T O DAY ’ S F R I E N D S , T O M O R R OW ’ S L E A D E R S , F O R E V E R I N S E R V I C E
SERVING JOY TO KOSOVO
SERVE-A-THON AND NATIONAL SERVICE WEEK
DISTRICT SUMMIT DATES
VOLUME 50 | 02
The Chevron is a quarterly newsletter
CORNER BE the Change
produced for Omega Phi Alpha National Service Sorority alumnae and active chapters. National Executive Board Members President | Jan Titsworth VP Communications | Thea Moritz VP Finance | Michelle Brannon VP Lifetime Membership | Suzy McTaggart VP Programs | Andie Hixson Chevron Editors Editor | Thea Moritz Edirorial Director | Gabie Kur Layout Editor | Shelley Lai Copy Editor | Donna Pintek Writers | Stasia Charter, Catherine Ferrell, Mackenzie Garretson Graves, Morgan Mills, Natalie Pita Distribution Dates and Deadlines October 1 | due August 15 January 1 | due November 15
Childhood obesity has become a worldwide epidemic. Experts at the World Health Organization estimate that there are 43 million overweight children under the age of five. By 2020, more than 60 percent of worldwide diseases will be directly associated with obesity. At the company where I work, the purpose statement is: “Making the world a healthier place one person at a time.” When we think of the President’s Project, we often think about making an impact as a group through an event or organized collection of some sort. Let’s make this really personal and focus on how each of us can be a role model for the children in our lives. After all, Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Think of a child whom you love. Now, consider how you can set an example and help demonstrate how they can integrate healthy choices into their life. Here are some ways to get started.
April 1 | due February 15 July 1 | due May 15 Submissions If you would like to submit a feature story about an alumna or a service project happening at your chapter, please email it to:
Encourage a healthy breakfast. Eating breakfast regularly reduces the risk of obesity and improves physical activity behaviors. Leave the sugary cereals behind and help kids choose foods with protein and fiber to keep them full longer.
Limit screen time. Between TV shows, video games, social media, and everything else on a tablet or smartphone, today’s children are more sedentary than previous generations. For some kids, devices are becoming an addiction. The foundation of emotional wellbeing is a true connectedness to the people in your life—family and friends who support good decisions. Make a commitment to limit screen time together and spend that extra time jointly doing a hobby or serving the community. Get active! Young people between the ages of 6 and 17 (and the rest of us!) should be active for at least 30 minutes—60 minutes is ideal—every day. Activity doesn’t have to be through an organized sport or at the gym. Try dancing, rollerblading, riding bikes, or taking a hike together. You could practice karate or yoga or head to the playground. The important thing is that you’re up and moving!
firstname.lastname@example.org Please send photos in 300dpi JPG format. National Office Mailing Address Omega Phi Alpha National Office PO Box 955 East Lyme, CT 06333 Official National Website omegaphialpha.org
Plan and prepare meals together. Families spend about 40 percent of their food dollars away from home, often eating portions that are too large and high in calories. We’re all busy. Set a goal to prepare just one more meal at home, and involve a child you love in an age-appropriate way. Look through recipe books or blogs together. When kids become part of the decision-making, they are more likely to try new things.
Whether a child looks up to you as a parent, sibling, relative, neighbor, nanny, or friend, help them create a brighter, healthier future. It will benefit both of you! Jan Titsworth (Delta), National President
Contact List To request a list of all sorority officers, appointments and chapters, please email email@example.com Update Your Contact Information
members.omegaphialpha.org @OmegaPhiAlpha @ophia67 Omega Phi Alpha National Service Sorority /Omega_Phi_Alpha /add/ophia67
On the cover: Members of the national leadership team collected school supplies and books to send to second grade students at the American School of Kosova. The students were ecstatic to receive their own special goody bags.
SERVING UP A CHALLENGE FOR NATIONAL SERVICE WEEK The first week of November holds special meaning for Omega Phi Alpha. Recognized as National Service Week, this is a week dedicated to programs that unite members in support of their communities. This year, from November 4–12, several OPA chapters participated in Serve-A-Thon, a service competition that challenges chapters to perform the greatest number of service hours. Five chapters participated in the ServeA-Thon, including Nu, Upsilon, Alpha Beta, Alpha Theta, and Alpha Pi. Each chapter completed a hands-on service project and asked alumnae to sponsor individual sisters for up to five hours of service at the current federal minimum wage rate ($7.25/ hour, up to a maximum of $36.25 per sponsored
Serve-A-Thon Highlights Nu (Georgia Tech)—“DogFest Walk & Roll.” Raised funds for Canine Companions to transform the lives of people with disabilities using a cold nose and a warm heart. Also “Habitat for Humanity Women Build.” Women of Atlanta gathered to help combat unsafe and unaffordable housing.
Upsilon (University of Louisiana at Lafayette)— “Helping Hands at the Children’s Museum of Acadiana”
sister). Money raised was sent to the chapter’s national treasury to supplement the chapter’s convention travel. Serve-A-Thon offers an excellent way for alumnae to give back to active chapters and support their service efforts. While active members are making a difference in their communities, alumnae can help make a difference too. Upsilon Chapter signed up for Serve-A-Thon because none of its current members had been able to participate before. Alpha Pi Chapter participated because they “wanted to give our alumnae an opportunity to stay involved with our chapter.” Alumnae of Alpha, Gamma, Delta, and Sigma chapters hope to see their chapters participate next year, so these alums
National Service Week Highlights
Gamma (Eastern Michigan University)—“Operation Christmas Child.” Packed shoeboxes for children to open for Christmas. “We volunteer to help this organization every year, and it leaves us feeling festive, grateful, and blessed.”
Sigma (University of TennesseeChattanooga)—“Lantern at Morning Pointe.” Engaged with residents at an Alzheimer’s facility by playing games and helping with daily activities. Tau (University of TexasAustin) —“Reema Foundation.” Raised money for nonprofit organization that brings joyful experiences to disadvantaged children, nurturing their emotional spirit. wore these extra clothes and at each half-mile marker, peeled back a layer to donate the clothes.
Phi (Arizona State University) —“Girl Scouts Badge Day.” Helped 100-plus Girl Scouts earn two badges and brightened each other’s day with Letters of Love.
Alpha Theta (Penn State)— “SEGA Fundraiser” Omicron (Auburn University) —“Trash Your Insecurities.” Encouraged students to write down their own insecurities and then
By Cecilee Dickens (Sigma), Marketing & PR director
throw them into a garbage can. “We want to celebrate that we are more than our insecurities while encouraging others.”
Delta (Texas A&M University) —“You’re the Bee’s Knees.” Participants wrote letters to more than 250 people needing encouragement.
Alpha Beta (University of Mississippi)—“The University of MS Serve-A-Thon”
Alpha Pi (West Virginia University)—“Suicide Awareness and Prevention”
can give back to the chapter that gave so much to them, although anyone can sponsor any sister or chapter. More than 25 alumnae pledged to be sponsors, and several more made donations. Most were asked to sponsor more than one sister. One alumna asked to sponsor a sister at all five participating chapters! By the end of the week, 36 active sisters were sponsored. Overall, the Serve-A-Thon raised more than $900. Nu Chapter had the most sponsors with 15. Upsilon Chapter had the highest percentage of participation and received a $50 bonus. Congratulations and thank you to all!
Chi (University of South Carolina)—“Polar Run 5K.” Participants brought five pieces of clothing to donate to The Salvation Army. The catch? They
Alpha Omicron (University of Florida)—Performed a service project every day of national service week: “Guardian Angels” (an organization that raises service dogs for veterans), “Sweet and Treat Night at Ronald McDonald House,” with a local Girl Scout troop, “Game Night” at a retirement home, “Jungle Friends” (organization that helps monkeys rescued from labs), and “Concession Stand,” where we worked and donated proceeds to a charity. WINTER 2018
OPA LEADERSHIP TEAM SERVES JOY TO KOSOVO
Did you ever complete a project that combined two areas of service? The national leadership team recently did. The national officers held their kickoff meeting in September to finish a project that involved nations of the world and service to the sisters. Career Development Coordinator Brittany Bartak (Alpha Kappa) recently accepted a teaching position in Kosovo in the Balkans region of Europe. But because of conflicts less than 20 years ago, school supplies are still sparse. To support students at the American School of Kosova, members of the national leadership team collected school supplies and books to send to Brittany’s second grade class. The team collected enough to send four boxes to Kosovo, which took about a month to arrive.
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“I am completely overwhelmed by the amount of love and support I received from my sorority. Teaching in a new country has been challenging, but it is so good to know that I have so many people supporting me in so many ways. I couldn’t ask for a better sisterhood. Thank you all so much, OPA!” said Brittany after she opened the boxes. The packages included enough supplies and books for the entire class. In addition, each student received a goody bag that included fancy pencils, fun shaped erasers, a pair of new shoelaces, a handwritten note, and glue sticks. Brittany also received her own goody bag with encouraging notes and some Skittles to remind her of home. “Kosovo is a developing country, so education is still building, and we need as much help as we can get. We are in an
English immersion school with good values and potential for students to get a good head start in a career when they leave. Currently, there are no books in English available, and we can’t really order online since Amazon doesn’t support us. Our library depends on donations from the school’s families and others. Since the teachers all have to travel from the U.S., we don’t have the room to bring our class libraries either.” Brittany also posted on Facebook, “I am in tears! You guys are the best. I couldn’t be more appreciative of all this.” OPA members and chapters can contact Brittany at firstname.lastname@example.org for information on how to send more supplies to her class. By Andie Hixson (Epsilon), VP Programs
National Leadership Team Meets in Atlanta
GOT A QUESTION? Contact a Chapter Support Coordinator Radha Sathe Manthe Chapter Support Director email@example.com Katie Dugan Barrett • Epsilon/Tau firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Jessica Toms • Alpha Rho firstname.lastname@example.org
At the end of September, Omega Phi Alpha’s new national team gathered in Atlanta, GA, to learn more about the new national structure, form bonds, and plan for the year—all to serve sisters everywhere. National President Jan Titsworth (Delta) began with a presentation about the new organizational structure of national executive board, directors, and coordinators, and their working relationships. The new OPA structure, effective since the close of Convention 2017 in June, has a lot of potential to develop and support vibrant, healthy chapters, as well as engage members for a lifetime. The national officers also learned about the processes the team uses to be successful and began shaping the Vision 2020 action plan for the year, as guided by the Vice President of Programs Andie Hixson (Epsilon). Key to the new structure is the customer service aspect of the chapter success coordinators (CSCs), who are the “go-to” people for chapters needing to get answers or guidance from the national organization. Chapter officers and actives can find a list of CSCs on OPA’s website and also on this page. Alumnae can contact regional alumnae activities coordinators (RAAC) for east, west, midwest, and south. They work closely with the alumnae membership director. Other sessions included communicating effectively internally, led by Technology Director Heather Pritchard (Nu) and Director of Administration Leann Williams (Nu). Vice President of Communications Thea Moritz (Beta) followed up with an overview of OPA’s brand and external communications. The officers also bonded with teambuilding activities and met in team groups. Vice President of Lifetime Membership Suzy McTaggart (Gamma) led a discussion about what to expect from each other before Jan closed the meeting with a review and reflect session. Everyone then sang the national song!
Psi Chapter Closes Now that the remaining members of Psi Chapter have graduated and transitioned to alumnae status, the National Executive Board has declared the chapter inactive. Founded in 1998, the chapter was located at Texas A&M Corpus Christi near Houston. Omega Phi Alpha recognizes the friendship, leadership, and service brought by these sisters over the years. The chapter and national leaders worked hard but were unable to turn the decline around, especially since the campus experienced devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey. Always remember that OPA alumnae are lifetime members, and everyone is encouraged to continue to stay connected with OPA sisters around the globe.
Marissa Hickel • Alpha Gamma/ Alpha Iota/Alpha Omicron email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Suniko Morales • Alpha Alpha/ Sigma/Upsilon firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Melanie Avila • Alpha/Omicron email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Amanda Lowry • Alpha Mu/Omega email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Bridget Flynn • Alpha Delta/ Alpha Lambda/Alpha Theta email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Katie Blanco • Mu/Alpha Pi firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Emily Haar • Alpha Xi/Alpha Zeta firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Georgia Fruendt • Gamma/Alpha Kappa firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Megan Gonzales • Delta/Phi firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Lekisha Paige • Chi/Alpha Beta firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Jess Humphries • Nu/Rho/Alpha Nu firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
INSIGNIA NATIONAL NEWS
DO’S & DON’TS As a national organization, we are branding ourselves to be recognized and become a household name everywhere. As individual chapters, the branding and standards may seem like a challenge, especially when the designs we envision for apparel may not be approved. However, it is important to understand why this is essential for OPA. OPA recently became licensed with the Affinity Group, GreekLicensing.com, which means the sorority will receive royalties from products that use our name properly. This is a great step for our sorority, because it ensures that OPA not only gets the money it is entitled to for use of our name, etc., but also ensures the development of a positive and consistent brand. “We want the visual brand identity for apparel to feature OPA’s logo, official letters, etc., plus have a homegrown, local feel,” explains Kasey Stevens, national insignia coordinator. Our brand consists of these logos, brand elements and Greek letters: THE PRIMARY LOGO:
DO—use a licensed vendor for all apparel using Omega Phi Alpha’s name. DON’T—use the coat of arms on any
clothing. Use the coat of arms only on official documents such as invitations, bids, certificates, and awards.
DO—Use the crest for formal occasions such as anniversaries or alumni events or products such as leather portfolios or high-end desk accessories.
DON’T—be discouraged if a design fails! Look over the branding and licensing rules and see how you can easily incorporate these into your designs!
DO—give yourself time to create a design
and follow licensing rules. Allow AT LEAST 30 DAYS before the delivery for the full process. Ask your vendor for an approval email.
DON’T—compromise the logos in any way.
DON’T—use an unlicensed vendor. DO—familiarize yourself with our sorority’s symbols and national colors. DON’T—be afraid to use them in your chapter’s insignia, social media, and website!
THE BRAND ELEMENTS:
THE GREEK LETTERS:
DO—request a customized logo for your chapter! For questions or to request high-resolution versions of the above, please contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. All information about the official branding guide can be found on our national website, under the Resources tab. Join OPA’s Rose Shop Insignia Facebook group for the latest insignia tips. By Morgan Mills (Alpha Gamma), OPA writer
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In an effort to strengthen our organization nationally, Omega Phi Alpha is researching how recruitment happens, and we are asking for your input. The lifetime membership team is piloting a new recruitment program with a few chapters that hold spring rush, in the hopes of expanding the program to more chapters in Fall 2018. The intention is to refocus OPA’s recruitment efforts on chapter health across the board, keeping the recruitment process fair, and making sure to bring in new members that fit best into the sisterhood and help strengthen the organization. Your input will take into account the great things chapters are doing that could be offered to everyone. Tell us anything special that stood out to you during your rush! Nothing is too small, and all ideas are welcome. Please submit your feedback online using this URL bit.ly/OPAPilot by January 20, 2018. For more information, please email email@example.com. Thank you! By Amanda Smith (Nu)
The national team put a lot of hard work and research into creating this brand.
DO—use the logos correctly. THE BEE:
TELL US WHAT YOU LIKED ABOUT RUSHING FOR OPA
SAVE THE DATE DIGGING FOR DIAMONDS April 28, 2018 Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas Details on hotel and activities to come soon!
FITNESS IS A MENTALITY As a student at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut, Pamela Riegel Smith (Beta) knew she wanted to enter into the service-oriented career of nursing. For Pamela, Omega Phi Alpha National Service Sorority was a perfect fit. Only a couple of sororities were in existence on her college campus at the time—one social sorority and one service sorority, and between her service-oriented perspective and meeting a resident ambassador in her dormitory (also a member of Omega Phi Alpha), Pamela felt drawn to rushing OPA. Pamela retains many fond memories of OPA—from singing songs around campus during pledging, bonding with her soonto-be-sisters on her last night as a pledge, and completing annual service projects, to traveling to Tennessee in a van with some of her Beta sisters to attend the national convention in 1988. Pamela has been a nurse for 28 years now, and serves in the critical care unit at the local hospital in Norwich, CT. Even though her days as an active sister sometimes seem far away, she continues to apply the principles of friendship, leadership, and service in her daily life. Through OPA, she made lifelong friends, including a friend who was in her wedding and whom she continues to keep in touch with, even though they live hundreds of miles apart. She feels that the service aspect is still a part of her: “I think I live that in the job that I do,” she said. “I’ve always had that. I like to be involved in raising money for things. I’m also really into the health aspect and encouraging people to live healthy lives.” Although working long hours—often on holidays and weekends—and spending time away from her family can be hard, Pamela couldn’t imagine doing anything other than being a nurse. “My favorite part is to actually see someone get better and know that something I did contributed to helping someone feel better,” Pamela said. “Even if they are terminal and aren’t going to get better, you can make them feel better, whether it’s getting a smile from a grumpy old man who never smiles,
Top photo: Beta Chapter alumna Pamela Riegel Smith participated in the New York City Marathon on Nov. 5, 2017, her 50th birthday.
comforting someone who is having a bad day, or comforting someone’s family.” Outside of work, Pamela enjoys encouraging other people to move their bodies on a regular basis, be more mindful about what they eat, and live a healthier lifestyle. In her work, she has seen obesity in both children and adults as a growing issue. “They have physical problems but it’s also an emotional problem. Nobody wants to weigh 500 pounds,” she said. “They’re special people just because I think that some people don’t see them. They just see the shell. They don’t see the person inside.” She hopes that active sisters working on the President’s Project of childhood obesity remember that it’s important that they not be judgmental, and that they help the children discover that being fit can be fun. “Exercise should be fun,” she said. “I’m a firm believer that fitness isn’t a size, it’s a mentality.” While she’s encouraging others to live healthy, she’s making sure she’s holding herself accountable as well. Pamela has run marathons in the past, and she recently celebrated her 50th birthday by running the New York City Marathon, the largest marathon in the world, which fell on her birthday, Nov. 5. Through her participation, she raised money for the Semper Fi Fund, an organization that provides immediate financial assistance and lifetime support to combat-wounded, critically ill, and catastrophically injured members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families. “I decided to do fundraising for the Semper Fi Fund because my son was in the U.S. Marine Corps and that made it very meaningful for me,” she said. Follow Pamela on social media for her fitness and healthy eating tips and positive inspiration. You can find her on Facebook as “Pamela K Riegel Smith” or on Instagram as “pamfindingfit.” Her website is pamsmithfitness.com. To learn more about the Semper Fi Fund, visit semperfifund.org. By Natalie Pita (Chi), OPA writer
Alumnae Chapter Reports OMEGA DELTA Nashville, TN Omega Delta sisters participated in the Gift Giveaway at Christian Cooperative Ministry in December. They also gathered for a Mexican fiesta at Don Julio’s and are planning a baby shower for Caitlin Carey Tran (Alpha Beta). Omega Delta members also carry out service on their own. Carrie Johnson (Epsilon) provided canned goods to CCM for the homeless. Joy Erikson McKenna (Epsilon) knitted winter hats, which also were distributed at CCM. Members plan to help “Grandparents without documentation” this Christmas. Many grandparents take care of their grandchildren because the parents are incarcerated or in rehab facilities. The grandparents do not have custody of the grandchildren yet or proper documentation for programs such as Angel Tree, but they still want a way to provide for the grandchildren for the holidays. The chapter will welcome a new Omega Man in February.
OMEGA TAU Houston, TX In October, Omega Tau sisters participated in the Walk for Mental Health Awareness in Houston. In December, they participated in the Christian Community Service Center Jingle Bell Express to help 2,500 children and their families celebrate the holidays with gifts and food. To find out more, email Omega_Tau@omegaphialpha.org. OMEGA IOTA Phoenix, AZ Omega Iota sisters launched a successful season of sisterhood and service. They joined Phi Chapter actives at ASU to assemble nutrition packs with Feed My Starving Children. They also bonded while creating beautiful works of art at a Pallet Party. Contact the chapter at Omega_Iota@omegaphialpha.org. Compiled by Stasia Charter (Alpha), OPA writer
In September, Omega Phi Alpha lifetime members gathered near Nashville, TN, to celebrate the life of former OPA Vice President of Finance Pamela M. McEwen (Epsilon) who passed away in August. Left to right, standing, Leanne Kinyon Kirby (Rho), Mandi Humphrey Roberson (Epsilon), Ginger McGarity (Nu/Phi), Trista Guzman (Phi). Seated Leann Williams (Nu), Andie Hixson (Epsilon), Susie Pack Larson (Mu), Carrie Johnson (Epsilon). National President Jan Titsworth (Delta) joined the sisters and spoke of Pamela’s OPA service and dedication during the celebration. The sisters sang the national song at her graveside, which led to lots of tears. Pamela’s family included a bee in the mausoleum where her urn was placed, so her place can be easily identified.
Sisters in Service: GAIN ing Respect and Giving Hope RADHA MANTHE (NU) Radha Manthe is on the board of directors for the Georgia Asylum and Immigration Network (GAIN). GAIN is a nonprofit organization that provides free legal assistance to immigrant victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, and other serious crimes, as well as to immigrant asylum seekers who are fleeing persecution in their home countries. Since 2005, GAIN has helped more than 4,000 men, women, and children through direct representation and through volunteer pro bono attorneys. Radha signed up to take a case as a volunteer pro bono attorney and has worked on several asylum cases, including for clients from the Central African Republic, Togo, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Radha loves being involved with GAIN, because she knows her work can help people from around the world. A map on the wall in the office with pushpins indicates where each client is from. Seeing those pins covering the map and touching every continent makes her feel like the time and efforts she gives to GAIN are worth it. Radha would be happy to talk to any Atlanta area alumnae who would like to get involved with GAIN. Volunteers with language skills are always needed to help with translation and interpretation, as well as attorneys who might be interested in taking on a case. To learn more about GAIN, visit georgiaasylum.org.
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Jackie Fitzella (Alpha Lambda) during the most recent Marion Medical Mission trip
JACKIE FITZELLA (ALPHA LAMBDA) Jackie Fitzella recently returned from a month-long trip to Africa, serving with the Marion Medical Mission. This organization assists with installing sustainable wells in communities that do not have direct access to clean water. Local communities start by
digging the wells and pouring the concrete themselves. Volunteers then help install the pipe and pump needed to access the water in the well. This mission trip helped build healthy relationships between locals and volunteers, as they worked side by side to help increase the quality of living for members in the community. The project also gave local members a sense of ownership because they were able to help out. Jackie says that within the two months volunteers were present, they installed 2,600 wells, which will give access to clean water to around 260,000 people. To find out more about this organization, visit the website at mmmwater.org. ASHLEY SMITH (PHI) Ashley Smith is the director for Dreams Come True. This is a local dream-granting organization in North Eastern Florida, which grants dreams to children who are battling life-threatening illnesses. Currently, Dreams Come True has granted more than 3,700 dreams, and Ashley is the person in charge of making sure those dreams—whether small or large—come true. In addition to organizing everything to make it all come together, Ashley handles the budgeting and other clerical tasks, but she says that this job has been very rewarding and that OPA has helped prepare her for it. For more about this organization, visit the website at dreamscometrue.org.
Active Chapter Reports Philanthropy Chair Alli Fried and President Catie Field at the Kisses 4 a Cause fundraiser
Three of our families! Bigs: Kaitlynn Whittaker, Abagael Minninger, and Katie Devore. Littles: Maddy Laugherty, Cassidy Morris, and Morgan Koger.
ALPHA Bowling Green State University Bowling Green, OH • Founded 1967 61 Actives/20 Potential new members Rush Theme: NFL President’s Project: Working with the Girl Scouts of Bowling Green to teach them a healthy lifestyle. Fall Service: Kisses 4 a Cause, which raised $253.25 for Pets for Vets within two days! Winter Service: Relay for Life, Aurora House, and spending time with the residents of Brookdale Nursing Home. Fun Fact: We are the leading fundraising team for Relay for Life. So far, we raised $1,853 of our $2,500 goal! Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org GAMMA Eastern Michigan University • Ypsilanti, MI Founded 1967/Re-chartered 1993 15 Actives/6 Potential new members Rush Theme: Born to Wander. Our rush shirts read, “Life takes you unexpected places, Omega Phi Alpha takes you home.” Our membership director, Adrianna Sputa, has some exciting things planned for rush, and we are excited to put all our efforts into recruiting for the spring semester. President’s Project: Teaming up with Girls on the Run to help plan brunches and activities for them.
Winter Service: Painting rocks and hiding them around our town for local children to find, “trick-or-treating” for UNICEF, teaming up with Alpha Phi Omega to make tie blankets for children, and our most popular service project: Operation Christmas Child, an annual project at which we fill shoeboxes with gifts for children who wouldn’t otherwise get Christmas gifts. Fun Fact: We held many fun socials, including a trip to a cider mill with a corn maze, and we have plans for a Friendsgiving and an amazing holiday party. Our semiformal is a trip to Detroit Zoo for the lights! The most exciting thing we did this semester was having an overnight retreat at a cabin at a state park. Contact: email@example.com DELTA Texas A&M University College Station, TX • Founded 1970 Rush Theme: New Bids on the Block President’s Project: Making snack packs for kids on a local swim team—including nutritional facts and information on the importance of eating healthy. Fall Service: Holding a sisterhood movie night, volunteering at Special Olympics held on campus, making hygiene kits for girls in underdeveloped countries, and You’re the Bee’s Knees (our second year!). We also helped organize Texas Reds, a festival in downtown, and Kyle Field clean up. Winter Service: Our President’s Project, and painting a house with Habitat for Humanity! Fun Fact: This is the second year we’ve done “You’re the Bee’s Knees” for anyone who needs inspiration/motivation around finals. We have an online form that anyone on campus can fill out. When we sent out the email this semester, we had 200 responses, some even from faculty and staff! We hope to continue this project in the future. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org EPSILON Tennessee Technological University Cookeville, TN • Founded 1973 Contact: email@example.com MU Middle Tennessee State University Murfreesboro, TN • Founded 1983 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org NU Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA • Founded 1988 39 Actives/9 Potential new members Rush Theme: Carnival President’s Project: Swim Healthy Snacks, and Notes of Encouragement.
Fall Service: Shakespeare’s Tavern, Boo at the Zoo, Medshare, Books for Africa, Café 458, Trees Atlanta, Furkids, DogFest, PCOS Symposium, Resse Center, Gigi’s Playhouse, Walk for Animals, and Taste of Atlanta. Winter Service: Continuing fall service projects, along with Swim Meet Volunteer. Fun Fact: We hosted the BOLT 5K Road Race to benefit PCOS. Contact: email@example.com OMICRON Auburn University Auburn, AL • Founded 1992 Rush Theme: Candy-themed Sugar Rush/ Home Sweet Home President’s Project: Recipe Cards: creating recipe cards for healthy, kid-friendly meals and giving these cards to the Community Market of East Alabama. Winter Service: Monarch Estates: spending time with residents of a retirement home. Rafiki Bracelets: purchasing bracelets to support Me to We organization. Secret Sister: sending secret notes and a small gift to another sister. Love Letters: writing notes of encouragement that are distributed around campus. Trash Your Insecurities/Love Yourself: insecurities are written down and thrown away, while positive attributes are posted on a banner. Sisterhood Potluck: each sister brings in a different food item to share. Dog Toys for Lee County Humane Society: Mental Health First Aid Kits: assembling items to relieve stress and anxiety and then giving the “kits” to Student Counseling Services at the university. Bubble Wrap: handing out bubble wrap to stressed students the week before finals so they can pop their stress away! Fun Fact: We have started inviting speakers from service organizations around campus to speak to us before chapter. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org RHO Western Kentucky University Bowling Green, KY • Founded 1993 Contact: email@example.com SIGMA University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Chattanooga, TN • Founded 1993 23 Actives/7 Potential new members Rush Theme: Sugar Rush. To promote our rush, we held a lollipop raffle/fundraiser in November. President’s Project: Partnering with The Salvation Army and helping build playgrounds as part of the Kaboom project. Winter Service: So far, our favorite project has been volunteering at Chambliss, a childcare center in Chattanooga that provides
CHAPTER REPORTS foster care and free childcare. Our sisters really bonded with the children there. Sigma Chapter also collected donations of hygiene supplies for Project 541, a nonprofit in Honduras started by a UTC alumna. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Fall Service: Suicide awareness, children Christmas boxes, helping with recovering students, helping the elderly, and Teach A Sister Fun Fact: Alpha Alpha’s mascot is the bumblebee, which is super cool! Contact: email@example.com
TAU University of Texas at Austin Austin, TX • Founded 1994 11 Actives/8 Potential new members Rush Theme: Kate Spade—BE OPHIA Fall Service: Participating in National Service Week, supporting the Reema Foundation, Longhorn Halloween, Big/Little Reveal, bake sale fundraiser, and supporting other campus organizations with their external events. Winter Service: Winter Casual, Alum questionnaire, and pledge activation! Fun Fact: For National Service Week, we chose to support a foundation that was founded by the family of one of our pledges (The Reema Foundation), which brings joyful experiences to disadvantaged children, and thereby nurtures their emotional spirit. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
ALPHA BETA University of Mississippi Oxford, MS • Founded 2003 Contact: email@example.com
UPSILON University of Louisiana at Lafayette Lafayette, LA • Founded 1997 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phi Sisterhood Retreat Fall 2017 Bid Day Fall 2017
PHI Arizona State University Tempe, AZ • Founded 1998 51 Actives/18 Potential new members Rush Theme: Galaxy President’s Project: A combination of renovating a community garden at an elementary school, and helping local Girl Scouts receive their “My Best Self” and “Fair Play” badges. Fall Service: Campus Date Harvest, StreetlightUSA, Letters of Love, The Welcome to America Project, and Special Olympics. Winter Service: We don’t have anything planned at this time, due to finals being the first week of December. Fun Fact: Our pledge class average on the National Test was a 98 percent! Contact: email@example.com
CHEVRON VOL 50 / 02
Chi Chapter hosted its sixth annual Polar Run 5K Chi’s rush theme: OPhiA is Out of This World!
CHI University of South Carolina Columbia, SC • Founded 1998 44 Actives/16 Potential new members Rush Theme: OPhiA is Out of This World! President’s Project: “Shake It into Shape” Partnering with local after-school programs to raise awareness about childhood obesity and introduce preventive measures. Each hour-long workshop consisted of a healthy snack, a physical activity, and a short, themed discussion about living well. Fall Service: Campus Staff Appreciation, Clothed in Hope, OPhiA goes Green, Step It Up for Sisterhood, and a Mental Health Awareness week at Ridgeview High School. Winter Service: Helping alum Katie Suggs by collecting cans for her second grade students in Myrtle Beach. Since she teaches at a Title 1 school, each student receives free breakfast and lunch. However, many don’t know where their next meal is coming from, especially during the weekend and holiday breaks. We’ve helped ease these worries. Fun Fact: We hosted our Sixth Annual Polar Run 5K. Clothing collected during the event gets donated to The Salvation Army. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org OMEGA Rutgers University—New Brunswick, NJ Founded 2000/Re-chartered 2015 Contact: email@example.com ALPHA ALPHA Northern Arizona University Flagstaff, AZ • Founded 2000 50 Actives/13 Potential new members Rush Theme: Wonder Woman
ALPHA GAMMA Oklahoma State University Stillwater, OK • Founded 2004 40 Actives/21 Potential new members Rush Theme: Ophia in Paradise President’s Project: Childhood Obesity Fall Service: Supporting the OSU women’s soccer team; Walk to End Alzheimer’s; Big Little Reveal; and our Alum event. Winter Service: Childhood obesity project and the Christmas party/sisterhood project to benefit the sisters in our chapter. Fun Fact: We have officially gone all the way through the Greek alphabet for our PNM classes so we are at Alpha Alpha now. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org ALPHA DELTA Georgia Southern University Statesboro, GA • Founded 2006 47 Actives/19 Potential new members Rush Theme: You’re the One That We Want President’s Project: Healthy Kids Fall Service: Statesboro Soup Kitchen, “Donut” Drink and Drive. Winter Service: Alternative Break Service Project at Carolina Tiger Rescue. Fun Fact: We won best banner during Georgia Southern Homecoming 2017. Contact: email@example.com ALPHA ZETA Kennesaw State University Kennesaw, GA • Founded 2006 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org ALPHA THETA Pennsylvania State University University Park, PA • Founded 2006 Contact: email@example.com ALPHA IOTA Notre Dame of Maryland University Baltimore, MD • Founded 2009 19 Actives Rush Theme: Disney President’s Project: Field Day to fight childhood obesity. Fall Service: Bra pong and lightly used bra drive, Field Day, Peru Book Drive, Field Night event, and a self-care seminar.
CHAPTER REPORTS Fun Fact: Everyone in the sorority has a sticker of one of our sisters, and they are posted all around campus. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org ALPHA KAPPA University of Kansas Lawrence, KS • Founded 2010 39 Actives/37 Potential new members Rush Theme: Happy Nu Year! President’s Project: Girl Scout Badge Night for troops in Lawrence. Fall Service: Hunger Awareness BINGO, Holiday Shop, “Just Food” Cooking Class, Della Lamb Community Services, and Special Olympics Sports Practices in Lawrence. Fun Fact: With our sisters at Alpha Gamma, we have decided to turn our Summit for next semester into a full, three-day weekend event. We can’t wait! Contact: email@example.com ALPHA LAMBDA North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC • Founded 2010 36 Actives/16 Potential new members Rush Theme: Under the Sea President’s Project: Holding Girl Scout Badge Day, in which the scouts earned a badge by participating in activities in cities that promote healthy living. They did various activities such as a mini workout, healthy eating, and making stress balls. Our chapter really enjoyed the hands-on engagement with the Girl Scouts. Fall Service: SOUL (Students for Organic, United Living) Garden, Operation Christmas Child, Secret Sister, Project Linus, Mental Health Talks, Fitness Hours, Agro-Eco Farm, and Miracle League (among many others). Winter Service: Since most of our sisters won’t be in the area, we will have a few days in which we plan on volunteering at the Second Chance Animal Shelter. Fun Fact: Our chapter mascot is a giraffe! One of our past pledge classes (Lambda) adopted a giraffe for our chapter. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org ALPHA MU Boston University Boston, MA • Founded 2011 47 Actives Rush Theme: OPhiA Air Travel! President’s Project: Childhood Obesity— providing healthy snacks for Pierce School 7th and 8th-grade musical. Fall Service: Providing treats for facilities staff at BU, Community Servings, Bake sale for United Puerto Rico, Letters to Troops, Making strides against Breast Cancer Walk, Samaritans 5K Walk/Run for suicide prevention.
Fun Fact: We have an awesome website: ophiabu.com Contact: email@example.com ALPHA NU Texas State University San Marcos, TX • Founded 2013 46 actives/16 potential new members Rush Theme: Floral, adding new sisters to our garden President’s Project: Boy’s and Girl’s Club Field Day Fall Service: Operation Christmas Child, Mental Health Awareness—Retirement Home Flower Pot painting, Hiking with Sisters, Postage for Professors, Care Packages for the homeless, Dunbar Park clean up. Winter Service: Starting to plan service projects and sisterhood events for the spring semester. Also, wrapping up the semester with our last few projects. Fun Fact: One of our service projects is in cooperation with Sights and Sounds, an annual holiday festival in San Marcos! Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org ALPHA XI University of Central Florida Orlando, FL • Founded 2014 57 Actives President’s Project: Creative School Fall Service: Zebra Coalition, To Knights with Love, Clean the World, and Orange You Happy. Fun Fact: We’re spending the day at Fun Spot for our retreat this semester, and doing tiedyed T-shirts to all match! Contact: email@example.com
Alpha Omicron Bid Day Fall 2017
ALPHA OMICRON University of Florida Gainesville, FL • Founded 2014 38 Actives/28 Potential new members Rush Theme: Service Is Written in Our Stars President’s Project: Volunteering with a local Girl Scout troop to teach them about healthy eating and exercise. We led a yoga session and a nutritious meal activity, all while having fun with the scouts. Fall Service: Climb for Cancer, Jungle Friends, Ronald McDonald House, Oak Hammocks Nursing Home, Guardian Angels, and a self-defense class. Winter Service: Volunteering with Best Buddies, Days for Girls, and much more!
Alpha Omicron members at the Climb for Cancer project
Alpha Omicron sisters at a self-defense class
Fun Fact: We held our Sisterhood Retreat at Camp Winona, a YMCA Camp. We got to bond through various fun activities. For our service project, we helped the camp clean up from the damage from Hurricane Irma. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org ALPHA PI West Virginia University Morgantown, WV • Founded 2014 65 Actives Rush Theme: 90’s Theme President’s Project: Hosting Field Day with a local preschool, which involved active games to get the kids moving. We also did a Field day with the Boys and Girls Club, which included active games, and a discussion about nutrition and health. Fall Service: Booth for Suicide Awareness and Prevention, Puppy Therapy on Campus, Halloween Party for Children’s Hospital, Trunk or Treat, and Fundraiser for Hurricane Relief. Winter Service: Morgantown’s Pantry Plus More, a nonprofit that provides food, hygiene items, school supplies, and other necessities in schools. Other projects include Days for Girls, Secret Santa, Letters of Encouragement, and a Christmas potluck dinner. Fun Fact: Our chapter has an obsession with cheese balls. We have to have two huge containers whenever we have any kind of lunch or dinner together. Another fun fact is that we all went to a pumpkin patch a few weeks ago to bond. Contact: email@example.com ALPHA RHO Virginia Polytechnic Institute Blacksburg, VA • Founded 2017 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Compiled by Catherine Ferrell (Alpha Gamma)
National Office PO Box 955 East Lyme, CT 06333 RETURN SERVICE REQUESTED
“BEE WHO YOU ARE” at DISTRICT SUMMIT 2018 A district summit is a daylong leadership training and fellowship retreat at which sisters participate in icebreakers, group activities, think tanks, traditions modules, and service projects. A number of district summits have been scheduled across the country. Whether you are an active member, LOA, alumna, pledge—whatever your status, we hope to see YOU at a district summit in 2018! The theme this year is “Bee Who You Are,” suggested by Lily Chan (Gamma). She writes, “I believe OPA is a sisterhood that nurtures our love for service and friendship. I’ve noticed that OPA is full of diverse personalities, backgrounds, orientation, color, and race, but together we are all sisters.” Check out the list below for tentative dates and locations. Venues and registration information to come soon. Blue Ridge Cactus Pine Liberty Peaches and Beaches Azalea Heartland Lone Star Bluegrass Colonial Founding Cajun Country
February 17 February 24 February 24 February 24 March 3 March 3 March 3 March 24 March 24 March 24 TBD
Statesville, NC Phoenix, AZ Chambersburg, PA Jacksonville, FL Newman/Carrollton, GA Lawrence, KS Elgin, TX Nashville, TN Bridgeport or New Haven, CT Bowling Green, OH
Questions? Email Learyn Miller (Sigma), district summit coordinator, at email@example.com.