September 19, 2017
Each month WISA will showcase individuals on the WISA Leadership Team to allow members to get to know the women in executive positions in both a personal and professional capacity.
This spotlight will focus on Delia Hom, the Region I Representative. Delia works full time as the Director of the Asian American Center at Northeastern University.
Who has been the most influential in the development of your career? Why?
My first boss, Joe Virata, was the one who took a chance on me and introduced me to the field of Student Affairs. He helped me craft my own vision of ways of supporting students that was holistic and also rooted in a deep love for community and creating change.
When you wake up in the morning, and you’re mentally preparing yourself for another day at work, what excites you the most?
I get excited by the opportunity to be creative - whether this is in big ways or small. I am a firm believer that everything about our work should be in a constant state of evolution. I am fortunate enough to work with extremely creative, energetic, and passionate students and staff, and they help to challenge and inspire me.
What is your long-term career goal? At what point will you feel like you’ve “made it,” so-to-speak?
My long-term career goal is to continue to feel a calling to my work. I love what I do, and my goal is to always feel this way about my work. My career is sort of ancillary to this - I'm not sure what it would mean to "make it" or to "arrive" because everything about me, our world, and our students are constantly changing.
What advice would you give to someone aspiring to move into a position similar to yours?
I would encourage anyone aspiring to be in a position like mine to think deeply about why they hope to serve in this kind of role and to make choices that are congruent with their values, and what they see as the values of our work.
How has your experience in your role been impacted by identifying as a woman?
This is a really hard question for me to answer - my identity as a woman is intertwined with my identity as a third generation Asian American, a parent, a supervisor, a mentor, an advisor, a colleague, a friend, etc. etc. etc. I think there are many structural levels at which my experience has been impacted (salary, family leave) by my identity as a woman. I also know that I relate a lot to all of the things floating around social media about “mansplaining.” However, I also know that my experiences with patriarchy have pushed me to think deeply about my work, my values, and re-evaluate the ways in which we think about concepts like knowledge, success, and productivity. It has also made me very exhausted.
We hope you've enjoyed getting to know more about Delia! If you have a question for Delia regarding anything she mentioned above or her role on the WISA Leadership Team, please contact her directly at [email protected]
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