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Q&A With Senior Executive Board Member, Vani Jain


Please share a bit about your roles within KS WELI over the years.


“I joined KS WELI for the first time my junior year, and I was an outreach committee member. It was back when student council was still a thing and you had to apply, so I actually applied to be on the executive committee without even being involved in KS WELI. I didn’t end up getting in, but I think because my application still stood out, they sent me a contract to be a committee member, so that’s how I started off my first role. I interviewed again at the end of the year and I wanted to try a new role and to broaden my horizons, so I interviewed for exec and I became the VP for SHEreads.”


What are your plans for post-grad?


“I am going to be heading back to my hometown, Houston, Texas, and I have luckily managed to snag an offer for a full-time role at Shell in their 2024 graduate program. “


What have been the most valuable takeaways from KS WELI that you will carry with you after college?


“I think for me it’s about community. KS WELI has shown me that there’s so many people who are willing to help you and support you with your goals and dreams. I mean, we have these wonderful programs like BuildHER, FoundHER, HelpHER. We are so community and women-focused that we are giving back to those people who probably needed that help and couldn’t get it from anyone else. In addition to appreciating your community being the biggest takeaway, I think it's important to realize the strength of believing in yourself. I used to be a ‘turtle.’ I was always in my shell, very introverted. If you ask any of the previous KS WELI members, they will tell you I was very quiet in the beginning, but because everyone was so welcoming, it encouraged me to speak out and even just talk a little more. I’m very thankful for them helping me believe in myself and allowing me to give back to the community.”


How has your time on the Executive Board helped shape you as a leader and entrepreneur?


“As an exec member, it has really developed my leadership skills. Because I was so introverted, I didn’t know if I could really take that stance of being a leader and guiding people in events and meetings. The fact that I have been encouraged to just go for it and just do what I think is right, especially for SHEreads, I’ve been given a lot of autonomy in making sure whatever I do is for the good of the organization as a whole. This has really encouraged me to always do the right thing and set an example for people if they ever need someone to look up to, or even general guidance for their own journey. I think how I went from not really talking, to slowly talking to people, and now to leading a whole team with my Co-VP Shaili, it has just shown tremendous growth in my personality. As an entrepreneur, that kind of spurred me to think “oh, I’m seeing all these women start their own businesses,” and I was very encouraged to start my own. To be honest, I was in a pilot stage for one of them where I thought it could maybe work, but unfortunately didn’t pan out. But I am grateful that KS WELI has even taught me about entrepreneurship even just through observation of others being able to watch these people take that leap, and down the road I could even do that myself.”


Do you think you will bring your entrepreneurial side with you post-grad?


“I think that it will be difficult right away, just because of graduation and working a full-time job, and I’m not sure how much time I would be able to dedicate to starting a business. But that’s the beautiful thing about entrepreneurship, it’s very intense but also gives a lot of reward for what you put in. Right now, if I want to start something of my own, I want to be able to give it enough time, so even if it doesn’t turn out well, I have no regrets. So although I don’t think I will be starting anything of my own right now, there are certainly possibilities down the road and if doors of possibility open, I won’t close them.”


What has been your favorite KS WELI event?


“I have such a deep appreciation for KS WELI, and I’ve never felt like an event was a waste of time. On a more organizational scale, I think it would be Women’s Summit, because that was my first time as a committee member seeing the scale that KS WELI could do these events at and what it took to gather all these women in one place. Seeing all these well-known talented people did something to me, and I knew this was a club I wanted to be part of and made me wish I joined earlier. Within SHEreads, I think my favorite was the most recent workshop which was the panel with Ms. Tiffany from Tiff’s Treats. This provided immense clarity for me, since it's that time of the semester where it's the end and a race to the finish line. It really helped me set things into motion and take a step back and look at the bigger picture, so I’m really appreciative of KS WELI for giving me these opportunities.”



 

About the Author:


Lauren Sitrin '26

Advertising Major

Web Communications Committee

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