There are eight social sororities and fraternities on campus. But there are also two lesser known service groups: APO, a service fraternity, and Gamma Sigma Sigma, a service sorority (although both are coed). Last night, Gamma Sigma Sigma held their Meet the Sisters event. Now I know, there are many reservations and assumptions that come with the “Greek” title, and I had many of my own. I chose Gamma Sig because not only did it look great on my resume, but it actually was a great deal of fun getting to know this wide variety of girls. My MIT (member-in-training) class even had three guys, the first in several years). But more than that, this organization is focused on serving the community through volunteer service for great local groups.
But last night was focused on getting to know the prospective, our future members and sisters. Yeah, that sounds a little cheesy, and even I was hesitant to go, what with the mounting homework teachers continue to thrust my way. The theme “Welcome to the Wild” had everyone dressed up in colorful and crazy prints, from pink leopard-spotted leggings to cheetah fur hats and every color of the rainbow in our Gamma Sigma Sigma lettered shirts. With food, snacks, and the latest top 40 pop songs playing in the background, students from all grades filtered in. A jungle path was laid out on the floor for interested students to walk along, with current members standing at each point to answer any and all questions. Afterwards, we played the classic “Rock, Tree, Bridge” for a little friendly competition. Conveniently, each team one once, which didn’t exactly appease my competitive nature, but it was a great way to end the night.
The great part about Gamma Sig is getting to know people from all of the nitches and groups across McDaniel Campus that I wouldn’t normally have gotten to meet. From girls (and guys) involved in other Greek organizations, sports teams, various majors, and a number of clubs, the people are all unique. I couldn’t ask for a greater college experience and I’m excited for our new members.
I made a difference in the lives of other today, and while it was a little physically painful, I felt great contributing to such a wonderful cause! Why did I subject myself to pain? I wanted to give blood!
McDaniel has at least one to two blood drives per semester, and for me, blood drives on campus are the most convenient way to give blood.
I made an appointment at a sign-up table outside of Glar a few days ago, and at 3:30 today, I was sitting in the Forum reading an information packet about blood donation while hydrating myself with a bottle of water that was provided.
At any Red Cross blood drive, you’ll be screened before you can donate. You’ll have to answer questions about yourself, your health, and even your travel history, and you’ll have to give a small blood sample to check to see if your iron level is high enough to donate on that particular day. I often don’t make it past the iron test, so I don’t always get to give blood, but today, I was lucky! My iron level was high enough on the first try, and I was able to give blood for the second time in my life!
The process of giving blood went well and before I knew it, I was eating tasty post-donation snacks. I was happy to have been able to contribute to such an important cause, and I wore my “I Make a Difference” sticker proudly to dinner, in hopes that it might inspire others to give blood. Perhaps I’ve even inspired you to give : )
Hopefully, I’ll be able to donate some more when the next blood drive rolls around!
I must have been crazy when I said I would be the chair of this event. I had no idea how much work was really involved with putting on an event that included chapters from all over the district and 5 service projects all happening at once. The Service Day this past Saturday went better than I could have imagined. We had 5 projects going on all at the same time to support Gamma Sig’s 5 national service partners and we had chapters from Delaware and North Carolina come to help us out. The weather was gorgeous and so many of the members of McDaniel’s chapter came out to support the event whether it was just by dropping by for a few minutes, volunteering or participating.
We had the visiting chapters bring two of the five projects. One brought bandanna decorating. We decorated bandannas to donate to the people of American Cancer Society in hopes of brightening some people’s day. The other chapter brought Prize Balloons. You bought a balloon for a dollar and then popped it to see if you had a prize inside. I unfortunately did not receive a prize. Our chapter was in charge of the rest. We put together a lemonade stand and the proceeds will be combined with the Penny Wars to go to Alex’s Lemonade Stand to help with childhood cancer, a raffle for Mothers Against Drunk Driving. We went around town to mothers that own businesses and collected donations to the raffle. Our main event, however, was the life-size Monopoly game that we opened up to the campus. All together the event raised over $400 for our service partners!
I am so grateful to the wonderful group of people I had working with me on the event. I never could have done it without them. They are all hard workers and devoted to serving others which is exactly what Gamma Sig is all about. I’ve already heard of people wanting to make the event an annual thing and I will help them in any way I possibly can. The level of importance the students at McDaniel put on community service makes me smile every time I think about it. It’s one of the things I love best about being a student leader on campus.
This weekend, my sorority, Gamma Sigma Sigma held it’s first ever district event. The chapter hosted two other chapters in a Day of Service. Most of the details for this large day of service were planned by my little, Whitney. As I watched the event come together piece by piece, I could not have been prouder to call her my little. The day of service had a mission: to serve or raise money for each of our five Service Partners, so naturally, we had to come up with five different service projects. We had a lemonade stand for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, a raffle for Mothers Against Drunk Driving, prize balloons for March of Dimes, bandanna decorating for the American Cancer Society, and a life-sized Monopoly game for American Red Cross. The monopoly game was not regular Monopoly though-it was McNopoly! Monopoly McDaniel style!
Whitney and I had so much fun coming up with ideas for what would be on each square, so we could tie it all together and make it McDaniel themed. Then, with the help of some other sisters, we managed to take two pieces of blank canvas and turn it into a Monopoly board. The entire process was fasctnating. It was so much fun to see it go from the canvas, to a bunch of lines drawn in pencil to the full-scale board in color. Not to mention, I loved watching other people have fun playing the game that we created. We really had the support of other organizations on campus, since they came and played Monopoly to help us raise money. The Monopoly game itself raised $200 for the American Red Cross, and we’re hoping to give it to the Hurricane Relief Fund when we donate it.
Overall, the day was super successful! We raised over $400 for our five service partners and had a blast doing it! I loved bonding with my sisters from other chapters while being able to raise money to help others!
Fundraising is a huge thing for clubs and organizations on campus. Everyday you walk by Glar, there’s always at least one group fundraising for this cause or that. This week, both groups I am a member of had fundraisers going on. Gamma Sig did a Penny Wars and pitted the classes against each other to raise money for one of our National Service Partners, Alex’s Lemonade Stand. I had the privilege of sitting at the table harassing people to put silver coins in the Senior’s bucket. The competition got very heated and the Freshman ended up winning. The snuck past everyone else, which just isn’t fair. We plan to combine the money we made there with the money we will make from the lemonade stand at Service Day this coming weekend and give one big donation to the organization.
Vagina Monologues also had a fundraiser going in front of Glar to raise money for the actual cost of our show in February. We had a few raffle baskets and gift cards donated by places, people and companies all over town that we raffled off all week. Also at the table we had a race going between Dr. Casey and a few other higher-up on campus. People were to donate spare change to the person they wanted to see get pied in the face. Dr. Casey, Dean Gerl, Dean Towle, Michael Robbins and Christine Workman all got very into the competition between each other. All together the fundraiser made over $200! Dr. Casey alone raised over $90. Yes, he was the one to get pied in the face. Because of Hurricane Sandy, we had to push back the actual pieing till the week after next to accommodate Dr. Casey’s schedule, but it will all be worth it.
I love participating in fundraisers on campus. As organization leaders, we all understand how difficult it is to get people to care about causes or to shell out some money to support the causes. Since we’re such a small school, it’s even harder because most of us are involved with multiple organizations and we are all still college kids on a college budget. So instead of giving up we find creative and fun ways to raise money. I mean, what other college president would allow the students to pie him in the face for charity? I love the opportunities these organizations give us. It helps us feel like we are doing our part to make this world a better place.
I recently applied for a prestigious award called The Duke of Edinburgh Award. To receive this award I am required to fulfill certain requirements to receive my medal. It is an award to showcase well-rounded students. You have to display your dedication to community service, physical fitness, a special talent and an adventurous journey. In order to receive the bronze medal award I must complete three months of community service, physical fitness and a special talent. I must also complete an overnight adventure. Then I will be choosing one of the three elements to continue for another three months. I am honored to be considered for this award and I am excited to begin all my requirements.
I will be using my completed service hours with Gamma Sigma Sigma for my community service requirement, three hours of dance a week for my physical fitness requirement, and mastering family recipes as my special talent. In April I will be completing my adventurous journey by staying the entire night at our twelve hour Relay for Life event for American Cancer Society hosted by the school. After the three months are up, I will have to choose which element I am going to continue keeping track of. I’m sure none of them will completely escape my life, but I will have to choose one to focus on.
I am really excited about the opportunity this award is giving me. It is giving me as excuse to learn all the family recipes I have admired since childhood and it is pushing me to do more with the community and keep myself healthy throughout the school year. I think this award is a great opportunity for any student. It forces them to focus on things other than homework and school in their crazy busy lives. I know my calendar is jam packed already but I’m willing to add a few hours every week to make sure I stay a well-rounded person that can be a role model for future students of McDaniel College.