Staff Spotlight: Adrianna Sotelo
Accounting & Finance Coordinator
Today’s millennials often struggle to define themselves within an ever-changing social paradigm. Not so for Adrianna Sotelo. Born near Midland-Odessa, Sotelo is small-town girl with an infectious laugh and a smile as big as Texas. Raised by a single parent, Sotelo learned valuable life lessons during her childhood. She attributes her independent personality and strong belief system to her mother who worked while getting her degree and raising three kids. Later in life, when Sotelo herself became a young mom, her mother’s perseverance served as a model of how to succeed.
In 2015, Sotelo graduated from Texas Tech University with a BA in History and minor in Political Science. Her initial plan was to become a teacher. Seeing the changes in the teaching profession led her to pursue other avenues. Up until her last semester, she was a double minor in Political Science and American Sign Language and for a brief time she even considered interpreter school. It was during this last semester that she began working two jobs- one with the Office of International Affairs (OIA) and the other with a local hospital. This first role with the OIA as a student assistant quickly transitioned into a full-time position with reception, facilities and events. Sotelo’s outgoing personality quickly made her a favorite among incoming students, clients, and office staff. Her ability to easily develop skills and adapt to a variety of environments soon led to a promotion landing her in the current role of Accounting and Finance Coordinator. Happy with the path that OIA has led her down, she has officially made Lubbock home. (She recently purchased her first house.) Adrianna Sotelo is a mature millennial woman determined to make a mark on the world.
What is the most difficult thing about being a single parent?
I would say balancing everything. When I first started working in the main office at OIA, I was working two jobs at sixty hours a week. Though it was difficult, I think it helped me learn to manage my time wisely. As a single parent, balancing time between work, school, and family can be a real challenge. Luckily, I have a great support system in place and that has been very helpful. Growing up, I learned from my mom that you have to be willing to work hard, you have to be accountable, and you have to stand your ground as a parent. Not many people my age have those values or that type of work ethic and I am thankful for my mom’s example.
In addition to my personal support system, I also have a strong support system here at the OIA. My boss is easy to work with and is great at finding teachable moments to help me learn something new about my job. She is very supportive and flexible if I need to leave work to be with my son or if he is sick. As independent as I think I am, having these two support systems in place has also made me realize that it is okay to ask for help when you need it.
How has working with the Office of International Affairs helped you grow professionally?
This has been my first real 8 to 5 job and it has taught me a lot. Learning how to manage time professionally and personally, communication skills, and working with diverse groups of people has been a great life lesson. My first role here in the OIA was working in the main reception area and with the passport office. I had to interact with both domestic and international students as well as the public. This really changed my perception of things and I learned a lot about different cultures and groups of people.
What do you do to relax?
Things that people probably don’t know about me… I am seriously addicted to Sudoku puzzles. My favorite thing … I really love playing video games. In high school, I thought I was the coolest person because I got Guitar Hero- the Aerosmith Edition™. I’ve never been very good at the sports related games- I’m just not coordinated that way. Now, I enjoy playing Just Dance™ with my son. I show no mercy!