I'd like to give you an invitation.
This isn't an invitation to member of this sorority. Instead, this is an invitation to be a better person.
That's not to say you are a bad person now. Far from it. But you can be a better person.
Those of us standing here, participating in this moment, accepted that invitation and are living testaments to its power. For each person here is a better person now than they were before they said yes.
This invitation includes us. So take a hard look. Look into our eyes. These are the people who will help make you better. We are in turn looking at someone who will do the same for each of us.
This is an invitation to find yourself. To accept that there is so much more of you to find. To understand that it's because of challenging situations partnered with supportive friends that any of us truly find ourselves.
This is an invitation to love each day for what it is: a chance to influence the world around you.
This is an invitation to get up from the couch, to step forward while others stand still, to emerge instead of withdraw. To take the hits, the blows, and the constant pressure of a visible existence and never stop smiling.
This is an invitation for sacrifice. By saying yes, we will accept a piece of your time, your talents, your resources, and your intellect. You can't hide those things. This is an invitation to be generous with who you are - both your strong aspects and your weak ones. The strong aspects we'll accept as your contributions to our mission. The weak aspects we'll accept as your willingness to be vulnerable.
This is an invitation to embrace the hardest lessons life can throw your way. How to keep integrity when the other choice is easier. How to choose between justice and mercy. How to care for someone by letting them go. How to balance personal ambitions with the collective needs of others. And then there will be even more lessons the next day.
This is an invitation to laugh. This is an invitation to make memories early in the morning, late at night, and every hour in between. This is an invitation to press the gas pedal a little harder.
This is an invitation to care more about the conversations around the dinner table than the trophies in the cabinet. It's an invitation to be human, so that you can find your humanity. It's an invitation to matter as much to these individuals as almost anyone else in their lives right now.
This is an invitation to a life informed by values that span the test of time and generations. You will be asked to speak words that have undeniable power. Words that will echo through decades hence and decades yet to come. Words that we have spoken and will bond us with you forever. Words that amplify your soul.
This is an invitation to live deeply.
And the sorority membership is included.
What do you say?
Adapted from http://fraternalthoughts.blogspot.com.au/2014/08/the-invitation.html
Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfil it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.
- Mother Teresa
I sincerely wish you will have the experience of thinking up a new idea, planning it, organizing it, and following it to completion and having it be magnificently successful. I also hope you'll go through the same process and have something "bomb out."
I wish you could know how it feels "to run" with all your heart and lose - horribly.
I wish that you could achieve some great good for mankind, but have nobody know about it except you.
I wish you could find something so worthwhile that you deem it worthy of investing your life.
I hope you become frustrated and challenged enough to begin to push back the very barriers of your own personal limitations.
I hope you make a stupid, unethical mistake and get caught red-handed and are big enough to say those magic words "I was wrong."
I hope you give so much of yourself that some days you wonder if it is worth it all.
I wish for you a magnificent obsession that will give you a reason for living and purpose and direction in life.
I wish for you the worst kind of criticism for everything you do, because that makes you fight to achieve beyond what you normally would.
I wish for you the experience of leadership.
You’re interested in joining our sorority? We’d love to have you. You’re the type of person we look for: committed, enthusiastic, a leader. We think you’ll do great things here, and we hope that we’ll open some doors for you. You will make lifelong friendships, and hopefully, you’ll be the type of person whose positive impact will be felt here for many years.
This is the start of something really cool.
We know you have your reasons for joining, and we also know that the reasons you’ll stay will be entirely different. Trust us on that one. People tend to join for the image, the props, and the social stuff. They stay around for the friendships and because they find a place where they can impact the lives of others. It’s a family. We know this. Soon, you will, too.
Soon, these letters will be yours. But, there’s one lesson that we need to impress upon you before you sign your name on the dotted line, pay that first fee, and get that first t-shirt. It’s the single most important thing we’re going to ask of you, so you need to listen and understand it, now, before you say “yes.”
It’s the one most important thing that any fraternity or sorority can impress upon its new members. It’s the one lesson that every group must impress upon its newest members. Truly, our survival as an organization in this community, and nationwide, depends on you understanding this one simple lesson and taking it to heart.
It’s more important than our history, our traditions, our structure, or our rules. Because, if you don’t understand this most fundamental lesson, then none of the other stuff will matter. If you don’t get this one “golden rule of fraternity,” then your son or daughter won’t have this kind of organization to join someday, and all of this will just be a fuzzy memory.
Here it is. Ready?
From the moment you say yes to this organization, you are always wearing your letters.
I’m going to repeat it.
From the moment you say yes to this organization, you are always wearing your letters.
We’re not talking about t-shirts, or sweatshirts, or hats made in the colors of the group. We’re not talking about a tattoo on your ankle, some party favor, or a badge you wear on your dress shirt.
What we mean is that when you say yes to lifetime membership in this group, everything you say, do and represent from that moment forward is a direct reflection on this group, your sisters, and the thousands of members who have come before you. Everything you put out to the world is a direct reflection of this sorority. Every decision, every achievement, every mistake you make happens to all of us from this point forward.
When you go to the grocery store, you represent us. If you fall asleep in class or earn a weak grade, you represent us. When you drive down the road and slow down so a pedestrian can cross the street, you represent us.
When you turn 21 and hit the town, you represent us. When you become a leader of another organization, you represent us. When you insult someone or talk badly about another group, you represent us. When you break up with someone and make decisions about how you behave during that difficult time, you represent us. When you go on Spring Break, you represent us.
When you go home and sit at your mother’s dining room table, you represent us. When you get a job and go to work for a company or organization, you represent us. When you commit your life to that special person, someday, you represent us.
You are always wearing your letters.
From this day forward, always. Every day, in every situation. They never come off.
As surely as if you tattooed these letters on your forehead. It doesn’t matter if you’re wearing a jersey with our name on it, or a business suit at an interview. You have to assume that every person you meet will form a permanent opinion about fraternities – good or bad – based on how you interact with them. Every good thing you do builds us up. Every dumb thing you do tears us down.
We live in a time when the actions of one man or one woman can kill a group like ours. One person who acts in a way that is inconsistent with our shared values can end a years of tradition and pride. One choice you make on a Friday night can take away everything that generations of men have worked to build.
All the stuff you see that belongs to us can be boxed up or thrown out, because of the choices you make.
If this seems a little intense, that’s good. Because it’s serious. If it sounds like too much responsibility, or if you don’t think you can behave in a way that reflects well on us at all times, then walk away now. Do us the favor. We won’t think less of you. In fact, we’ll thank you. This sort of commitment isn’t for everybody.
But, don’t say yes unless you understand.
We’re not asking you to give up anything. We aren’t asking you to become something you aren’t. We’re asking you to become something more. We’re inviting you to become part of a group of men who make a promise to take care of each other, every day. We’re asking you to become the very best version of you that you can be.
We’re asking you to take a leap of maturity and to go to that place where you’re the same, honorable, dignified person on Saturday night as you are on Tuesday morning.
It’s a big deal, and not everyone can do it. Forget everything you’ve heard up to this point. Forget how much you might desire this, or how much we might want to bring you into the group. Just clear your mind and ask yourself one question.
Are you ready to never take them off?
Because when you say yes, you’re not just putting letters on a sweatshirt. You’re putting them in your heart. You’re forever stamping your identity with them. Everything you are, from this point on, becomes who we are.
You will make mistakes, and sisters will remind you of your commitment. There will be times where you will see other sisters forgetting their promise, and you’ll need to remind them. That’s part of this whole “sorority” thing. We work together to make ourselves better women who stand for something. We carry each other. We matter to one another.
If we’re doing sorority right, then we’ll make you a better woman. If you’re doing everything right, then you will make us a better organization. So, please think about it. Take it seriously. Because if you say yes, these letters belong to you as surely as they belonged to our founders. If you say yes, these letters become your responsibility forever.
That’s the promise.
'Tis the season to be merry...and to think about other people. While we're all celebrating, Christmas, Hanukkah, Thanksgivukkah - there are many people out there who are unable to celebrate.
For many, the festive season can be a sad and lonely time.
So, think about others. Have a canned food drive. Raise some money for a local soup kitchen. Give service to a local charity. Be of good cheer and spread Christmas joy around.
Think about loved ones at home and far away. Think about the elderly. Celebrate the magic of the season with some young people who still see the magic all around them.
Have a wonderful time - and be all that you can be for those around you.
"In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back." - Camus
Everywhere you go, people talk about how to get fit and how to make your body stronger. Something we should consider as well is how to make our inner selves stronger. Just as we can work on developing our physical strength by eating healthy foods and doing exercise, it’s equally important that we develop our inner strength.
The only way to make it through the twists and turns that life can throw at you is to have inside of you a well of strength to draw upon.
Here are some ideas of ways to help you build your inner strength.
1. Have a supportive community and find your tribe.
The most basic and instinctive need as humans is our need to belong and be connected to a tribe or a community. It’s one of the first levels on Maslow’s Hierarchy, a psychology theory that organizes our basic needs in our personal development.
We might want to go it alone, but that can make life really difficult. As humans, we have a built-in desire to belong.
You can find community nearly everywhere, whether that is your sorority sisters, your close group of girlfriends, your family, at your gym, church or work. You can even find communities with your interests on Facebook, on forums and on sites like Meetup.com.
Having a community to fall back on is the equivalent of having a back up net to catch you should you fall.
2. Practice saying “No” and pick your battles wisely.
It can be very easy to take on extra commitments and obligations even when we don’t want to or don't have time. Sometimes we just can't help but say, "Yes, I'll do it."
When we take on responsibilities that we don’t have the time or energy to commit to, it can drain our reserves and make it difficult to take care of ourselves.
Saying “yes” to running the fundraiser at your child's school, or picking up an acquaintance at the airport when you really don’t have the time, is like purposely poking a hole in your tank and allowing your energy to leak out.
Not only does saying “no” free up time for yourself, it can be very empowering, and an unlikely source of strength. Pick and choose what things you want to do, and balance them with the things you must do.
By saying no to the things you really don’t want to do, you create a sense of inner strength while freeing up your time and energy to do the things that are going to serve you best.
3. Be thankful.
Life can suck, but if you look around you, you'll find any number of things to be grateful for.
The joy you derive from the world around you is the fuel that'll push you through the hardest of times, so pay attention to what you have and enjoy it for what it's worth.
And when you're having a hard time seeing just what it is you can be thankful for, your tribe can help you take a closer look at the things around you.
And if you're still having trouble, try giving back to your community. At least that way someone else will have something to be thankful for - you.
4. Remember that nothing is permanent.
If you’re in the middle of a period of grief or pain that you can’t control, stand aside and let the moment happen. If you are going through a prolonged period of difficulty, remind yourself that this, too, shall pass.
But there is also no shame is asking for help if you need it. And we all need it sometimes.
If you work on your inner strength you will be able, with the help of your friends, to overcome anything life throws at you.
As you progress, you will see where you have too many or not enough events, and when you might need to have planning and business meetings in order to achieve the social and philanthropic aims. Your executive board will also be able to schedule their meetings in and around other events. Once you have the plan decided - write the dates in your own planner/phone/calendar and circulate a list. That way you are less likely to double book yourself, and more likely to have high attendance at all sorority meetings.
As a chapter, it helps to know where you are going - and how you plan on getting there.
You might be wondering what the point of joining a sorority is? Guys are cool, why wouldn't you want to hang out with them too?
You definitely should take the time to get to know different men, in many different settings and social scenarios. Your best friend could be a man, you could spend most of your time with the football team. However, there is always a room for a female only space. Even the most tomboyish tomboy can get value from true friendships with other women.
When you are with your sisters, you can give anything a try. No one will make fun of you or degrade you.
When you are wtih your sisters, you can discuss those matters and issues that are close to you without feeling embarassed or ashamed.
When you are with your sisters, you can feel valued for the contribution you make, not for the colour of your hair, or the curve of your ... chin.
When you are with your sisters, you can rely on an honest opinion and an open frankness.
When you are with your sisters, you can offer this to your sisters and expect the same in return.
That's where we see the value in our sorority - what about you?
Alpha Chapter was pleased to crown Sarah as their "Miss Delta Kappa Nu" for 2013.
Sarah is a founding member of Alpha Chapter and an integral part of this sisterhood. She has given her all in helping Delta Kappa Nu and the causes Alpha Chapter support.
As the main spearhead behind the chapter's fundraising afternoon tea for the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Sarah helped the chapter to raise a significant amount of money and coordinated excellent games and activites for the enjoyment of all the participants.
Sarah exemplifies the values and spirit of Delta Kappa Nu, and we are sure she will continue her valuable contributions to the Alpha chapter.
Outside of sorority life, Sarah is a school teacher who gives her time and effort to molding the minds of our future generations.
"The sorority idea means close friendship fostered by long association in common interests. The sorority ideal is the symmetrically developed woman, the result of close confidence and lasting friendships with a few congenial spirits." – Ida Shaw Martin, The Sorority Handbook, 1909, p23
Why join a sorority? Especially a non-collegiate one. Why would you join an organisation which from what you've seen in the movies is primarily about drinking with frat guys and hazing pledges during your stay at a 4 year residential college? Doesn't that seem like a stupid thing to do?
I can't answer for you, but for me, a sorority is more than just the social trappings that show up so well in American college movies. It's more than wearing letters on your chest, decorated picture frames and golden college days.
A sorority is about sisterhood. It is about choosing the women to be a part of your family - not just good friends - but sisters who you can share your hopes and dreams with, who will support you in times of trouble and who will be honest with you when you're doing something stupid. And not just having sisters at college, but for the rest of your life. It's about trusting women in other parts of the world, who were chosen to be sorority sisters, to be your sisters. It's a life long commitment to the ideals and principles on which your sorority was founded.
In short, joining a non-collegiate sorority is about making a commitment to other women - particularly outside of joining because your roommate was doing it too.
- Elise Melican