Rebecca Roman: Renaissance Woman with Political Aspirations

Name: Rebecca Roman

Year: Junior

Age: 21

Hometown: Clearwater, FL

Major: Political Science, Philosophy

Relationship Status: Single

Her Campus (HC): So, tell me all about your crazy life!

Rebecca Roman (RR): Well, I just finished up managing the on-campus Starbucks across from the FMC, I intern for a house representative, I go to school full time, and I also try to be social every once in a while.

HC: Wow, you have a lot on your plate! How did you get to be a Starbucks manager?

RR: Basically, my boss got pregnant and had to go have the baby. The position was empty and they offered it to me. So, I’ve been squeezing a full time job into 20 hours a week, just trying to get it all done. I was just asked by the President of Aramark and the head of human resources to apply to fill the Dirac position when it becomes open.

HC: Oh my gosh, it must have been crazy to just get thrown into it all!

RR: It was! I didn't get any training, and I didn’t get any help. I actually failed my first audit. But then I immediately took it and fixed everything. Within the next few days, I had the President of Aramark walk through and give me the nod of approval!

HC: See, you didn't burn the place down.

RR: I certainly came close a few times.

HC: So, tell me about the legislative internship. That sounds quite impressive.

RR: I intern for Representative Jimmy Smith. I go there 3 days a week and I do quite a bit for them. What I like most is they don’t make me their secretary. They have one up there, which is unique. So, I pretty much go to committee meetings, help write bill language for op-eds. I’m fairly involved in the whole process.

HC: That is a pretty impressive position. How did you snag it?

RR: After feeling like I was doing nothing with my life Freshman year, I decided to go out Sophomore year and join clubs (which turned into one club, because who has time for that?). I joined NEP (Noles Engaged in Politics) and got an internship through it. I regret to say I wasn’t very involved, but I got my internship and became consumed.

HC: So, are you looking into pursuing a career in politics?

RR: I’m keeping my options open. The plan right now is to go to law school. Then, who knows what opportunities will arise?

HC: So, in an ideal world, where would you end up?

RR: In an ideal world, I would apply to the law education program with the Navy, go to an incredible school, make fabulous grades, become a JAG (Judge Advocate General) officer, serve my country, eventually go into politics, and ultimately run the world.

HC: I like the confidence! You are unstoppable. How do you do it all?

RR: Well, I don’t sleep. And I work at Starbucks, so I drink a lot of coffee - which I do not recommend. I start everyday with four shots of espresso over ice.

HC: Wait, seriously?

RR: I’m dead serious. I average about eight shots a day.

HC: You’re crazy! How do you manage a social life with all of this?

RR: I prioritize. I live with one of my best friends and my other best friends come around all the time. I always feel like I’m busy, but so is everyone else.

HC: I know that you cook too. How in the world do you make time for that?

RR: I LOVE to cook. It’s how I de-stress. Cooking is my art. I’m not a super creative person but cooking is my outlet. Whenever I’m stressed, I can just cook it out.

HC: What’s an example of something you would cook?

RR: I have a few go-to’s. There’s Coq au vin, a French wine dish. It’s delicious. My real passion, my heart and soul, is Indian food. My roommate is so sick of curry. I make it at least once a week.

Seriously guys, her food is insane (@rebeccaroman on Insta)

HC: You sound so interested in so many different things. What are you most passionate about?

RR: I’m passionate about serving people. I’m passionate about leadership. I’m passionate about women and their advancement from a conservative standpoint.

HC: Oh? Elaborate.

RR: This is something I have thought about my whole life. As an Independent Conservative woman in the public sector, I don’t think that the government needs to intervene on behalf of women. This isn't a governmental problem, it’s a social problem. It’s a cultural problem. Women are socialized into thinking certain things about themselves. I actually had a problem when I first got promoted. I wasn't being paid what a supervisor should be paid, they said they had to pay me a dollar less. And I was just thankful for the job to begin with and just took it. But, now I’m actually getting retro-paid because I finally stood up for myself and said that I deserve to be paid what every supervisor gets paid. When I first got this managerial position, I had to negotiate my pay for the first time. What I realized is that we women sometimes simply take what we are handed, whereas men are statistically more inclined to ask for the things they know they deserve. As a woman, it’s not always in my nature to be demanding. I’m thankful, but I need to realize that I work hard and should be compensated accordingly. It’s hard though, because when you don’t see people like you in a certain position, you don’t see yourself there. It’s up to us, as a society, to change that.

HC: Do you hope to be that role model for young women?

RR: I hope I am able to live my life in a way that is seen as that. All I can do is serve to the best of my ability in everything that I do. I would love to live a life so that others are inspired. But, that’s all on me to achieve.

HC: Do you have a positive female role model in your life that has empowered you to feel so strong and independent?

RR: Actually, its surprising. I mean, my mom is an amazing woman and an incredible role model, but it’s really my dad. Nothing against cheerleaders— this is just my dad, he’s a bodybuilding lawyer, you never know what’s going to come out of his mouth—but, I remember that my sister and I wanted to cheerlead when we were younger and my dad said “I never want you on the sidelines, I want you on the field. I want people cheering for you.” He instilled in me this independence and self-motivation.

HC: So you’re totally a Daddy’s girl.

RR: I’m both! My mom and I are best friends but my dad has had a tremendous impact on my life. He has made me question everything so that I don’t have any beliefs that I don’t have a reason for believing.

HC: Do YOU have any advice for young college women trying to make it in politics, or simply assert themselves in life?

RR: Well, I’m no expert, but I’m pretty happy with where I am at 21. So, all I can say is stay focused and watch what motivates you. Stay humble and stay focused.

HC: Watch what motivates you?

RR: For instance, in politics, you can just tell who is motivated by self-interest and who is internally motivated. When I first worked at Starbucks, I wasn't motivated by thinking “I want to run the company”, I was motivated by thinking “I want to do this as well as I possibly can.” It’s important to not be motivated by external benefits, but instead by wanting to be the best that you can be.