VIH Podcast

Thanks for tuning into the VIH Women in Global Leadership Podcast!

The Vira I. Heinz Women in Global Leadership podcast is a media outlet that gives current and alumni Vira’s the opportunity to express how the program has shaped their leadership, mentorship skills, enhance global understanding, and think globally while acting locally through community service. This audio recorded series hopes to enlighten, encourage and educate women on a variety of topics that are explored during program such as language, preparational skills for an  international experiences, constructive criticism, and working in groups.

A Vira’s journey is unique; not only do they discuss their first international experience but also  share their internal growth that occurs during the spring and fall retreats. Through a Vira’s journey, each individual gains a sense of self, confidence, and cultural understanding. This podcast is a resource for current and past cohorts to reconnect with Vira’s that may share similar interests and/or have explored the same country. 

Every Vira has a story to share and this is the platform to showcase them!

 

About the Host: 

Natalie Vazquez, a Chatham University alumna and member of the 2011 cohort interviews with special guest from the VIH alumni community. In 2014, Natalie completed her Masters of Fine Arts in Film and Digital Technology at Chatham University. She now uses her experience in video production to produce podcasts that highlight women in global leadership within the VIH program. When she’s not hosting an episode, Natalie takes on the role as Video Production Specialist and Multimedia Designer for the IDEA Lab within for the Institute for Clinical Research at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Natalie's passion for international exploration all began when she ventured to Alicante, Spain through the VIH Program back in 2011. During her time in Spain, she attended the Universitat d’Alacant where she improved her Spanish speaking skills and practiced flamenco dancing. Since her VIH experience, she's had the opportunity to explore Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, Puerto Rico and Italy. Upon returning to the states from Italy, Natalie had the desire to reconnect with the VIH community with the hopes to inspire and learn through other Vira experiences.

 

Ep. 1: Taking the Leap

In this episode, Natalie had the pleasure of speaking with Temple University’s Katrina Harrison, Marko Forkpa, and Annie Kim from the 2014 cohort. This recording goes down in history as the beginning of this series of VIH episodes! 

These three Vira’s have stayed in contact with each other since the start of their VIH journey - they’ve also completed their Community Engagement Experience together and to this day are supporting one another as they step closer to their life goals. The buzz topics within this conversation include cohort teamwork, mentorship and how one’s international experience connects with their present and near future endeavors.

Need a dose of inspiration? You can count on these viras for advice!

 

Ep. 2: Laying the Foundation

Two words - Reunion and Mentorship! Yes, you heard right, VIH just had their first 10 year reunion in June. Following the reunion, Natalie had the pleasure of speaking with Pitt-Greensburg Vira’s, Bathany Hallam (2013), Nichole Johnson (2016) and Andrea Hartman (2018).

 In this episode, Laying the Foundation, we discuss everything mentorship. From campus coordinators to cultural coaches, these three Vira’s know the lay of the land when it comes to pre departure preparation and the importance of action plans and goals. Although plans may not go as expected, you’ll hear how these Vira’s conquered unpredictable events.

If you haven’t been a mentor lately, be prepared to get a second wind of encouragement and a few tips!

 

Ep. 3: Holding Each Other Accountable

In this episode, we hear from three Pitt Bradford facilitators. Our special guests include Akire Hoots (2017), Nicki Kellogg (2013) and Antonell Robinson (2018).

These three have a unique bond, as they have known each other for quite some time now and share their passion for facilitating at the spring and fall retreats. They each share their views on how VIH is a learning community, especially during the spring and fall retreats. At the retreats, many Vira’s experience the “growing pains” of constructive criticism and finding their voice. As many of the VIH alumni know, the retreats help enhance the role of language and shift the way particular words might be used.

So, grab a coffee or tea, whatever you prefer and listen in closely. Let’s hear how you can learn more about yourself through others!