30 in 30 Presents: Fiama Gaitan (Week 3)


Fiama Gaitan 30in30
Fiama Gaitan

BA, Sociology, UIC 2014

Current Job
Natatorium Instructor, Chicago Park District

On finding sociology
Like many other alums, Fiama started out with another major, in biology, which she left after taking a Sociology 100 course. It was SOC 100 that sparked her love and passion for sociology.

What Fiama loves about sociology
Sociology made Fiama look at the world from a different perspective. What she loves the most is that it helps her see situations from various points of view. She can always question a situation using her sociological knowledge. Fiama also thinks sociology is important because it reflects our society, which is always changing!

How faculty influenced Fiama
All of the faculty members Fiama took classes with were very involved with the students in their courses. Not only did they help her with courses, they pushed students to engage with one another in order to create connections and network on campus. Because of the efforts from the faculty in the sociology department, Fiama’s perception of what can happen in classrooms changed.

Bringing sociology to work
Fiama works for the Chicago Park District as a swimming instructor. She began working for the Chicago Park District at the age of 16 and began to move her way up throughout her undergraduate career. Although sociology does not directly connect to her job, she has found ways to use the skills she acquired as a sociology major to help her be successful. For instance, Fiama explains how the courses on gender and culture she took at UIC inform her understanding and appreciation of the many types of people she meets every day.

Interviewed by Itzayana Alvarado


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