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Humor, Heels, and Harper’s Bazaar: Meet Nilam Patel

Do you remember the person you saw everywhere when you first arrived at Wake as an overwhelmed freshman? The person who was at every information session during orientation and seemed to have a spot at every booth in the infamous activities fair? For me, that person was Nilam Patel.

Nilam is the most enthusiastic, energetic person I have met at Wake Forest and is truly involved in everything. She is a junior history major with a minor in entrepreneurship from the beautiful town of Roanoke, V.A.
Nilam is writing her thesis this semester on the effects of fashion advertising on women. She is specifically researching how advertising affected women’s confidence, sexuality, and overall attitude from 1900 to 1930.
 “I’m very excited about it because I get to look through issues of Vogue, Vanity Fair, Harper’s Bazaar and several other magazines and catalogues since they count as primary sources,” said Nilam.
Her passion for fashion is apparent from any outsider’s perspective. She has an amazing array of brightly colored dresses, scarves and, of course, shoes. This fashionista is always dressed to the nines.
“I do not own a single pair of jeans but I have over ninety-five dresses and fifty shoes. I love to play ‘dress-up’ — it’s also a great procrastination method!” Perhaps Nilam’s fashion inspiration comes from her “crazy definitely-not-going-to-happen dream job.” She would love to have a power position in fashion like Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour.
“She is such an intelligent woman; she single-handedly has the power to make or break a designer’s career, and while she may seem ‘cold’ at times, I think you need to be in such an industry.”
Nilam is always in heels to make up for her petit stature. Her shoes are to die for, with pairs spanning all of her favorite designers, especially Kate Spade and J.Crew.

“Wearing a pair of fabulous shoes gives me a boost of confidence,” says Nilam. “It seems silly, but I just feel like I can accomplish anything I want to when I wear them.”
Those Kate Spade heels must really be inspirational because I have never met a busier person than Nilam.
If there were an award for “most-involved-with-extra-curricular-activities,” Nilam would win hands-down. To list everything she has been involved with at Wake would take quite a while. The short list? Her main involvement includes being the Chief of Staff of Student Government, an executive member of The QUAD, President’s Aide, Ambassador-in-Admissions, student representative to numerous committees in the Campus Life department, and various editorial positions with the Old Gold & Black.
“I love, love, love Student Government. I don’t know what I would do without this organization.” Nilam appreciates all of the great friends and opportunities this organization has offered to her.

Scheduling an interview with Nilam proved to be nearly impossible. She never has down time and is constantly busy from the second she wakes up until the second she falls asleep.
“I try really hard to manage my time well so I can sleep, but I will be one hundred percent honest with you – I probably have the most fomo (‘fear of missing out’) out of anyone that you have ever met.”
Her typical day consists of classes, endless meetings, obsessively checking her email, and lunch in the Mag Room with her friends – the best part of her day.
So how does she deal with the stress of from being involved with so many organizations in addition to Work Forest’s work load? The answer is simple – humor.
“I read somewhere that you are the prettiest when you laugh, so my goal is always to laugh more than I cry, to laugh more than I get angry, and to laugh more than I get upset.”
So the next time you are feeling overwhelmed, multiply your workload by sixteen and think of Nilam. Rumor has it that she has even been seen brushing her teeth while walking to class – anything is possible.

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