Just the Beginning…

 

My name is Nikki Wall and I am a Second-Year student at the University of Pittsburgh. Even though this is my fourth semester, I am academically a first semester Junior and will be graduating December of 2019. I am a Marketing major in the College of Business Administration and I am pursuing two certificates, one in Leadership and Ethics and one in Digital Media. Professionally, my interests surround advertising and social media as well as working with children. Last summer, I was a teaching assistant at Luminari INC. where I focused on teaching advanced high school students the importance of safe and smart social media, basic professionalism, and foreign policy, while also giving advice on things such as college choice, SAT prep, and AP testing. We were given the opportunity to work with many business professionals and workshop leaders in Pittsburgh, PA focusing on professionalism, public speaking, conflict resolution, foreign policy, and other important topics. We also traveled to Washington D.C. and visited the Embassy of Japan, the Embassy of the Russian Federation, and the Newseum. I will be returning to this program, again as a Teaching Assistant, the summer of 2018. Along with that position, I will be working as a Commercial Marketing Intern at Covestro in Robinson. I will be getting my official job description and placement in the next few weeks. Outside of school and work, I am a cheerleader for the University. I get the opportunity to cheer for sports like football, men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball, wrestling, and gymnastics and be involved in the culture that is Pitt Athletics. Pitt Cheer and Dance also have a strong passion for helping and being involved in the community. We participate in many events such as Relay for Life, Pitt Dance Marathon, Breast Cancer Awareness games, and as many 5ks and Walks for the Cure as possible. I am also currently serving as Historian of my professional business fraternity, Delta Sigma Pi. With this position, I maintain the fraternity’s social media pages, schedule all apparel orders, and help however I can in the planning and execution of fraternity events. I am also currently shadowing our Vice President of Community Service to learn the ins and outs of the position in hopes to bring new volunteer opportunities to the fraternity. I am also a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success and have gained valuable knowledge from our professional events. If there were more hours in each day I would love to participate in the Pitt Stages productions and join a group like Heinz Chapel Choir.

The Service Learning program I am participating in is the Phi Beta Lambda International Service Learning Project based in Bolivia. Earlier this semester, it was brought to the attention that the Certificate Program of Leadership and Ethics students had the opportunity to travel to Trinidad and Tobago for a Service Learning Project. I remembered hearing about these types projects from my friends in Phi Beta Lambda and Alpha Kappa Psi and always wondered why Delta Sigma Pi was not participating in these trips. I immediately took action and reached out the Study Abroad office in hopes of creating a Delta Sigma Pi Service Learning Project. They informed me of the Phi Beta Lambda and Alpha Kappa Psi trips to Bolivia and Puerto Rico and invited brother of Delta Sigma Pi to join the trips. Sadly, the Puerto Rico trip had to be put on pause because of the recently hurricane. So, myself and four other Delta Sigma Pi brothers decided to take the opportunity to partner with Phi Beta Lambda and travel to Bolivia. I am really looking forward to this trip as it will be my first time out of the country. Traveling is very important to me to incorporate in my life because of my positions in foreign policy and my desire to understand different cultures. I am very excited to gain experience working with a team on a project that will benefit a real client. Being able to see the kids I am helping and see the impact of my hard work will be the most rewarding moment of my college career. I want to be able to incorporate the things I will learn on this trip to my professional career. As Pitt Business stresses, studying abroad makes you stand out. The interesting part of this study abroad opportunity is that I am not traveling abroad take classes and explore; I am traveling to work with a company and help the community. I will easily be able to relate my experiences within the Service Learning class and in country to situations I find myself in when I have my full-time career. Since I am graduating a semester earlier than a lot of my peers, it is incredibly important to take these opportunities to advance myself in every way I am able to put myself in a good position to start a career after graduation. Luckily, Pitt Business provides me these opportunities to gain as much professional experience as possible. I am also hoping to increase the variety of community service events within Delta Sigma Pi. I think continuing to send brothers to Bolivia will be beneficial in many ways. It will increase the positive relationship between CEOLI and Pitt Business by sending similar students who are extremely motivated and passionate about what they sign up to do and selling cards as an organization will increase awareness of CEOLI and increase cards sales. It will also be helpful for groups traveling in the future to know the pervious team. In Delta Sigma Pi we stress that our organization is a family, we will always help any brother in need. The group will easily be able to explain the project to the next team and provide any help they would possibility need and be a key resource along the way.  Overall, I am hoping to gain experience to help me in my future career, increase the involvement of Delta Sigma Pi brother in community service, and travel and learn as much as I possibly can.