By: Lauren Wake
Beta Nu-University of Utah
I am obsessed with the symphony. No really – I have an unhealthy love for this piece of Alpha Chi Omega heritage. I went to the University of Utah, which is one of the few chapters that still sings it consistently, and let me tell you the melody is beautiful.
But the melody really isn’t what does it for me, it’s the meaning and intention behind every single word in the song. Think about it: an entire song dedicated to not just our sisterhood, but to our mission and our history and our Ritual. It’s fantastic, which is why the Symphony of Alpha Chi Omega has been on repeat over and over and over again in my head since I got on a plane in Los Angeles at 6:15 AM to head to Woodstock, Virginia. And sisters, that 6:15 AM flight was just the beginning of a grueling (but SO rewarding) weekend.
The ten of us started off as (almost) perfect strangers. We range in age from 23 to 65+. We come from all over the country. We have different tastes, different accents, different life stories, but the one thing we shared was Alpha Chi Omega. We shared the symphony.
Over the course of this weekend I have truly learned what it means to be a sister. I cannot count how many times I have been tired and broken down, wishing I had four more hands, when two more real, strong women were walking towards me, ready to lift me up. We had rough manual work to do. We had grueling weather conditions. We had a daunting task and reality to face, but we persevered.
We saw the beauty in even the most common things of life (new toilet seat anyone?). We shed the light of love and friendship to each other, and to the facilities at Response, Inc. We appreciated every little service. We appreciated those with badges different than our own (hi Kaye & Kristyn!). We put love, unselfishness and sincerity into everything we did, and we did it all with happiness, joy and peace. We lived the symphony, and we lived it well.
Each one of the women I have met this weekend helped me love each line of the symphony a little bit more through their strength, hope and determination, but most of all through their sisterhood. I may be leaving Virginia with some sore muscles, but I am also leaving it with nine new beautiful and blossoming relationships with some of the greatest sisters I know. You are all my symphony!
By: Anita Kelly Grant
Epsilon Lambda, University of Texas-Arlington
Today was our first day of work for Alpha Chi Omega’s Global Service Initiative. While eating breakfast, our host, Kaye, asked us to reflect on the meaning of service versus volunteering. As I worked alongside my sisters, my mind continued to wander back to this question. And I must say that throughout the day, I saw many examples that illustrated just what volunteering and service truly mean.
We started our day by meeting with Beth, the volunteer coordinator of Response Inc. Response Inc. is a community organization dedicated to preventing and helping people overcome sexual abuse, domestic violence, and other forms of abuse and exploitation. Response Inc. provides outreach, advocacy, education and supportive services to its clients and the community.
Beth gave use a tour of the facility while explaining the day-to-day functions of the organization. I was humbled and intrigued by the support they provide to such a large service area and how dedicated the staff was in carrying out their mission. I felt honored to be with my sisters who were as passionate and eager as I was to help.
At the facility, we identified so many areas that needed our attention – there was no shortage of things to do! We split into two groups and we went to work; one group cleaned inside the house and the other group worked on the outside. It was a hot and humid day, but no one seemed to mind. We were engrossed in our hard work and the energy and enthusiasm was contagious. The day went by quickly and we returned to our home base, tired and spent, but with a huge sense of accomplishment.
It has only been day one of this Global Service Initiative, but I am truly looking forward to tomorrow and to spending more time working with my sisters. I am proud to be a part of such a selfless group that understands the meaning of teamwork and altruism. To give of your time, talent and treasure to a greater cause that benefits others is such a rewarding experience. It is the true spirit of volunteer service and it personifies what it means to be an Alpha Chi – to spread the light of love and friendship.
So back to Kaye’s question: what is the difference between volunteering and service? For me, I see them as a continuum. We volunteer because we identify with a cause we feel is worthy of our time and energy. As we see the positive impact that our actions have on the community, our desire to serve becomes a calling for something much greater. It is this sense of kinship and connection with those who share our passion that drives us and gives us hope that our actions will incite others to give back as well. When people give of themselves to meaningful causes, they are investing in the kind of community and world in which they want to live.
By: Carly Sivillo
Beta Omega, University of Toledo
Today, April 20, 2017, marks the first day of the alumnae Global Service Trip. I came into this trip a little nervous because I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was the first to arrive at the airport, and soon after I had arrived and settled in, I met Chris, another trip participant.
After meeting Chris, I became more comfortable as she had been on the previous alumnae trip and was telling me all about her experience and how fun it was. A bit later, we met up with the rest of the ladies who had flown in. We all hit it off right away! We spent the rest of the time at the airport chit-chatting away, and the time flew by.
Before we knew it, Kristyn and Kaye were picking us up from the airport. Once we arrived at the Tri Sigma house, Kaye, who was the Tri Sigma national president for six years, began giving us a tour of the beautiful home we will be staying in for the next four days.
As we settled in, all of the women got together in the porch area and talked for hours! I must say, I was a little intimidated when I found out that I was the youngest member out of the group; I just graduated in 2016 and am new to the alumnae world. But these ladies have made me feel so comfortable. I am looking forward to spending the rest of the weekend learning from and working with them.
I am so excited to start our work tomorrow at Response, Inc. and continue developing a bond with other Alpha Chi Omega alumnae. A quote from Chris’s shirt stated, “It’s not just 4 years, it’s a lifetime,” and this trip is already helping me understand what that truly means.
By Mallory Church
Delta Zeta, Central Michigan University
Last year when I got my job offer to be an Alpha Chi Omega chapter consultant I was beyond proud of myself and excited for my new adventure. However, when I shared my post-graduation plans, a common response I received sounded something like, “Oh you can’t let go? So, you’re basically going to be in Alpha Chi for an extra year?” Of course, I knew my year as a chapter consultant would be much different than my undergraduate experience, but what I didn’t expect was how much I would grow during my “extra year.”
In June when I started this journey, I had no idea what laid ahead; I was a little nervous but I was eager to get started. Now, I have only one month left in my “extra year” and my heart is so heavy knowing that this experience is wrapping up. My year as an Alpha Chi Omega chapter consultant has been one of the most incredible journeys of my life. In college, Alpha Chi Omega gave me opportunities to learn what it meant to be a real, strong woman. As a consultant, I have been given experiences to test that. Being a consultant has helped me become even stronger, more confident and proud to be an Alpha Chi Omega. This year has brought me even closer to the bond we share as Alpha Chi’s and I am so thankful for this experience. I not only gained 17 incredible consultant sisters but also the encouragement of the entire headquarters staff, the support of our incredible volunteer team and the friendship of many collegiate members. These real, strong women have not only supported me through the challenges I faced this year but they have celebrated my wins with me too. The women I have worked with on the road will always hold a very special place in my heart; I will forever cherish the laughs and memories we have shared.
There’s a very cheesy Dr. Suess quote I love, “don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” If you know me you know tears come easy, but I intend to spend my last month making the most of every moment so when it is all said and done, I have nothing but unforgettable memories (and happy tears). Senior members are also wrapping up their last year with Alpha Chi Omega. As you wrap up the year, join me in taking advantage of every opportunity with these 5 challenges:
I challenge you to…
- Give more: Even when you think you have given your all to your chapter, dig deeper. At the end of the year, it’s easy to pull back on your involvement but I challenge you to do just the opposite. Attend everything! It’s so easy to get caught up in classwork, job searching or even a good show… but I challenge you to spend more time with sisters! Take a study break during the week to go to a sisterhood event.
- Make a bucket list and cross off everything: The semester is not over yet and you still have time to enjoy this experience! Never studied at the local coffee shop? Pack your backpack and grab a sister! Your college town has been your home for 4 years and I promise you will miss it when you have to say goodbye. No matter where your college town is, there is something new to try! Adventure is out there…
- Build a new relationship: Take a newly initiated member out to lunch. There’s no stranger feeling than returning to your chapter as an alumna and only knowing half the members. Get to know the members in the newest class so you have someone to come back to in a few years!
- Be thankful for sisterhood: The women that you have met through your membership in Alpha Chi Omega will be your sisters for the rest of your life. You will never find women who will love, support, and challenge you like your Alpha Chi Omega sisters will. Take time over the next month to maintain these relationships! Send a letter to a sister you are grateful for, catch up with a sister you have not hung out with in a while or go on an adventure with a group of sisters (see challenge #2).
- Leave a legacy: Your time in the chapter may be coming to an end but you still have time to make a positive impact; I challenge you to leave a legacy that will be talked about for years to come. Be the senior member the rest of the chapter looks up to because you enjoyed a full four-year experience and filled your chapter with love, unselfishness and sincerity.
The best part about wrapping up this journey is what lies ahead. I cannot wait to find my next role to continue being a part of the incredible work that Alpha Chi Omega does. Graduating seniors, my last challenge for you is to find your next journey in Alpha Chi. Whether it is joining an alumnae chapter, supporting a chapter in an advisory board position, or finding a volunteer role; I challenge you all to continue to seek the heights with Alpha Chi Omega!
So, here’s to finishing our last semester together; may it be full of sisterhood, adventure and – if you’re anything like me – lots and lots of coffee!
Lynette Wert, Psi
REAL: “Real” used to be defined by a fancy French word: raison d’être (“reason for being”). Now we sign up for symposiums teaching “Getting to Real” and drop catchphrases such as, “Get real, man!” “Real” simply represents the operating principles that guide one’s life. Everyone develops a philosophy, even if it is never stated in words.
We go through the years improvising, starring in our individual, unscripted, 24/7 reality shows. No rewinds. No retakes. Plenty of bloopers. Normal life? Life as usual? Never happens! Staying true to personal internal principles is the only preparation for tomorrow’s always-surprising segment of our life script.
Some believe machines may improve our reason for being through artificial intelligence, virtual reality and augmented reality. We hope accessing quantum computing, acquiring fancier phones, using faster joysticks and wearing alternative vision glasses will make us smarter and happier. A better reality or just busier? Real gets confused with more. Real becomes obscured in the search for more “likes,” more stuff, more Botox!
The passing years have tuned my internal VCR to fast forward. Focus has shifted from temporary (more) to permanent (real). What time I fold the laundry won’t matter. The basket will just sit there. Visiting my friend in the hospital today will matter. She will feel better and I will feel better. Being real, for me, is now finite: knowing how to give and receive love and remembering when to laugh.
STRONG: First comes feeling safe and secure in one’s own skin, physically and emotionally. With that in place, an individual can proceed to confidence in self, which extends to compassion for others.
Three generations of AXO’s and a Little! (left to right.) Lynette Lemon Wert, Andrea Wert Ebeling, Christine Ebeling, and Jacqueline Hirlinger. Jacque- line was Christine’s “little” at Gamma Tau. Jacqueline is currently Gamma Tau president. Lynette and Andrea lived in the same Psi chapter house 25 years apart.
I was lucky to have strong women as ancestors. My grandmother married at 15 and had seven children—not surprising for 100 years ago. But then she finished high school, went to college, obtained her master’s degree and set up one of the nation’s first special education programs. Both my mother and mother-in-law set examples that strength meant mental toughness rather than physical brawn. Strong did not mean being the loudest or smartest person in the room (although sometimes they were both!).
Throughout my life, from my highest joys to my deepest devastations, those who arrived first, either to pop the champagne cork in celebration or to shed heartfelt tears in grief, were family, Alpha Chi sisters and a poet. My advice for good times and bad: Call your family, call your sisters and call a particularly good poet!
Real, strong qualities were revealed to me in Alpha Chi Omega by my big, Jane Thompson Garrett, and my little, Kay Husky Nida, during my college days in the Psi chapter. In my academic career at the university, I was mentored by Shakespeare scholar Dr. Shelley Rutherford and author and artist-in-residence Marilyn Harris Springer. As we became friends, we discovered the three of us had much in common as working writers, working mothers and Alpha Chi Omegas.
I believe every workplace is enhanced by women’s creativity. In professions from arts to zookeeper, it is invaluable to have like-minded, strong women as friends, colleagues and mutual supporters.
Lynette Lemon Wert with granddaughter Christine Noel Ebeling at Gamma Tau initiation 2013.
Women & Wisdom is not only a great use of alliteration, but also an organic, fortunate pairing of words. All of us are ultimately self-educated, helped partly by institutions and mostly by experience. A trusted guiding hand at home, in college or in our careers is often the crucial nudge forward on the path to our dreams. Mentors post the signs that point the way to success. Alpha Chi Omega’s Women & Wisdom program promises benefits both ways. After all, which brings the greater reward: finding a helping hand or being one?
Supporting the Foundation is an outgrowth of my dad’s forthright financial advice: “Money is a good thing, so spend some, save some and use some to do good.” The Foundation is a way to pass it on by building a bridge linking past knowledge to future endeavors. Those who will join Alpha Chi Omega in coming years will undoubtedly expand the definitions of education, enhancement and empowerment, and the Foundation’s resources will be there to help them.
Besides the thrill of having three generations of Alpha Chi Omegas currently in my family, I trust in the overall Panhellenic concept of fraternity. Finding a community of women with compatible goals allows for expanding opportunities for all, both on campus and in the community. I have been privileged to serve as a chapter recruitment chairman, a member of the alumnae house corporation and president of Oklahoma City Panhellenic. Fraternity life has offered me an opportunity to participate all the way from happy collegian to hurried carpooler to corporate exec to crafty grandma!
In 1956, my goal as a freshman was remarkably shallow. I wanted to join a sorority—any sorority! I was impressed that the Psi chapter had a high grade point average. The house had the same turquoise carpet and Community silver-plate pattern my family used at home, so I felt at ease. How fortunate that I followed the lead of my three best friends and pledged Alpha Chi Omega. Through the years, the chapter GPA varied. The house corporation changed the carpet and silverware many times. But after 60 years, I’m grateful that my best friends are still my best friends and Alpha Chi Omegas—real, strong, loyal, wise women.
Mary Pat Lambke, Beta Epsilon
Why did you join Alpha Chi Omega?
As a freshman, the Beta Epsilon chapter made me feel welcomed and provided a “home away from home” at Michigan State University.
What makes someone a real, strong woman?
Now, as I enter my second half of life, a real, strong woman is a woman who knows herself, her values and her beliefs, and is willing to live them fully. She does not need to convince everyone that she, or her values and beliefs, are correct, yet she is open to hearing others’ points of view.
How has Alpha Chi Omega empowered you as an alumna?
Throughout my career, I was able to reflect and draw upon the leadership experiences afforded to me by Alpha Chi Omega, specifically the Beta Epsilon chapter. These experiences sent me forward with the confidence to become a successful saleswoman. Additionally, as I have become more personally involved with the organization, I have the ability to empower our younger members and influence their life choices. While their collegiate experiences are vastly different from mine, I truly believe that Alpha Chi Omega is making a positive difference in today’s young women so that they, too, will be successful in their careers and personal lives.
In your opinion, how does the Real. Strong. Women. Fund empower the women in our Fraternity?
Fraternity programs funded by the Real. Strong. Women. Fund address issues that young women are facing on today’s college campuses. These programs are empowering our women to better themselves and prepare for the future.
What’s your favorite memory/story about support from the Real. Strong. Women. Fund?
Actually, this goes back several years. I had been asked to participate in an early sharing of the strategic plan, which the tagline Real. Strong. Women. was a part of. From that conversation, I knew that Alpha Chi Omega was heading in a direction I could fully support. So while I was not an involved alumna, I was definitely willing to support Alpha Chi Omega financially. Through those years, I would simply send a check when I was able. I would get very thoughtful notes, phone calls and requests for visits from Angela Harris, now our National President. I never responded to her, as my career was my first priority. Years later, after I became involved in the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation, I finally met Angela, and we have become friends through our work together on the Vision 2020 Strategic Plan. She is a new sister to me, and I treasure our reconnection!
Why do you support Alpha Chi Omega by giving to the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation?
I support Alpha Chi Omega by giving to the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation because I believe in empowering women. In order to empower women, I need to “walk the talk” through my actions and contributions, be that treasure, talent and/or time…or all of them! Alpha Chi Omega is poised to help young women during a challenging time for women. As an alumna who gained great experiences and a strong foundation from Alpha Chi Omega, I believe it is my responsibility to support Alpha Chi Omega by giving back and enabling others to have similar great experiences.
84 year old, Faythe, at her home on the beautiful Colorado River in Parker, AZ
My best friend’s mother was an Alpha Chi Omega, a fact I did not know when I joined. She laid the groundwork as her daughter Betty and I went through rush together. We both ended up pledging the Alpha Rho chapter of Alpha Chi Omega at the University of Idaho. Pledging Alpha Chi Omega was one of the best decisions I have ever made!
After one year at the University of Idaho, I ended up affiliating with the Chi chapter at Oregon State University. Around that time, Alpha Chi Omega created the traveling secretary position. Burnette Jones, then our national collegiate vice president, named Charlene Moore, Chi chapter, as the first traveling secretary. After Char retired, Burnette Jones (by this time our National President) visited the Chi chapter again and named me the second traveling secretary. It has always made me very proud to be involved in our consultant program since I was hired in 1957, and to watch it grow and prosper over the many years since its inception.
DC-3 Propeller Plan
I worked hard for Alpha Chi during those two years, crisscrossing our United States from coast to coast and border to border, visiting approximately 86 chapters. It is important to remember that at that time, jet airplanes were not yet in service. I traveled on the old DC-3 propeller planes. There were no rental cars, so my ground transportation was either by bus or train, or sometimes by a wonderful trip in an alumna’s car. There were no electric typewriters or cell phones or iPhones, so our reports consisted of one original and five or six carbon copies.
Alpha Chi Omega has empowered me in so many ways. The Fraternity has believed in me from the beginning by offering me the opportunity to serve in many different positions. My ultimate honor was being elected to the National Council in 1976 as the national treasurer. At that time in our nation’s history, interest rates were running at 17-19 percent, and inflation was 14 percent. Our Fraternity’s finances were structured in such a way that our collegians were providing most of our operating capital, and the alumnae participation was very small.
In my mind, we had to do something! I knew our alumnae would help if we informed them of our situation and told them that we needed them. We worked on laying the groundwork for the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation for two years in order to be ready to obtain permission from the 1978 National Convention voting delegates to proceed with the formation of the Foundation. It’s interesting to me to know that in the first week of our first annual mail campaign, the donations totaled about $287. That small beginning has led us to where we are today!
My background as a consultant has been valuable to me over the years. At times it was a tough job. I worked hard, but I enjoyed it very much. Sometimes I saw immediate results from my visit while other times it took longer. Overall, our travelers’ visits have produced wonderful results; results that have made a positive difference in the growth of our Fraternity.
From left to right: Charlene Moore Simpson, Mary Kacmarcik Baker, and Faythe Vorderstrasse at Chi chapter centennial celebration.
It has been interesting to me to watch Alpha Chi Omega grow over the years. We have implemented many new programs that have not survived the test of time, but our consultant program has grown and prospered and proven its value over and over again.
Having this opportunity to support both the consultant program and the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation is very special to me. I knew from the beginning that we had to do something to provide our Alpha Chi Omega chapters with the programs needed to enable our members to grow and to prosper.
I guess from reading this, you know that I am very proud of my participation in the consultant program AND in laying the groundwork involved in the formation of the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation, allowing me the opportunity to work closely with real, strong women endowed with tremendous skills and dedication in leading our Fraternity. Put this together with the fact that many of these women have become wonderful, close, lifetime friends, and it makes all of this even more special. We’ve had lots of laughs and lots of fun times over the years, and these friendships have made it all even more worthwhile!
Why did you join Alpha Chi Omega?
I was the first person in both of my parents’ families to attend college. It was never a “Will you go to college?” discussion, but always a “Someday, when you go to college…” discussion. My parents were enthusiastic and encouraging, and they wanted me to have the full experience. Pledging a sorority at UT Austin was a part of that experience. Why Alpha Chi Omega? Cheryl Holt! Cheryl was my high school friend and someone I trusted and loved being around. I knew that if Cheryl had found her home in Alpha Chi Omega, I could do the same. I essentially pledged for friendship, but little did I know that Alpha Chi would provide me with the opportunity to learn to work collaboratively, provide a safe place to take risks as I planned my future, and teach me to make a difference in my community as a leader and philanthropist.
What makes someone a real, strong woman?
Alpha Chi Omega’s brand holds a special place in my heart. Our brand and tagline were launched at our 2008 National Convention, where I presided as National President. After months of research and focus groups, along with robust conversation amongst the National Council, executive director and marketing staff, we realized Real. Strong. Women. was the perfect definition of Alpha Chi Omegas everywhere. Real means genuine. It means being who you are and taking aim for who you WANT to be no matter where or when you were born! Real is being the best you can be, a “true original.” Strong is living with a purpose in your heart. It is being strong in body, mind and character. A strong woman dreams big, isn’t afraid, looks for opportunities and accepts challenges. It is seeking to reach the heights today, tomorrow and always. It is who we are!
How has Alpha Chi Omega empowered you as an alumna?
Past National Presidents in Indianapolis, IN. Front row, left to right: Karen Aunan Miley (1976-1980), Ellen Little Vanden Brink (1988-1992), Judy Evans Anderson (1992-96). Back row, left to right: Marsha King Grady (2008-2012), Donna Smith Chereck (2004-08), Diane Wilson Blackwelder (2012-16), Julie Cain Burkhard (2000-04), Angela Costley Harris (2016-)
Alpha Chi Omega gives me amazing opportunities in so many ways! As an educator, I’ve had the opportunity to model and mentor young women in my recruitment advisor and chapter advisor roles. As an NPC delegation member who works with our collegiate chapters and many college campus Panhellenics and as National President, I had the opportunity to be the ultimate brand ambassador for Alpha Chi Omega. This amazing organization has given me the self-confidence to be brave and to look at challenges as opportunities. I am empowered to be solution oriented. I’m also empowered to ask for help when I know I can’t go on a tough road alone. I have sisters who will always have my back and be at my side. I am empowered to partner with our NPC sisters and NIC brothers to advocate for and work to preserve this amazing experience called sorority for generations of young women who will come after me!
In your opinion, how does Social Excellence Training empower the women in our Fraternity?
Social Excellence Training is all about how to be on your best game! It is about learning how to market and sell the Alpha Chi Omega experience. How to engage in meaningful conversations where the potential new member is encouraged to share her interests and dreams. Social Excellence Training takes the focus off of “I” and turns the focus to “YOU.” It is about learning and appreciating what Alpha Chi Omega looks for in a member: academic interest, personal development, character and financial responsibility. All the membership standards that have ensured Alpha Chi Omega is a premier organization for women!
Why do you support our sisterhood by giving to Alpha Chi Omega?
Quite simply, to ensure that this experience that has been transformational in my life continues on and on for current collegians, alumnae and all those young women who are yet to wear our lyre badge. I strongly believe that if all our members are educated to understand the “why” of raising Foundation dollars, they will understand and support the Foundation. The Foundation was created to support educational programming for our members. The reason it continues is the same: to provide educational programs and support initiatives for domestic violence awareness. Supporting Alpha Chi Omega with my time and my financial donations makes me feel good! Supporting my sisters gives me a deep personal satisfaction of having contributed to the greater good of Alpha Chi Omega.
Happy MacDowell Month! Here are a few ways chapters celebrated the arts, their sisters who are involved in the arts and Alpha Chi Omega’s heritage as a fraternity for music majors at DePauw University.
Stetson University shared this photo of sisters who are musicians and in the Pep Band:
Chapter members from the University of South Carolina enjoyed a movie to celebrate MacDowell Month:
Sisters at Butler University put together a Spotify playlist of chapter members’ favorite songs:
Sisters from Bowling Green State University attended a Music Industry Club meeting earlier this month:
Sisters from University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill got together and created works of art:
Our chapter at Middle Tennessee State University is celebrating this month by featuring sisters who are involved in various forms of arts on their Instagram account:
Ball State University featured their sister, Katie who works at the campus museum, the David Owsley Museum of Art:
Sisters from Utah State enjoyed a night out at the theater:
Western Michigan University celebrated MacDowell Month by watching their sister perform at the Winter Gala.
What did you do to celebrate the arts this month? Post your photo on Instagram or share an update on Twitter with the hashtag #macdowellmonth.
Chapter: Upsilon, Millikin University
VP Philanthropy: Danielle Farley
- Name of event: Alpha Chi’s and Pies
- Amount raised: $1,319.78
- Shelter that will benefit from the donation: Dove Shelter in Decatur, IL
Tell us more!
1. Please provide a description of your philanthropy event (did you partner with other organizations on your campus or in your community? How long did it take you to plan the event? What were some of the highlights?)
Our previous VP of Philanthropy, Meghan Bryan, began planning for this event back in August of 2016 because she knew that it would require a lot of planning. This included coming up with decorations, planning out the layout of the event in our house and designing shirts, all to be ready for the event in October. All of the members of our chapter were required to bake two-dozen of any delicious treat, which was then set out at our event.
There were a few things that set us apart and contributed to our raising as much money as we did. Our campus is very small (only 2400 people), so we needed everyone on board in order to make the event a success! We made sure that we included new vegan and gluten free options, so that a larger group of people could enjoy Alpha Chi’s and Pies. We also made sure to label everything very carefully so that anyone with allergies could enjoy the sweet cookies, cakes and pies too. We got more of the campus community involved by having a “Greek Hour,” where members of other Greek organizations could come to our event between 8-9pm and enjoy pizza (pie) and would be present for the raffle drawing. We sold raffle tickets for three different prizes (movie-themed, makeup-themed and coffee-themed) for $0.50 a piece and ended up raising over $50 just from the raffle. At the event, not only did we set out tables with food, but we also decorated our house’s living room with colorful tables and a photo booth, so that our guests at the event felt comfortable and had places to take pictures and create memories.
2. In your opinion, what made the event so successful?
What really set our event apart this year from years prior is the overall excitement we created on campus! We sold pre-sale tickets prior to the event, which really grabbed the attention of students, and we even reached out to some families in our local community. Tickets at the door were slightly more expensive than the pre-sale tickets, and we sold more tickets overall because many students wanted the cheaper price! The Upsilon chapter of Alpha Chi Omega has really strived this year to truly embody “Real. Strong. Women.” in our everyday life, and doing so has made students on campus so excited for our events! Upsilon did an amazing job this year marketing for Alpha Chi’s and Pies, which included reaching out to freshman and transfer students who might not be aware of the annual Greek events, and talking up the event on social media. Something done differently this year: our planning committee made sure to promote our support of domestic violence awareness. It isn’t just about the sweet treats, it’s also about educating the campus community about WHY we raise money for the local battered women’s shelter. Our university only consists of around 2,400 undergraduate students, so to raise as much money as we did, knowing that Upsilon was able to educate so many of our peers was one of the most rewarding experiences being apart of Alpha Chi Omega.
3. Why did your chapter choose to make the gift through the LPI process?
Our chapter chose to donate through the LPI process because it is the most secure way of processing the funds raised and to ensure that the donation is being put to good use.
4. Why does your chapter value giving to both your local shelter and the Alpha Chi Omega Foundation?
It’s a great way to make sure our donation was handled securely, and it’s an opportunity to also give back to the organization that does so much for us!