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[VA Feature] Riza Mae Iso - The Word Alchemist

"Gunpowder, gelatin, dynamite with a laser beam," this line from the song Killer Queen by Queen summarizes the personality of Riza Mae Iso. She has been a content writer in Ripple VAs for more than a year now and is currently the Features Editor of The NORSUnian, the official student publication of NORSU. She was a delegate of the OSSEI National Training Workshop on Campus Journalism in Baguio City. She was also one of the organizers and the moderator of webinars focused on youth and society empowerment, such as Katilingban: Webinar on a Journalistic Society and #YouthDecides: The Role of the Youth in Elections. As a senior Bachelor of Science in Chemistry student at Negros Oriental State University, she takes pride in braving through life's contaminants and dissolving them with her drive.

A seemingly insignificant decision that had a massive impact on her life was when she submitted an application form in 2018 to join in a publication and got accepted. That spur-of-the-moment decision she made back then really made a big impact on her life right now. Before, when she worked, there was no boundary between weekdays and weekends. Now, she makes sure to give herself time to pause. Coworkers would describe Riza as responsible, someone who gives attention to detail, is hands-on, and a great team contributor. She likes to document and plan things ahead of time to grasp everything while keeping herself organized and accomplishing the task on time. Aside from that, she takes the initiative to lead whenever leadership is needed.

From time to time, she indulges in leisure and does mundane things to help her approach things with a new and refreshed perspective. As an INFJ and a Potterhead, she spends most of her time reading books and watching movies. She loves to journal because she can process her thoughts through a notebook and step outside her house for a few minutes to breathe fresh air. Occasionally, she takes photos and edits them to incorporate a creative space into her life. Riza also possesses the talent that certain words will come out of her mind when she writes. Even though she does not know what that word means, her preconceived definition of that term is accurate after looking it up in the dictionary.

When people talk about "adventures", they immediately think about reaching the highest mountain peak or diving 20-ft below the ocean surface. Riza's unique adventure includes communicating with people she looks up to because of their prestige and how they make the world a better place. Meanwhile, she likes interviewing renowned, creative, and progressive individuals whose insights are game-changers. She also loves the learning process that she has experienced throughout her journey. These are some of her most cherished adventures so far. Thus, she is passionate about making the future attainable and enriched. Everything she does revolves around building a great foundation.

Riza is thankful to be part of Ripple, knowing that their skillset matched her experiences as a writer, which broadened her opportunities by trying out a new environment. Ripple is generous in helping others complete their tasks and is approachable despite the remote work. According to her, the management is ideal because they respond to concerns without a hint of judgment. Ripple is transparent, and they listen to what the virtual assistants have to say.

She loves Ripple's mission, which is centered on making a positive ripple effect in the community. She tries to emulate it by working with what you are good at and giving it back to society. She contributes through her words. Ripple VAs made Riza a better person in approaching her write-ups and managing her time with every project. Many messages need to be relayed in this world, and Riza believes Ripple is one of those entities with the channel to deliver them to their constituents. "Words are powerful, and when used properly, they can make a difference in a company or even in the world," she said.

Riza's message to aspiring freelancers is not to be afraid to start small. "We are all beginners at some points in our lives, but that does not mean we cannot be more than that. Do not hesitate to try the opportunities given to you because they are your steppingstones to becoming better at what you do. Sometimes, some of your work goes unnoticed or unpaid because you cannot control certain situations. Despite these circumstances, always put a value on whatever you make no matter what, because at the end of the day, these outputs will build your opportunities," she shared.


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