Published on October 7th, 2014 | by editor0
Get to Know … Wright Alumna Sendy Soto
Sendy Soto is a Wright College alumna who graduated in 2002 and now works as the District Director for the Office of U.S. Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL-08). Sendy’s journey took her from her native Guatemala to Chicago’s Logan Square, and eventually, to the United States Congress.
Q: Where are you from and why did you decide to attend Wright College?
A: I was born in Guatemala, and my family and I moved to Logan Square when we moved to Chicago. We then moved to Albany Park, where I still reside. When I thought about going to Wright College, I really didn’t know what I was doing. All I knew is that a lot of my friends took that leap and so I figured I should give it a try. My family couldn’t quite guide me in this process, since their image of the road to success was working long hours and not spending much time in school. But I still attended, and Wright College was affordable for me.
Q: What were your impressions of Wright College, the classes, the professors and your schedule? Were you balancing a job and school at the same time?
A: I absolutely enjoyed my time at Wright College. I found a compassionate career counselor who really understood my challenges growing up and seeking a better life for myself. If it wasn’t for her, I would have not been able to motivate myself to complete my associate degree. I also developed a passion for photography there. Overall, the environment that Wright College provided for me felt safe and inspiring. My schedule was easy to manage even though I worked full-time. I was able to finish in a timely manner.
Q: What was your next step after Wright College?
A: I didn’t see the need to continue my education at the time, so I continued working. It wasn’t until four years later that I became inspired to pursue a career in social justice. I finally knew what I wanted to major in and found Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU) to be the most affordable school to attend that was designed for commuters. Like I did at Wright, I enjoyed my time at NEIU. The professors were just as personable and also possessed an infinite amount of knowledge.
Q: How did you find your first career after college? How has your career grown since?
A: At NEIU I heard Senator Dick Durbin speak about his work in immigration and domestic violence. My interest in his work led me to meet his staff and stay in touch with them well after graduation. One day, his Chief of Staff mentioned they were hiring and quickly I submitted my resume. I worked for Sen. Durbin close to four years. After my time at Sen. Durbin’s office, I moved on to the Office of the Governor. Now, I am the District Director of the Office of Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL-08). In my current role, I help make sure district staff execute the Congresswoman’s outreach strategies, manage constituent services, foster working relationships with stakeholders, and uphold the Congresswoman’s legislative priorities.
Q: Do you have any advice for incoming students at CCC?
A: Education might not get you the dream job right away, but it will absolutely open your eyes to the complex world that we live in. Keep an open mind to subjects that might not be so interesting from the start!
CCC and Wright College gave Sendy her start in higher education and we look forward to seeing her excel in her future endeavors!