Today is the 146th anniversary of the founding of my sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta.
Even as a woman who loves history, it’s hard to imagine the world that Bettie, Alice, Hannah, and Bettie lived in. A world in which it was unusual for women to pursue higher education, let alone see a woman as a front runner for President of the United States.
No matter what challenges these women faced though, they have been changing the lives of women from the moment Bettie Locke Hamilton initiated her self in the mirror to the moment our four founders revealed the first Greek-letter fraternity known among women to the larger Asbury campus, Kappa Alpha Theta has been a group of leading women. Its why I love the rebranding that the fraternity unveiled two years ago, and have the video embedded below.
When I received by bid to join Kappa Alpha Theta, I did not realize the immense impact this organization would have on my life. While those four years in college were not always easy, I am thankful for the joys and the pains because those experiences molded my character and helped shape the way I view the world.
I am grateful that following graduation, I was able to jump in to the Colorado Springs alumna group and begin service as an advisor to the collegians at Colorado College. I cherished the friendships I formed with sisters from around the country and across generations. I had the fortunate experience of being an advisor to a chapter that was similar in size to the one I was a collegian in, that experienced similar growing pains to what I had experienced. To be able to see those collegians work through similar experiences to what my sisters and I worked through gave me greater respect for the advisors we had guiding us. It allowed me to see the circular relationship that exists when you invest into Theta beyond your college experience.
We always used to say that you get out of Theta what you put into it, and that Theta is for a lifetime. I still hold both sentiments to be true, even in this time of not being involved. Living in southeast Idaho, the closest alumna chapter is in Boise and the closest college chapter is in Moscow, so neither are a feasible place for me to get involved with.
As I get older, I am trying to figure out what it means to be a leading woman in my day to day life. When i think about the legacy I want to leave, I want people to remember my kindness and compassion, but I also want to be thought of a leading woman who was active in helping others and in lifting up her community. It’s a phrase that connects my past to my present and my future and one that will always remind me to be thankful to those four women at Indiana Asbury who decided to change their lives and the lives of all the women who came after them.
So, today I say thank you to Bettie, Bettie, Alice and Hannah.