Meet Rianda Wenther: Our February Leading Woman
Name: Rianda Wenther
Major: Political Science and Political Communication with a minor in Spanish
Hometown: Blue Springs, MO
What are your career goals?
After I graduate in three years, I plan to continue working on campaigns. After spending some time doing that, I eventually would like to become a campaign manager. I’ve also thrown around the idea of working as a speechwriter, and even the idea of running for office myself. My ultimate dream job is White House Chief of Staff! All I know is that I want to work directly in politics!
What are you involved in at Mizzou?
Apart from being a member of Kappa Alpha Theta, I currently serve on the Student Organizations, Governments, and Activities Committee of the Missouri Student’s Association, and I am a member of Mizzou Student Rights Advisers. I really look forward to increasing my involvement here at Mizzou over the next 3 years. There are so many amazing opportunities within Theta and organizations around campus that I am excited to get involved in!
What campaigns have you work for and when?
This past summer I worked as a Campaign Assistant on the Jalen Anderson for Jackson County Legislature 1st District At-Large campaign! I also just recently started helping with the Amara Enyia mayoral campaign in Chicago! A friend of mine is a field-organizer for Amara’s campaign and I have been helping as much as I can here at Mizzou.
What have you learned from your experiences?
I learned so much throughout the time I spent working as a campaign assistant last summer, more than I ever thought I would! Before this experience, I knew I wanted work in politics, and after working on the campaign I had such an amazing time it helped solidify that I do want to pursue a career in politics. As I was working on the campaign, I was also working 40+ hours at my two other jobs so I’d have to say my work ethic and time management skills grew immensely. My biggest take away from the whole experience is that it’s very important to be open-minded and listen to other people’s opinions, and this doesn’t just apply to politics. You can’t expect to grow as a person without keeping an open mind and taking in new information and opinions from the people you meet and surround yourself with! I encourage all of my Theta sisters and everyone else to volunteer on a campaign at least once, whether it’s a local campaign within your city or it’s on a national scale. It is such an eye-opening experience, one that everyone should experience at least once in their life.
Tell us about why you chose your major?
I chose to double major in Political Science and Political Communication because I have always had a strong passion and interest in politics. My goal is to work in politics one way or another, so by the time I graduate, these two majors will have equipped me with the experience and knowledge needed to accomplish my career goals.
What are you passionate about?
If you know me, you know that I’m passionate about a lot of things. I have a passion for politics along with helping others and serving my community, and my future career goals definitely stem from that. Social justice, education reform, poverty, and special education are just a few from my list and one of my biggest passions is women empowerment.
What does Theta mean to you?
To me, Theta means being constantly surrounded by other driven and hard-working women who will support and empower you through everything. You will be pushed to be the best you can be, and everyone genuinely wants to see you succeed and will always be by your side. My Theta sisters are the definition of leading women and I look up to everyone single one of them.
Do you have a specific favorite Theta memory?
It’s a tie between two! The first is when I found out that my Pi Chi during recruitment (Hailey Markt) is a Theta. Right after that I received my bid to run home and I got to celebrate with her! I genuinely could not have survived recruitment without her and now having her as a sister and friend is such a blessing! My other favorite memory is big/little reveal this year! Running into the arms of my big was such a happy & memorable moment, and I could not ask for a more amazing and supportive pledge family.
What do you do in your free time?
When I do have free time, I enjoy spending it with friends and family, my 5 pets, running, and reading (I’m a sucker for juicy, political memoirs). I’m also obsessed with coffee thanks to the year I spent working at Starbucks, so I love exploring new coffee shops and seeing what they have to offer!