Hina (Rizvi) Vingola ’07

    Hina (Rizvi) Vingola ’07

    Current job title and employer and briefly describe what it is you do: Coordination of Interpretation and Translation Services, Association of Africans Living in Vermont.

    In a few sentences, tell us about yourself: I am originally from Pakistan. I moved to the United States at the age of 18 with my sister. Having traveled and lived in many places has helped me to appreciate different cultures, customs, food, and perspectives. We all might have different backgrounds, but humanity ties us all together. In my work life, I have worked in the mental health sector, senior healthcare industry and now have been working in a non-profit sector for the last four years. I am the mother of two young children and celebrate living in a multi-racial, multicultural and trilingual household.

    Please tell us about your Saint Michael’s experience: I will always have a special place for my advisor, my professors and the life long friends I made at Saint Michael’s College. Being a non-traditional and non-native English student, I was able to reach out to them for support and advice. A liberal arts college helped me to become a well rounded person. I very much enjoyed working as a resident assistant on campus, appreciated attending MOVE extended service trips, and studying abroad in Europe.

    What advice would you give to women students: You are more than a gender, appreciate and accept who you are. Follow your dreams, make mistakes and learn from them. Travel and meet different people. Escape the social structures if they prevent you from achieving your goals and dreams whenever you have the opportunity.

    What are some strategies that can help women achieve a more prominent role in their organizations: Find your strengths and passion. Be open to learning new skills and stay open to feedback. Find mentors in the field and organization, collaborate and network.

    What keeps you motivated and driven on a daily basis: Being a mom keeps me motivated and driven. As I look for mentors for my own self-growth, I too want to be a mentor for my children and others. I encourage myself everyday to become a better version of myself.

    What woman most inspires you and why: Many women have been the source of strength and wisdom in my life thus far, without them I would not have become the person I am today. The strongest women I have met thus far are the mothers, who are out there working hard in their careers, up with their babies at night, cheering at their kids’ soccer games during the day, running households and continuing to go on tirelessly. Mothers’ unconditional love is an inspiration.

    Young activists such a Greta Thunberg and Malala Yousafzai gives me hope for a better world.