From Immigrant to Empowered Icon: Unveiling the Success Story of Aytakin (lka) Aliyeva
Immigration is one of the most common features of our times – the global village has never been this global. Whether seeking a better life or refuge, countries worldwide have opened their doors to immigrants from diverse backgrounds. However, the transition is scarcely as easy. Aytakin (lka) Aliyeva faced many obstacles in her early years in post-Soviet Azerbaijan. Yet she had other plans for herself – higher education, better living prospects, and stable financial standing. With her parents’ support, she went on to achieve her dreams one after the other.
Growing up in an environment where girls were never encouraged to pursue their dreams and were expected to marry early, Aytakin’s parents would undoubtedly be seen as radical thinkers. They supported their daughter and her dreams of becoming more than just a girl from a war-torn country.
Aytakin was 30 when she moved to the US for a graduate degree in social media and communications. She left behind the world she had known her entire life, a well-paying job at an oil company, and her family to try and make something of herself in the New World.
As a female immigrant in her early 30s, Aytakin quickly learned that the corporate world was harsh. Wherever she applied for a job, they would say she was either overqualified or not experienced enough. For several years, she only had the option of low-paying jobs like working as a server, a babysitter, taking care of elders, or being a receptionist. Her husband was in the same boat as her, and they both struggled to gain stable financial footing.
What really turned her life around was when she spoke to a hiring manager for a law firm. She hoped to apply for the position of receptionist when she met him, and it was here that she believes she was given a wake-up call. He told her to take a chance on her skills – instead of going for low-level jobs, she should try to apply for the ones she thought she deserved based on her skill levels. Aytakin credits her entire career shift to the hiring manager she met that day.
While her professional life began to gather steam and only went sky high from that point, Aytakin could never forget her helplessness and directionlessness when she first came to the States. Lacking assistance or guidance during her challenging moments, Aytakin realized she had minimal support apart from her husband. Motivated by this, she embarked on a journey to alter the situation.
When Aytakin reached a point of financial stability and felt satisfied with her career, she created an organization to empower female immigrants. A sisterhood that helps build meaningful relationships while also providing them with the support and help needed to stand up on their feet in a society that inherently sees them as others. She called the group Femigrants – a professional community of diverse female immigrants from all backgrounds and industries.
Aytakin’s vision, from the very beginning, has been to provide women with the platform they need to achieve their professional goals and seamlessly integrate themselves into modern society. This multifaceted vision encompasses various aspects, and Femigrants is an organization that considers the broader context
It offers expert advice from professionals to anyone looking to work or establish their own business. They also organize training programs and events that help members develop their knowledge and skills in cultural adaptation, career advancement, public speaking, etc. Their most recent event, Grow Your Network, Influence, and Net Worth With Social Media, hosted by LinkedIn HQ, allowed several speakers from varying social media platforms to take the stage; tell their stories, and share secrets of their field of expertise.
Aytakin’s goal is to provide immigrants access to career sources and the support they need to make something of themselves in the New World. She believes everyone should have an equal ground to start from, and though there is still a long road ahead of her, Aytakin is happy with each milestone.
To learn more about Aytakin, and her accomplishments over the years, visit her LinkedIn.