As a child I loved looking at my mother’s Kappa Alpha Theta magazine, imagining being a sorority girl. My aunt was also a Theta who happened to be a high school guidance counselor in Cincinnati, and in the 1950s every rushee had to have alumnae recommendations. She supplied the Theta chapter with everything, plus being an active alumnae volunteer with the collegians. Going to UC, I had a wonderful rush experience and loved Theta, Alpha Chi and Kappa, but expected to be a Theta. An interesting character-building event occurred when I did not get a bid. My aunt was livid (she had no children, so I was IT). She got no answers, and never helped the chapter again, but it was obvious to me, THEY FORGOT TO LIST MY NAME. Of course, AX and KKG took quota, so I held my chin up in Monday morning class with no sorority. The dorm advisor was a dear who was aware of all this, and weeks later, when an active AX did not return to school, they had one opening, and HALLELUJAH, I joined Alpha Chi when Eunie Egged Powell made it happen, and she became my big sister and today is still my closest friend/sister. We had the best chapter on campus, and collegiate years were great.
Years later, I was asked to be a Province President for North Carolina and Virginia. I visited each chapter and we opened new ones at UNC Greensboro and the University of Virginia. Both my daughters pledged Alpha Chi Omega at UNC-Chapel Hill. Moving to Nashville, I had a year visiting the alumnae groups and then became chapter adviser for our new chapter at Vanderbilt. What a wonderful experience with those women who were “starting from scratch” in a very strong Greek system. My personal experience helped me educate collegians in creating their bid list and evaluating potential new members.
Adding wonderful new alumnae groups in Charlotte NC and Denver CO, all of my experiences as a volunteer, and meeting women at the national level at conventions warmed my heart and broadened my friendships. My “no-bid” was a character-building event in my life, and I am grateful for having a positive attitude of the rejection. I am a better person for dealing with it and hope it broadened my working alongside Ellen Vanden Brink and Nancy Leonard during recruitment at Vanderbilt when we were struggling to build a competitive organization.
My life has been so enriched by my experience with Alpha Chi, I have a commitment to help other young women in the future.