How does it feel to tell a potential job that, no, you can’t
make it to an in-person interview because you currently live out of a suitcase
and are 3,000 miles away? How does it feel to have a favorite breakfast joint
at the good ole’ Chicago O’Hare International Airport? How does it feel to say
you’ve tried 32 university’s “BEST. PIZZA. EVER!?”
It’s quite odd. Well, odd isn’t the word. It’s quite … once in
a lifetime. The Leadership Consultant experience is unlike any first-year job
you can acquire. You’re fresh out of your active years as a Kappa — full of
date parties, Homecoming, and late-night movie-watch parties at the chapter
house. All of a sudden, things like “full-time job” and “insurance” and
“retirement funds” start popping into conversations with your parents, teachers
and even friends. Cue emotional freak out.
Maybe you want to try life in a suitcase. Maybe you feel
you’ve got much more to give to our incredible sisterhood. Maybe you’ve met a
Leadership Consultant in the past who taught you a lot about life and you want
to see just how she did it. For me, it was all of the above as well as an
untamable desire to simply do something crazy.
Fast forward 15 months, 39,876 miles, 28 states and a few
too many wears of a jean jacket and here I sit in the real world with a real
closet and an actual city to call home. I now understand that serving as a
Leadership Consultant for Kappa Kappa Gamma was the best real-world training I
could have asked for. Yes, others will
call you a full-time sorority girl and you may get sick of Recruitment by your
eighth school, but learning to handle 10 reports at a time, manage a corporate
credit card, and work with just about any personality you could possibly
imagine gives you the skills, knowledge, and most of all, flexibility to take
on the real world with grace, charm and the Kappa class we all so dearly love.
Why apply to be a Leadership Consultant? Because as your
friends jump into 9–5 desk jobs, you take weekend trips to Boston and then
spend a week at a beautiful New England school. You learn about their culture
and problem-solve some of life’s biggest issues. In the end, you become more of
an adult and leader than you ever thought you could be. As you make a year-long
transition into the real world, you learn what it means to be an independent
adult and what it is like to work with a variety of personalities. Juggling new
names, issues and reports weekly — yes, that is what we’re doing as we type away
furiously after your meeting — is challenging, stressful and requires a lot
more attention than any Chapter Council position or campus leadership role I
took on in my college years. But in the end, a joyous Bid Day, successful Initiation
or even — dare I say it — smooth election process and the Kappa pride that
comes with it allows you to see our organization in a whole new light. Your
purpose as a leader in the real world is validated. The free campus food,
airplane miles and incredible Instagram follower gain are just added perks.
Another thing that a lot of Kappa’s don’t realize? You’ve
got a team behind you that is there when you break down at 4 a.m. over broken
clickers or when you just really need a Galentine’s Day weekend in Denver. My
teammates are my best friends and you better bet we are scraping by through the
real world together.
This is all to say that if you have ever had an interest in
communication, leadership, trying new foods, problem-solving, higher education,
team-building, sprinting through airports, Kappa Kappa Gamma, seeing the United
States and Canada, or truly learning what it means to trim down your closet,
serving as a Leadership Consultant could be the perfect fit for you. By the
2016 General Convention, each member of the 2015–2016 Leadership Consultant Team
was either employed full-time or headed to graduate school. Most importantly, we
had each grown enormously in our presentation, people, and crisis-management skills.
This job is an asset that I use daily in the real world. Ask
the teacher, the law student, the filmmaker, the recruiter or any of the other
positions that my incredible team ended up in and they will tell you the same. If
you have the energy, curiosity and go-get-‘em attitude to see the world in just
a wee-bit bigger way, I highly encourage you to take the chance and apply! Life
will be there when it’s over. The chance to gain a lifetime of experience in
just 10 crazy, sleepless and ultra-amazing months will not.
||Carly Wooldridge, Missouri, was a 2015–2016 Leadership Consultant. Interested in joining our Field Representative team? Find out more by visiting www.kappa.org/field_representatives today!