Aditya Gorantala, who prefers to be called Aadi, is a full-time MBA student at Mays Business School, Texas A&M University. He currently works as a Partner Compliance Analyst Intern from the VMware Austin, Texas office.
One of the most important lessons I learned in business school is to work at a place where your personal values resonate. I grew up learning to give back to those who haven’t been lucky. Helping others gives an instant dose of contentment and empowerment to your daily life. Beginning at VMware, I presumed that I would have limited opportunities to volunteer due to the length of my summer internship.
Instead, I discovered that through the VMware Foundation full-time employees and interns alike can spend 40 service learning hours in their communities. The choice of charity is completely up to the individual. This excited me, and I began to search for volunteer opportunities. Then, a surprise was in store – one of my fellow interns suggested a day at the Austin Animal Center caring for the dogs and cats.
I was scared of pets back in my home country of India, so it took awhile before I decided to sign up. As the day arrived and the group of 10 VMware employees met at the Center, I challenged myself to overcome my fear of these four-legged wonders. We walked countless dogs that otherwise would be stuck in the kennel during the humid Austin afternoon. In no time, I was comfortable with my newfound, furry friends.
Looking back, did I make a change to the community? The number of people thanking us as we left the Austin Animal Center made it understood that our contribution was substantial. It’s true that a little help goes a long way.
It’s a matter of perspective — the benefit to me was learning something new. In providing service for others, I conquered my fear, networked with new friends, and obtained a greater understanding of the problems in our community and how I could give back. Above all, it was fun.
I can’t believe I am paid to do this, and more. This realization is a big deal because, for once, I have found a place where my personal values align with the business’s values. That place is VMware!
— Aadi Gorantala
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