My sorority and my sisters are arguably the biggest part of my life. Since joining Sigma Alpha Iota, I have become a more confident woman and I have one of the largest support systems I could have ever imagined. My love for my sisters is reflected in my social media–my profile picture on Facebook is myself with my two Littles, my cover photo is a picture of myself with the 17 girls I trained as the chapter’s Vice President of Membership last spring, my Twitter and Instagram feeds are full of pictures of sisters at events and don’t even get me started on my Pinterest boards. All in all, my social media profile is pretty typical of a “sorority girl.”
However, my favorite thing about my sisterhood is how different and untypical all of my sisters are. Yes, we all know how to “sorority squat” for pictures and some of us “throw what we know” at the beach or on top of a mountain, but there are a lot of things that our social media profiles won’t tell you immediately.
One of our SAI sisters has made a huge impact on her community with her involvement–she has been an RA at school, worked as a camp counselor for Crane Youth Music and performs regularly with a pep band at our neighboring university. One of her many accomplishments and contributions includes a trip to Africa to teach and perform. She uses her gifts to inspire young musicians and has used the skills she learned there to become a better musician.
Several of our sisters, both past and present, have traveled to Jamaica to teach with a program offered by our school. While in Jamaica, they teach young students basic musicianship skills and learn about Jamaican music. Many sisters have come back to Potsdam with new knowledge about teaching styles as well as new skills in drumming. Our chapter recently hosted an event with local Girl Scouts about music and one of our sisters who had been to Jamaica was able to lead a drumming circle. Brothers of another music fraternity on campus, Phi Mu Alpha, have also been on this trip to Jamaica.
At the end of the school year, a Sigma Alpha Iota chapter in Syracuse hosted Province Day, a gathering for the SAI chapters in New York and Northern Pennsylvania. Many of our sisters who attended took to Snapchat or Instagram to document the day’s activities, but they also came back to our school with stories and ideas from other chapters. We were able to meet sisters from our chapter who were now active in a local alumnae chapter and who were able to tell us about professors and classes they had at Potsdam during their time at school. Sisters from other chapters were also able to share recruitment and community service ideas with others to help better SAI’s impact in several communities.
You can read my Facebook page and see lots of videos of animals that my friends and family have posted, you can see pictures of myself in Italy, Germany and Haiti, and you can read all of my Odyssey articles! But will my Facebook page tell you that I lived abroad for a year and that I’m tri-lingual? Probably not right off the bat, but it’s true. You can learn a lot about a person through their use of social media, but it’s unfair to base your entire impression of them from their friend's list and their profile picture.Many people who have never truly experienced Greek Life have seen the Hollywood portrayal of our organizations–parties, themed outfits, and alcohol. These things couldn’t be further from the truth. Our chapters are more than “the sorority squat” and blowing handfuls of glitter into a camera for a recruitment video. There’s a lot to the sisterhood that can’t be expressed in a photo or tweet, so you really do have to get to know us to find out who we really are.