Student Spotlight: Komal Kamdar
Major: Batten (Leadership & Public Policy) & Spanish
Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA
1. What brought you to the Women's Center?
My first semester at UVA, my COLA was centered around Stories of Social Change, where we learned about issues hindering women’s advancement internationally. I remember asking my professor about how I could get involved on Grounds with sexual assault awareness and intervention, an issue of great personal importance. She suggested the Women’s Center, which instantly felt like a positive space and like a home the first time I walked in, soon introducing me to the strong, empowering women who have taught me so much.
2. What other organizations are you involved with at UVA?
In addition to being the Senior Intern for the Gender Violence and Social Change team, my main other involvement is being a member of Alpha Phi Omega, the national gender-inclusive service fraternity. We partner with over fifty organizations in the surrounding Charlottesville and Albemarle region, respectfully engaging in the community as a mindful public servant and getting to know community members better through one-on-one interactions. It’s a great way to get out of the UVA bubble, and it’s also become my home here at UVA, as it’s an incredibly supportive and tightknit community where I’ve had the opportunity to make friends through service.
3. If you could describe your intern team in 3 words, what would they be?
Brave, uplifting, empathetic
4. What is your favorite memory of UVA thus far?
I will never forget winning the night of the NCAA National Championship. I watched at JPJ with my best friends, and the atmosphere was absolutely crazy. The school spirit was through the roof, from storming the Corner after the win, to the celebration on the Lawn that lasted until the early hours of the morning. I have never felt prouder to be a part of the Cavalier community.
5. What does leadership mean to you?
Leadership is about listening to others, making sure no voice in a group goes unheard, and empowering the group as a whole. Being a leader does not necessarily mean being the loudest voice in the group, but can mean leading by example. A true leader should be able to improve and inspire others to take action.
6. What is your guilty pleasure?
Any and all things food-related, from the Great British Baking Show to Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.