Kappa Alpha Theta was founded 147 years ago on January 27th, which makes our sorority older than sliced bread, stop signs, zippers, mousetraps, and volleyball. Just as technology has come a long way since then, so has Kappa Alpha Theta. What started with just four amazing women now has more than 250,000 total initiated members.
By creating the first women’s fraternity our four founders—Bettie, Hannah, Alice, and Bettie— were leading women. Their spirit of innovation and scholarship can be seen in all Thetas, and in 2017 we especially honor Alice for her commitment to scholarship.
Although Founder’s Day took place on a Friday, it was celebrated with Saturday morning brunch. In addition to meeting an amazing group of alumnae, Theta sisters contributed to the Friendship Fund by donating a dollar for each year since they joined Theta. It was a great way to incorporate service into the celebration of our beloved Fraternity.
We hope to be commemorating Kappa Alpha Theta for many years to come, and thank you to everyone who joined us for brunch! It was especially touching to hear from Theta members of 25 and 50 years, and I think I can speak for every Theta in the room when I say that I hope to continue attending Founder’s Day celebrations years and years from now.
Hello all! Here’s hoping you are warm and comfortable at home for the holidays. Allow me to introduce myself, as I’ll be taking over the Theta blog in 2017. I’m an adamant lover of coffee (the stronger the better), dogs, and water-coloring my stress away. I’m also a freshmen environmental science major, so if you want to talk about composting I’m your girl.
For the most part, I’ll be staying behind the scenes to report on Theta happenings. But in my first blog, I’d like to talk about my own experiences with Theta. Going through recruitment wasn’t originally part of my plan. And even after recruitment, even during the excitement that is bid day, I wasn’t 100 percent sure sorority life was for me. Somewhere between apple picking and retreat, though, Theta became one of my favorite parts of SLU. When I look back on the past few months, so many of my favorite memories involve a Theta sister. From getting a big (and then getting sushi afterwards) to driving around at midnight looking for French fries, I’ve done so much with my Theta sisters already. Even some of my least favorite parts of college – the grueling hours in Pius Library and the drive home to Kansas City – have been made significantly more bearable by Theta sisters.
I hope that throughout the next year this blog is a fun way to read about the adventures of the Eta Omega chapter. 2017, here we come!
Throughout this semester, the Eta Omega chapter of Kappa Alpha Theta has done a wide variety of service projects. Individual sisters in the chapter have done their fair share of volunteering, but we have also volunteered at sites together as a group.
Wednesday, October 19, was Theta’s Day of Service. To help out our local community we hosted a Toiletries and Feminine Care Products Drive. During chapter that night, we collected various toiletries from our sisters and donated them to Local Women’s Shelters. It was a great way to get involved and help out our community and express our solidarity with local women on Theta’s Day of Service.
On Saturday, October 22, most of our sisters volunteered at Saint Louis University’s Make A Difference Day together as a group. We drove out to South St. Louis and helped out Gateway Garlic Urban Farm. This is a really cool organization that maintains organic farms in the St. Louis Urban area and donates all of its produce to local food banks. We, along with Kappa Delta sorority and Beta Theta Pi fraternity, helped them gather mulch for their farms and helped maintain a few of their many South St. Louis farms. It was a wonderful way to bond with our sisters and others involved in Greek Life at SLU through service!
Many sisters of Eta Omega spend time volunteering outside of what our chapter offers them. We have many sisters that are also involved in SLU’s service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega, as well. Close to 20 sisters spend many hours throughout each semester doing service for APO.
There are also sisters like Sarah Stiff and Kayla Simon that spend time at continuous service sites weekly. Sarah Stiff, a senior here at SLU, volunteers with Mission St. Louis’ Beyond School Program at St. Louis College Prep. She volunteers every Thursday from 4 to 6 with the after school program. The program offers support and resources to the St. Louis students in the school who may be falling behind in school, aren’t meeting their grade level requirements, want a place to work on homework, need a positive influence, or needs someone to help them succeed. Sarah loves the program and has been volunteering with Beyond School for 3 years now, “I have made genuine relationships with the students I’ve worked with and they give added meaning to my life. I look forward to going to volunteer every week and to seeing my students. They brighten my day as much as I can brighten theirs. Seeing their success and improvement is awesome but I enjoy doing service because of how incredible and hardworking the students are,” says Sarah.
Junior Kayla Simon is a volunteer in the Clinical Services Department at Ranken Jordan and on average spends about 4 hours a week there. Kayla works with the kids that are receiving medical care. Depending on their age, from infants to teenagers, and their gender, Kayla will play games with them, watch TV with them, do arts and crafts with them, read to them, or just hang out with them. Playing and interacting with volunteers is part of their treatment and Kayla finds is very cool being a part of their care team and watching them develop, grow, and heal. However, Kayla also does a lot of harder work. She helps out with all of Ranken Jordan’s deliveries each week as they receive a ton of supplies to support the children. She also works fundraising events that they host and does a lot of odd and end jobs to keep things running smoothly. Kayla says that what she enjoys most about volunteering is the kids, “These kids have been through a lot and work their butts off every day to get better and complete their therapy. It really puts things into perspective and how fortunate and blessed I am and how easy it is to help others.”
The are also many other sisters that spend their free time helping out their local community. This week, the Eta Omega chapter is doing a Gift Drive for the upcoming holiday season. We will be working with Voices for Children, our local philanthropy and a chapter of National CASA, to donate toys, gift cards and other needs to children and teens in foster care. The sisters of Eta Omega love to volunteer to help better their community.
November 9, 2013, marks a special day for the sisters of Eta Omega. Three years ago today, Kappa Alpha Theta colonized at Saint Louis University. The charter members started something truly amazing and are a part of something that is much bigger than themselves. Lizzy Miotti, a senior at SLU and an Eta Omega charter member, shares her story of starting the chapter and watching it develop over the years:
“What if I don’t fit in? What if this isn’t for me?” I asked my mom on the day before Eta Omega’s Founding Bid Day. My mom replied, “Lizzy, but what if you do? What if this experience turns out to be best part of college?” And so, with a little push from my mom, I took a leap of faith - and I never looked back.On November 9 2013, I signed the charter for Eta Omega, and fully entered into a sisterhood that forever changed my life. It turns out that moms are sometimes right, and a little faith and had work can give you the most rewarding experiences.
As Eta Omega celebrates its third birthday, I cannot help but feel pride for all the ways this chapter has grown. We started as a chapter of “strangers” - a bunch of women who were in one room because the idea of being apart of something new and being an agent for change was appealing. We have turned into a sisterhood, a network of more than 200 women who share common ideals and who support one another. We built the foundation for friendship and leadership that I hope continues to grow and evolve each year.
Our growth did not stop there, however. The women who have pledged themselves to Kappa Alpha Theta at Saint Louis University have grown in their dedication not only to the University but also to the fraternity ideals as a whole. I am amazed at the inspiring women that fill this chapter as they act as agents for change within the community. I am proud to be surrounded by women who take a stand for what they believe in. This dedication to the University and the living out of the ideals of the fraternity is something that truly fills me with pride.
As senior thinking about the birthday of Kappa Alpha Theta at Saint Louis University, I think of the younger members and the type of legacy that they will continue to build upon. I see the dedication of the juniors running for leadership positions within the chapter. I see the love of a sophomore who wants nothing more than to continue to build their skill set and friendships within the chapter. And I see the excitement of a freshman, who has the next four years to be a part of something truly special. I look at these women and cannot help but be filled with pride for their dedication to one another and to the chapter. Seniors, don’t worry I haven’t forgotten you. What a crazy few years it has been. Through all the highs and lows, I feel lucky to have gotten to know each one of these women. We have grown from girls into women. From freshman not knowing where life would take us, to women with a purpose and dedication. Thank you to Theta for allowing this growth.
Happy Birthday Eta Omega, may you continue to flourish and grow. I could not be more proud to be a member of this chapter and I hope that this organization continues to change the lives of each women involved.
Throughout the past 3 years at SLU, the Eta Omega chapter has accomplished great things. Last year, we raised over $6,000 for Voices for Children through our philanthropy week and our annual fundraising event, Cakes for CASA. Each semester, members complete around 2,000 hours of service. Last year, we were crowned Greek Week Champions, raised over $800 and donated over 1000 cans along side Tau Kappa Epsilon and Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternities. Additionally, we were nominated for Outstanding Student Organization at the Saint Louis University’s Leadership and Service Awards and achieved Bronze Kite status within Kappa Alpha Theta. However, it is not only achievements that make us who we are as an organization - it is our friendship and sisterhood. Happy Birthday Eta Omega! Here’s to many more years.
This past weekend, the sisters of Eta Omega enjoyed a fun and relaxing Fall retreat to Camp Wyman in Wildwood, MO. We headed out in the afternoon on Saturday.
We spent the most of the day playing different rounds of games with our retreat groups. After all 10 rounds of games, we changed and headed up the hill for a fall photoshoot (even though it was almost 80 degrees outside!). After our photoshoot, we went inside the dining hall to have a delicious taco dinner.
After dinner, each retreat group got up in front of all their sisters and performed hilarious and embarrassing skits that were prepared throughout the day. After enjoying the entertaining skits, the sisters of Eta Omega spent some time reflecting, sharing with our sisters, and writing notes of affirmation to put in each other’s brag bags for them to read later. We ended the night with roasting marshmallows, eating s’mores, and sitting around the campfire.
Early Sunday morning, after breakfast, each person was given a superlative to take home with them. Once we were all packed up and after we sang and danced around the dining hall for a little bit, it was time to say goodbye to Camp Wyman and climb on the bus to head back to SLU. This retreat built strong bonds, brought us closer together as a chapter, and created memories that will last a lifetime.
On Saturday, October 1st, Theta celebrated their first sisterhood with the new members! Almost everyone in the chapter took the trip out to the Eckert’s Farm in Belleville, Illinois. We spent the afternoon picking apples from the trees, eating apples, taking pictures, and getting to know our sisters. Some women even decided to climb the trees to get the best apples at the top with some sisterly support!
Besides our first semi-formal dance, Black and Gold, which took place the Thursday before this sisterhood, this was the first opportunity for the initiated members to get to know the new members during a planned Theta event. With long morning of searching for the best apples and nudging our way through the crowded Country Store to get to the fudge and apple cider doughnuts, the Theta members had a fun and delicious time during this sisterhood! We also have a lot of cute pictures to help commemorate our first sisterhood of the year with the new members!
In addition to this fun sisterhood, Sunday, October 9th was Theta’s Big/Little Reveal! Each big and little had half of a sign, and found one another by looking for the perfect match. After the new members found their bigs, they met the rest of their new families, ate cookies, and took new family tree photos. This opportunity to bond with our newest sisters has Theta members so excited for initiation! We cannot wait to welcome the new member class into Kappa Alpha Theta officially!
Dear Potential New Member,
Formal recruitment is right around the corner and you are undoubtedly starting to feel lots of excitement, but it’s absolutely normal to feel a bit nervous, too. Of course you want to make a good impression on all the chapters and find out which one is the best fit for you, but remember not to put too much pressure on yourself. In order to help you get the best out of your recruitment experience, we put together a list of tips to keep in mind as you begin on your journey:
If you keep these things in mind, hopefully you will get the most out of your recruitment experience. We are so excited to meet you and wish you the best of luck! See you soon!
The Women of Kappa Alpha Theta
There may be many indecisive SLU students out there who are currently wondering, "Why should I go Greek?" Don't worry, you're not alone. Whether you're a freshman new to campus or a junior who's not a part of Greek life currently, here are 10 reasons on why you should GO GREEK!
1. Everyone is different - After joining a sorority, you'll soon figure out that not everyone in a sorority is the same, like how it's portrayed in the movies. You will get to meet and become friends with a diverse group of girls that will change your life.
2. You'll never be bored - Don't have anything to do on a Tuesday night? I guarantee that some of your sisters would love to have a movie and pizza night! There will always be someone there to hang out with when you're bored.
3. You'll meet your potential bridesmaids - If you're the type of person that already has their whole wedding planned, going Greek will give you that missing piece of the puzzle - those bridesmaids that are also your sisters and will help make your special day magical!
4. Formals/dances - A great way to relieve some stress from a hard week of classes is dancing the night away with your sisters! And getting all dressed up in your big's apartment while singing loudly to musicals is always the best way to get ready for a dance.
5. There will always be someone to have your back - No matter what you're going through, there is probably someone within your sorority that has gone through something similar that will help you through it. There will always be someone to go to for any type of advice.
6. You'll be surprised by how many people you have things in common with - Even though sororities are full of diverse women, you would be surprised at how many people you can find little things in common with.
7. Participating in Philanthropies - Greek life gives you many opportunities to help give back to your community and competition for fundraising for your Philanthropy is always a fun experience!
8. Making connections - Joining a sorority will connect you with many different people with whom you can network, so you can find anything from a babysitting job to an internship opportunity.
9. Academic support - Many Greek organizations offer various academic support options that will help you keep your grades up and stay on top of your classes.
10. You'll gain sisters for a lifetime - Being in a sorority doesn't just end after college. You'll get to stay in touch with your sisters and keep that bond between you forever!
Lots of women were at first hesitant about going through recruitment but ended up loving it. Most likely, you'll end up loving the experience and finding your Greek home. Even if that doesn't happen, at least you got the chance to meet some incredible women and hopefully made a few new friends! There's little to lose, and so much to gain, so why not give it a shot? Hurry, registration closes Thursday, September 1st! Go to gogreek.slu.edu to sign up!
Maria Garcia is going to be a sophomore this coming year at Saint Louis University. She is from San Francisco, California and is majoring in Health Management with a minor in Marketing and Urban Poverty Studies. Maria is also our chapter's Service Chairman for this year! Here is her story:
"If you were to ask me in high school if I were to join a sorority, I would've laughed at the idea. Once I got to SLU, I didn’t realize how much I would appreciate being in Theta until I joined. My first semester of college was rough, I was Biology, Pre-med (just like most freshman) thousands of miles away from home, and it felt like everyone was friends with each other before coming to college. Needless to say, I was freaking out. On a whim, I decided to rush to branch out into the SLU community, and gain a better perspective of what sororities do.
When I got my bid to Theta, I was ecstatic to be part of a chapter full of wonderful women. These women became my role models, as well as, a place for me to be my goofy self. Whether it be studying until 1am for an exam, or listening to a sister when she’s down, I have loved all the memories I’ve created with my sisters. Kappa Alpha Theta is one of the best things I decided to do in college. This sisterhood has opened so many opportunities for me to meet other like-minded women who have helped me grow as a person and to become a leader. I can’t wait to continue my next three years at SLU with these incredible women!"
Abbey Curran just finished her first year at Saint Louis University and is studying Social Welfare and Justice. She is from Kansas City, MO. Here is her Theta story:
"When I walked into the room during that first day of recruitment, something just clicked. I’m still not exactly sure what I was looking for when I walked into Theta, but I think it was exactly what I needed.
My first two months, well, honestly first semester at SLU were rough. I was homesick almost all the time, my classes were good, but over all I was just having a hard time adjusting. Apart from the week long summer camps I went to over the summers, this was the longest time I’d ever spent away from my family. The sisterhood that I left behind at my all-girls Catholic high school, Saint Teresa’s Academy, wasn’t something I had anticipated missing that much, but compared to the strong sense of sisterhood I had felt there, SLU just felt kind of lonely.
Theta gave me the home and the sisterhood I was looking for. I know my sisters will always have my back. Whether it’s making sure I don’t get tackled in SLUper Bowl, bringing me tea when I’m sick, being a shoulder to cry on, or making sure I get out of bed for my 8:00 am class, my sisters always go out of their way to make me smile, and that’s all I could ever truly need in a sisterhood. I honestly couldn’t be more blessed to be sisters with some of the best."
We are the Eta Omega chapter of Kappa Alpha Theta at Saint Louis University. We were established on November 9th, 2013. We have over 180 wonderful sisters that are alike in many ways but all with unique interests. Our blog will highlight many of these.