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Life and Work with Cindy Makita

Today we’d like to introduce you to Cindy Makita.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Cindy. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, and my family is from the Democratic Republic of Congo. After a rough start to life having undergone chemotherapy and a bone-marrow transplant at aged 5, I knew that God has a bigger plan for my life and that my purpose surrounded empowering women and girls. And that is what I did. From working with orphan girls in Johannesburg as a teen, to being the president of the US National Committee for UN Women Club at Florida International University (FIU) during my college career, to now being the Ambassador for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal #5 in Miami under the Social Impact Movement, and a Board member of UNA- Miami, I continue to be aligned with my passion and purpose to empower women and girls globally. I stand firm to the belief that I cannot claim myself as being free if millions of women and girls around the world are not. Through my work with SIM and UNA, I strive to raise awareness for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (particularly how we can empower women and girls and how their contributions make a big impact on society), but also to make people aware of the issues that women in our city of Miami face, as well as globally.

After graduating from FIU in 2018, I went on to work as an Analyst for an asset & wealth management company in Brickell called KORE Consulting where I am growing as a young professional (or “corporate millennial”), and my love for the city of Miami has grown immensely. My dream is for Miami to be at the forefront of sustainable metropolitan cities, and for women within this city to have equal opportunities to rise to success and live freely.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Undeniably, no road to success is easy. Moving from South Africa to the US required me to take a leap of faith into the unknown, and finding my “fit” in college took time. I struggled to find a place of belonging, I struggled with knowing exactly what I wanted to major in, and I struggled with the weight of expectation on my shoulders that I held on myself because my parents sacrificed a great deal to send me to school and I owed it to them to make them proud. But nevertheless, I succeeded. I found my “tribe,” I landed on an organization that I knew was aligned with my purpose of empowering women, I graduated Magna Cum Laude with the highest recognition at graduation, and I used what made me different as a distinguishing factor and not a limiting factor.

When I graduated from college, I took a risk in working for a small company instead of a larger organization that had always been my dream (and the route that most people encouraged I take). Despite receiving many “no’s” when applying for jobs after graduation, I held on to the hope that the right door was going to open and it was going to be exactly where I was meant to be. And it did.

Another struggle I faced in the workplace was being the only black woman in many spaces I found myself in. At times, I would feel discouraged like I didn’t belong, and I thought that people were always judging me because I didn’t “fit.” Again, I had to shift my mindset and see what others might deem a limiting factor, to my benefit. I now proudly enjoy being a representative of other black and brown women and girls and hope I can inspire others to know that WE DO BELONG.

A word of advice I would give to young women starting their journey is that you do not have to have it all figured out (most people do not even if they seem like they do). Life is a journey, not a destination (you never fully arrive) so enjoy the journey, embrace every hardship and trial as a stepping stone to success (think- building blocks), and surround yourself with like-minded individuals who are striving to succeed just as you are (you are the sum total of the five people you spend the most time with). And lastly, ALWAYS pursue knowledge.

Please tell us about your work.
I work as an analyst at KORE Consulting.
I am a Millennial Career Coach (my platform: The CG- Your Career Guide) and I help college students, recent graduates and young professionals land their dream careers and excel professionally.
I am on the Board of UNA- Miami (the United Nations Association Miami Chapter).
Ambassador for Sustainable Development Goal #5 for Gender Equality in Miami.

You could say I wear multiple hats. 🙂

What advice would you give to someone at the start of her career?
TAKE A RISK. Now is the best time to take a risk in your career. Don’t settle for the status quo. Go beyond your comfort zone, seek new and challenging opportunities, step into the unknown, build something for yourself, work for a start-up!… the list of possibilities is endless.

When you take a risk, there are two possible outcomes: Either you fail and learn, or you succeed. Both outcomes leave you better off than if you had not tried.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Provence Photography, Margi Rentis

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