

– Self awareness (knowing myself) and why I am making the decisions I am making.
– Being healthy (physically/mentally)
– Making my friends & family laugh 🙂
– Knowing that my co-workers are willing to come to me for help because they are confident that I can finish the task.
– Knowing how much I can practically take on (projects at work, freelance graphic designing, and working on Desi Chaat)

Just trying to design a life with people who make me happy, with work that makes me happy/proud to do 🙂