30 Mar Where Are They Now
By: Emily Mertz
As a current law student at the University of Iowa, Emily Mertz credits DPhiE for providing her valuable professional development opportunities and helping her to find her lifelong passion. As her chapters Member at Large and an International Leadership Consultant on staff at IHQ, Emily learned professional skills that she uses everyday in her career.
Emily shared, “With a career in law, you always have to be thinking on your feet. During my time as an ILC I learned adaptability and professional communication skills – both of which I use daily. Those are skills you don’t typically learn in college but as an ILC I had to be able to resolve problems on short notice and communicate the solutions properly.” Throughout the year as an ILC she learned about herself, her leadership style, and her communication style.
As the Member at Large for her chapter, she oversaw the standards board process. Learning organizational and mediation skills throughout the year. When interviewing for law school, she spoke highly of the experience she gained from DPhiE and how it helped her pinpoint her passion for justice.
Throughout her various involvements, her biggest takeaway from DPhiE was the opportunity to lobby on Capitol Hill. This was an opportunity to advocate in favor of legislation important to DPhiE, share updates about her campus experience with Senators, and network with undergraduate and alumnae fraternity/sorority life members. Reflecting on this opportunity she shared, “It’s a really unique experience and you get to meet sisters from all over the country! At the end of the day you channel your communication skills from talking with people one on one – while advocating can be applicable to many different careers, a political career does not have to be your end goal to participate.”
After a day long training, the program pairs you up with fraternity/sorority life members from your region. For 15 minutes you speak with political representatives from your region to pitch your platform. Emily shared, “The meetings are quick, sometimes you’re even walking down the hallway meeting with senators.” You also get to connect with DPhiE sisters and volunteers from across the country. “We (DPhiE sisters) all met for group meals and everyone got really close – it was a great experience to work with sisters from completely different backgrounds.”
Emily is currently a law student at the University of Iowa, a volunteer intern for the Lavender Legal Center (a center that provides direct representation, advocacy, and referrals for LGTBQ youth), and a Research Assistant at her university! The skills she learned from Delta Phi Epsilon across her various involvements has provided her the skills to thrive.
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