Tag: sorority

Thoughts You Have When You Take A Little

Miranda PrescottA&E Correspondent

It’s that time of the year again, people. The time of the year where window paint and streamers decorate cars of young women who have just been invited to join a strong sisterhood that aligns with her values.

That’s right. It’s Big-Little Week season.

For those who may be unfamiliar with the term, Big-Little Week is something primarily Greek organizations will do to shower their newest members with love and gifts. Here, the “Big” is an older member that is their to mentor the new member throughout the rest of their time in the organization. They remain anonymous until a specific reveal day, usually three or four days after gift-giving.

Considering the fact that, at the time this article goes live, I would have been revealed to my first sorority “little,” my second over two organizations, I figured I would let you in on how I prepared with three thoughts I had going into the week.

Keep in mind, if any of these sound like I am complaining, I am not. Getting a little is one of the most special times you could ask for in college. Is it a lot of work? Absolutely. But I would not trade it for the world.

  1.       I am probably a terrible liar.

I have not been that bad at it, honestly. I didn’t tell my first little I was his big until five months after I found out I was his big. Two weeks didn’t seem like that major of a deal, in hindsight. However, I believe I have been successful thus far. At the time of writing this, on the first day of our Big-Little Week, I am proud to say that I am “two for two” in this whole lying game. Typically, this is something I shouldn’t be proud of, but considering that I am the world’s worst at keeping secrets, it is a personal win.

  1.       I never want to see a paintbrush ever again.

With Big-Little Week, one of the main presents littles will get is hand-painted canvases. There’s usually 10 to 12 given throughout the week. This may also include more crafts which require, you guessed it, more painting. Fun fact: being left-handed and painting is not really the best combination. I can not tell you how many canvases I had to restart on because my hand kept smearing the paint. I will say though, I forgot how relaxing painting could be. That is, until my hand smeared the paint for the third time on the same one.

  1.       This is truly the best time of the year.

In this moment, I do not know how my little is going to react to their gifts. I have not given her anything yet at the time I am writing this article. However, with the excitement she has gotten with every anonymous text I send or post I make on the Instagram I created as her big, I can only imagine that this excitement will carry over for the rest of the week, and the rest of her time in college.

Alpha Omicron Pi uses Mardi Gras to raise funds for arthritis foundation

Alpha Omnicron Pi's 2019 Mardi Gras Parade
Grace Cockrell/JSU
JSU Students march in the 2019 Alpha Omicron Pi Mardi Gras Parade

Patrick Yim, Special to the Chanticleer

In March, the sisters of the Delta Epsilon Chapter of  Alpha Omicron Pi gathered together with friends and community members to celebrate Mardi Gras. They also worked to raise funds for their organization’s national philanthropy, the Arthritis National Research Foundation.

What is the Arthritis National Research Foundation? The ANRF is a nonprofit organization that services to individuals dealing with the struggles of arthritis. They also work to research ways to combat the issue and hopefully find a cure.

While this is only the second year that the sorority has done a Mardi Gras festival and parade, they still received great support in their endeavors raising a finally total of 12,487 dollars, with twelve different individuals and organizations supporting in the parade, and 150 to 200 people in attendance at the parade and festival.

“Funds were raised in multiple different ways,” explained current philanthropy chair for the sorority chapter,” Taylor Anne Beckham. “Our main source of money came through Crowd Change donations; however, we also sold tickets for gumbo plates, and organizations paid to participate in the parade. The Mardi Gras King and Queen contestants also helped to contribute over 3,500 dollars to our overall amount raised. At the celebration, we sold raffle tickets, and families purchased bounce house wristbands, face painting sessions, and delicious cotton candy [made by the members].”

In their first year, the chapter raised around 9,000 dollars. This is a pretty sizeable accomplishment, especially for a first attempt.

“If we can increase our amount every year, I am confident we can impact the lives of many!”

When people come together for a cause, those on the outside sometimes wonder, why do they do it, is it worth it, or what’s the point? Here is what Beckham had to say.

“I personally believe it is important to pour love and compassion into your surrounding community no matter where you live. I grew up in a small Tennessee town where everyone worked together cohesively for the betterment of the community, school, and each other. I truly believe that one cannot succeed without the help of another! I want to give back not only to the Arthritis Foundation but also to JSU and the Jacksonville community because they have given so much to me!”

Whatever the cause may be, remember, that you can make a difference. The important thing is that you did something to help.

Going Greek: questions, answers, myths and horror stories

First things first, let me say I really dislike the word “frat.”

I am part of a fraternity and a proud member of the fraternity and sorority community here at Jacksonville State University. There are some really great organizations that make up the Greek community at JSU. It is an incredible experience to be a part of a community that really seems to “get it.”

This being said, things have not always been perfect for any of JSU’s Greek organizations.

In light of recent events in Michigan, where members of six fraternities and sororities caused almost $75,000.00 in damages at a hotel resort, one may wonder if all fraternities and sororities do is drink, party, fight and distroy things.

Besides, if you are a member of a fraternity or sorority all we really joined for was to pay for our friends, right?

This couldn’t be further from the truth.

Just because some fraternities and sororities mess up and land in the national news doesn’t mean we’re all that way. In fact, the many great things we do never seem to make the front page or get mentioned in the media world.

To the outsider, it seems that the money paid just allows someone to have friends that all wear boots, Wranglers and Polo shirts. To the insider, I know that I have over 200,000 living members in just my fraternity that I can call on no matter where I am in the world and they will help me. They will help me if I had a flat tire, or will even help me if I need to find a job after graduation. In fact, I have had two brothers to recently graduate and are gainfully employed because of the connections they made while being an active member of Sigma Nu here at JSU.

Each of the following Greek organizations is part of the IFC (Interfraternity Council) here at Jacksonville State University, each with their own philanthropic initiatives. Each Greek organization here on campus stands for a prominent cause and does not only to better the community, but also the brother in the organization.

Delta Chi- “The V Foundation”

Kappa Alpha Order- “MDA”

Kappa Sigma- “A Greater Cause”

Pi Kappa Phi – “The Ability Experience” formerly known as “PUSH America”

Sigma Nu – “Helping Hands Initiative”

Sigma Phi Epsilon- “YouthAids,” and

“T.A.K.E. Defense”

Tau Delta Phi (Colony)- “Active Minds”

If research is done, one will find that being a member of a Greek organization is much deeper than just partying.

For the past two years that I have been an active member of my organization, the fraternities and sororities have been a part of a Greek unity clean-up day here in Jacksonville. This has made a huge impact on the community. The mayor, city council, members of the community and university leaders have all taken note that we can all come together to enrich the community and make sure that we are doing our part to leave it better than we found it. If you are interested in learning more about the Greek community here at JSU, you are able to visit http://www.jsu.edu/studentlife/greek/. Here one can find a lot of information about our Greek community and all of the organizations that make it what it is today.

It is my hope that whoever reads this realizes that being a member of a Greek organization enriches ones life so much. It is hard to fully grasp unless one is a member, but know that we really do try to live above the standard and set our members up for a much more successful life once leaving college. The connections made are invaluable and experiences will be made that last a lifetime. I would ask that if you truly want to know more about fraternity and sorority life, that you take time to speak with a member of the community or go to the Office of Student Life and speak with Kristen Smith, Assistant Director for Fraternity and Sorority Life.

Kenneth Smith
Staff Writer