Meet Shaina Katz, Lambda Beta
When I first joined Phi Mu, I was incredibly shy and never saw myself as the type of person to have a leadership role in any organization. But I believe that the people I met in Phi Mu inspired me to break out of my shell, overcome my shyness and truly be myself. Because of Phi Mu, I’ve pursued many leadership opportunities that I would have never thought possible, including serving my chapter as Philanthropy Chair.
Last year, I was awarded the Mary Frances Elvey Scholarship through Phi Mu Foundation, which helped me afford classes for my academic career that were not offered at my university. I am studying advanced Arabic language and cultural studies to strengthen my translating abilities and eventually work as a Foreign Area Officer or with the Department of State. In order to complete a minor in Arabic studies, I needed to explore a course study that went deeper than an intermediate level that is offered my university. This scholarship helped me attend Arabic classes at the University of Haifa in Israel, and travel to Jordan to conduct research for my Thesis.
If I wasn’t able to go to Haifa, I wouldn’t have been able to advance my Arabic and graduate on time. I also wouldn’t have received much of the necessary experience I need for my future. I was fortunate enough to work for the first halfway house in Israel and work with Palestinians and Israelis on a grassroots level. These experiences were life-changing for me.
As I work to live my dream, I hope to inspire people to not let stereotypes deter them from their goals. People sometimes underestimate sorority women. Many of these same people have judged me personally, saying I’m not tough enough or smart enough for the career I’m pursuing, which is absurd! I have worked and lived in the United States and abroad, am joining the military as an officer after graduation, and speak multiple languages … so I can tell you first hand that they are wrong! I believe Phi Mu is an organization filled with strong women, and along with my sisters, I will continue to inspire women to defy stereotypes and accomplish their goals.
Thank you to everyone who contributes to Phi Mu Foundation and ultimately helps women just like me pursue their dreams!