|Flashback to fall 2011 recruitment|
For me, Chi Omega is where I found my home at home. My undergraduate institution was my first home away from home, and the home I found within Chi Omega is part of what made my college so special to me. You have your dorm hall, extracurricular clubs, sports teams, or majors to find people who have similar interests and passions... but for me my sorority truly was where I found a group of girls that became my best friends. Sure, I had friends from my freshman hall and orientation, but the difference here is that we weren't just a group of girls that were randomly thrown together. We chose to be where we were and with who we were.
I was never the person that thought I would rush a sorority upon matriculating into college (blame the exaggerations of Greek life perpetuated through mainstream pop culture and entertainment outlets), and while the stereotypes of sororities persist, I know that the commonality of shared experiences that I had with my sorority sisters was a defining moment of my college experience. Sure, there are still the stories of hazing, dirty rushing, and social hierarchies, and my college was not an exception at all to banned chapters and probations. But, my positive Greek experience was a direct result of what I put into it. Some of my favorite memories of Chi Omega include big/little reveal, fundraising for our philanthropy Make-a-Wish (I was philanthropy chair my junior year), living on the suite with girls who would become my closest friends (we didn't have sorority row at my school), getting dressed up for formals and in themes for mixers, and just all those little moments in between – running into a fellow member on campus, writing kicks and pats at chapter meetings, and acquiring a lifetime affinity for owls.
In all honesty, while my experience with Chi O really did make my experience at my college, Greek life isn't some absolutely irreplaceable and transformative experience. Greek life doesn't determine who you are, because ultimately you will end up in the group that fits best who you already are. Chances are, you shouldn't be anywhere else. And in my case, this was absolutely true.
I'll close with one of my favorite parts of our symphony: "To be womanly always, to be discouraged never." Go Chi O!
Photo taken with Canon PowerShot SD600