Faiza Jooma, 20’s
Current Role: Private Client Relationship Analyst at Brown Advisory
What racial, ethnic, cultural community or communities do you identify with?
South Asian, Pakistani.
When and how did your family come to the United States? Where were you born?
My dad immigrated from Kuwait and my mom immigrated from Pakistan. Both immigrated to find greater opportunity and hoped to live out the American Dream. My parents met in California which is where I was born.
What are the strengths and challenges of being Asian, Asian American, and/or Pacific Islander?
Strengths: Strong ambition and motivation to succeed. Usually this is a result of wanting to make your parents' sacrifice worth it and to make them proud. This has always been my fuel and part of the reason for my ambition. There is a great sense of community within Asian and other POC groups. Shared experiences allow for a deeper connection and more support from each other - we want to help each other succeed.
Challenges: Overcoming stereotypes is a challenge, more so for some groups than others. Another challenge is the pressure to succeed. This pressure can be placed on us by other family members or by ourselves.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
Getting into the MBA program at UT Austin.
What is one thing you learned or appreciate from your family growing up?
The values I was taught including strong family values, community, humility, generosity, hard-work, etc.
Do you speak your family's native language? Why or why not?
I speak Urdu, mostly with my grandparents. In an attempt to assimilate, I wasn't diligently taught the language but I am in fluent in understanding the language and can speak it conversationally.
What advice do you have for the younger generations in our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander community?
For those who face imposter syndrome (which can be common in these communities), the biggest piece of advice I can give is fake it 'til you make it. I wholeheartedly believe in using this strategy to overcome feelings of not belonging. Fake your confidence and one day, it will feel real. Also, the way we speak to ourselves can impact the things we pursue and the risks we end up taking. If you continue to remind yourself that you are strong, that you are worthy, and that you can do whatever you put your mind to, whether you currently believe it or not, you will be more likely to pursue your dreams and have the strength to do so.
What gives you the greatest joy in life?
My family, friends, and my dog.
If you would like to share your voice as a person of color, please read the directions and fill out this form here. All ages, backgrounds, and generations welcome. Thank you!
Who are we?
Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander voices in our communities.
This is a section for AAPI specifically because, coming from our Khmer culture, we often feel invisible in various spaces from school to the media.
We want to show the ways in which we are the same and different, and that all of our backgrounds and experiences are valuable to learn and celebrate. Let's uplift each other!
Want to share your voice?
To be featured, read the directions and fill out this form. All ages, backgrounds, and generations welcome.
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