Get To Know Connect’s Office Assistant
My name is Valerie Reyes and I joined Connect as an Office Assistant in January of 2021. I majored in Media Communications at the Angeles University Foundation and am currently pursuing another degree in Business Management. By continuing my education, I aim to enhance my skills and knowledge in business functions and operations.
Born and raised in the Philippines, I grew up with Filipino core values such as resilience, optimism, hospitality and adaptability. Moreover, I have always had amazing examples around me of hard work and industriousness. One of my important highlights as a Filipino is the importance of togetherness. It is a significant part of our culture which refers to community, or not doing things alone. From my point of view, teamwork has been ingrained into the culture over the years.
When I moved to San Diego in 2018, it was immediately apparent why San Diego is one of the best places in the United States. San Diego is becoming increasingly multicultural, which makes it one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse cities in the nation. Being an immigrant is not easy, the challenges and adjustments you face as a stranger in a new land. However, there is a comfort in knowing that San Diego is plentiful in different cultures and it helped eradicate any personal biases or negative conventionalized ideas that were lurking. Furthermore, diversity is what drives creativity and innovation in our region.
I started my career in the hospitality industry when I moved to San Diego. To my own misfortune, I was one of the millions that lost their jobs during the pandemic because of how severely impacted the hotel industry became financially. Being the resilient person that I am, I decided to use the time that I was gifted to study Business Management. I wanted to create a successful career path for myself and this was my next step.
During the peak of COVID, it proved to be difficult to land a job. After hundreds of applications and interview processes – a job opportunity at Connect was sent my way. Although I did not have direct experience with innovation and entrepreneurship, Connect was not fazed and took the risk by giving me the opportunity to learn about the industry. I enjoy the assortment of different tasks that are thrown my way and it is truly gratifying to provide the support our organization needs. I enjoy the responsibility of being the key person that ensures that the office is running smoothly. I have also gotten the opportunity to work within event planning for Connect’s office hours. I relish in the unpredictability that the job brings, no days are the same and it’s always something new. I genuinely love doing what I do because it allows my technical skills to develop and my creativity to flourish by learning a little bit of everything.
Lemon Cookies by Val
Burnt Cheesecake by Val
Tuna Onigiri by Val
One of the ways I spend my free time is by exploring different cuisines. It adds a new excitement to my life and lets me experience other people’s culture. Food is a big part of my heritage and that’s why I love to cook. It is one of my favorite things to do as it allows me to introduce my culture to other people and it is also one way of preserving it. In addition to cooking, I often find my escape through music, reading, and watching movies.
I am not afraid of coloring outside my lines and I am always ready to take on new challenges. I look forward to growing and becoming an integral part of Connect. My goal is to become an expert in the industry with the ability to help entrepreneurs move their business forward as well as train and mentor employees who are starting just like me.
Valerie is Connect’s Office Assistant, she has been instrumental towards ensuring our operations and office hours run smoothly.