Finding a Family

Thank you, everyone, for the overwhelming amount of responses on my last blog. It was amazing! Your thoughts, opinions and stories about Greek life helped me consider it on a deeper level. In part because of your recommendations, I decided to join Alpha Phi Omega.

With my new brothers before the pinning ceremony!

Last night, I became a member of the Winter 2012 pledge class and hope to be inducted in March! Along with 18 other brothers, I will be spending the next six weeks going through pledge activities, learning the history of the fraternity and then finally becoming official brothers. During this time, we also have “fathers” who mentor us and help us grow into the strong, loyal members we all are striving to become.

For those of you who are not familiar with Alpha Phi Omega, it’s a national service fraternity. Yes, I know what you’re thinking… fraternity, and I am a girl? How is that possible? APO is Alma College’s co-ed fraternity, so we all are considered “brothers,” which may seem kind of strange since half of the fraternity is female. It’s just the name given to members from the national level.

APO is the largest collegiate fraternity in the country. It is designed to promote service, leadership development and social opportunities. The fraternity motto is “be a leader, be a friend, be of service.” I decided that this is a good fit for me because service is something I have always taken part in. I was a member of S.T.A.N.D. (Students Taking A New Direction) in fourth grade. We did community service projects and helped around our school to inform people of the harmful effects of drugs and what they could do to you. In middle school, I continued working with S.T.A.N.D. and did service projects with my church youth group. I also volunteered at an animal shelter in my community and was an active member of Girl Scouts.

Once high school came around, I began searching for a new service organization because S.T.A.N.D. only went up to eighth grade. I found Interact Club, which is a student chapter of the Rotary Club. In no time, I found myself leading Interact Club as president. My senior year, I also was team captain for our Relay for Life team and served on the planning committee in Dearborn. As you can see, service has always been something that has interested me!

I am very excited to be adding letters to my life and to be associating myself with other students who share the same interests and values as me. Does joining APO mean that I will not be joining a social sorority? Not at all! The fraternity does not allow chapters to have houses on college campuses, therefore allowing students in social Greek organizations to also join APO and vice versa. I am planning to go through fall recruitment, and hopefully, I will be lucky enough to have two sets of letters in my life!

What are your letters? If they were APO, what kind of service projects did you do?

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