I must express my disappointment, and that of the entire Panhellenic Executive Board at being eliminated from the article regarding Greek-letter life at GW (Discovering the `moment,’ March 30, p. 1).
As sorority members, we strongly believe that our Greek-letter experience and moments are equally as important as those of the fraternities. GW has enjoyed a strong sorority history this century, too. One must look at the solid tradition established by chapters such as Kappa Kappa Gamma and Delta Gamma who fought popular sentiments in the 1960s and refused to give up their sororities despite the social pressure.
As inheritors of this tradition, the almost 500 women who currently participate in Panhellenic sororities at GW are part of a dynamic group distinct to this campus. While some universities are experiencing a decrease in sorority participation, GW Panhellenic numbers continue to grow because of the unique moments that we offer. We encourage college women to develop beyond their potential through experiences and challenges from set values, leadership opportunities, service projects and a distinct type of friendship that only the Greek-letter system can offer. Our influence is seen throughout the campus and community too, as our women are constantly achieving great things.
As groups, we participate in service projects and raise thousands of dollars for at least a dozen national philanthropic causes ranging from hospitals in Israel, to Alzheimer’s, to the Ronald McDonald house. Many chapters have even adopted a campus cause, such as Sigma Kappa’s crusade to register bone marrow donors after their advisor was diagnosed with leukemia. The Panhellenic Association on a whole also adopted a cause, raising $2,700 this past month for breast cancer research through the Panhellenic Fashion Show, created entirely by Greek-letter women.
Our influence as individuals can be seen in every aspect of student life as well. This past year, an active member of Phi Sigma Sigma, Caity Leu, served as Student Association president, with numerous other women participating throughout the group’s executive board. Panhellenic is also pleased to have two Colonial Cabinet members in the 2000-2001 group, an all Greek-letter women’s grade point average above that of the all women’s average and hundreds of other achievements to represent each and every woman involved.
Altogether, I hope that in the future our involvement and contributions to Greek-letter life will not be eliminated for any reason. Sororities have been a major group on this campus for the past century, and I am confident that into the millennium they will continue to play an influential role.
-The writer is Panhellenic president.