Community

Developing the next group of Women in Alpha Sigma Tau

This year, during the Fall 2017 semester, I had the awesome opportunity to be the New Member Assistant for Alpha Sigma Tau. In this position I helped the New Member Educator guide our new members through a six-week process. During this process the new members did activities such as big little mixes to meet potential bigs, big little reveal to finally meet their big, quizzes to learn about Alpha Sigma Tau, meetings, and much more. It was wonderful being able to share my love for AST with the new women and help then also fall in love with this amazing organization.

This year we brought in 20 new women in the chapter through formal recruitment and continuous open bidding. Because of the two separate bidding processes we had two different groups of fall 17 one was initiated before Halloween and the other before Christmas. This presented a different challenge but together Hannah and I changed things up a bit and got all the new members everything they needed to be initiated.

At the end of every Fall semester, we elect new women into each position for this sorority. This year, after working extremely hard in the position as New Member Assistant, I was elected into the Director of New Member Education. I am so excited to be taking on this role and to continue to help the newest additions to my chapter grow. Being in this position as the Director will allow me to help new members through the initiation processes as well as the big little process. I also have so many new ideas for the processes and can wait to see the differences I can make. Likewise I have a wonderful assistant Kelli who will help the new members and myself. She is such a fantastic person and one of my good friends so together we will be a dynamic duo.

I am thrilled to watch our next group of women flourish within such a wonderful organization. So here’s to you Fall 17! I am so excited to welcome the next group of women ♥

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Service

Circle K

Circle K is a collegiate service based organization (not the gas station). It is a part of the Kiwanis family which is an international organization. In the Kiwanis family there is K-Kids, Builders Club, Key Club, Circle K, Action Club, and Kiwanis. I became a part of this group when I joined my high schools Key Club. I loved my experiences in key club especially being a chair on the District Board for Wisconsin Upper Michigan. When I came to Central, Sean a friend from home who was in Key Club with me told me about CKI here. He let me know when the meetings were and got me to start going. From there, I got more involved in the club and continued to be a part of the Kiwanis family.

Service Chair: For my freshman and sophomore year in college I have served as one of Central’s two service chairs for CKI. I had a fantastic co-chair John and we worked together to create different service opportunities for the club. One of the larger scale service projects we put on is 12 Hours of Service. For this we partner with different places to volunteer around Mt. Pleasant and do volunteer work for 12 hours. This year we went to the Humane Animal Society, Discovery Museum, and food pantry. Also, we did in house service like making blankets and dog toys. I really enjoyed planning 12 hours and helping out so many people in the Mt. Pleasant community in just one day.

President: At the end of this year I had the pleasure of being voted in as the next Circle K President. I am so excited to take on this role in an organization that has made me who I am today. Circle K has given me so much already and I am thrilled to be able to be in this leadership role. I will be working closely with the Michigan District Board and my E- Board to revamp weekly meetings and get more members.

Circle K has made me into the person I am today and I am so excited to continue to be a member of this organization.

Leadership Development

Competition Day {Behind the scenes}

A behind the scenes look at my LEAD Team

As recipients of the Leadership Advancement Scholarship, we all have requirements to meet every year. One of those requirements is to be on one of the many lead teams. A lead team is a group of LAS students who come together to plan a specific event(s) or make the program better. To name a few, there is the Diversity Lead Team, Grad Ball Lead Team, and my Lead team, Competition Day. This year I had the honor of serving on this lead team as the Sophomore Chair along with Hannah, the Junior chair and Bellal, the Senior chair. The three of us were in charge of our lead team and ultimately planning and executing Competition Day. Together, we spent months planning, having workshops, and getting other organizations involved to make this year the best Comp Day yet.

This year, we tried to shake the day up a bit and change things around to make it better. One of the biggest and more notable changes was moving the reception from a classroom into the Powers ballroom. Before this switch the reception was very cramped and hard to move around. As a result of the change, there was much more space to move around and talk with everyone. The switch made the reception less stressful and more enjoyable for everyone involved. Another change we made was having two workshops prior to competition day for the Student Guides and Interviews. This allowed us to go more in depth about our expectations for them and talk about how the day would play out. Also, with one of the workshops we focused on implicit bias and had a chance to discuss different aspects of that topic. Both of these switches were extremely instrumental in making this year’s Competition Day amazing.

Through being a lead team chair for competition day, I learned more about the LAS program and everything that goes into planning one of our biggest days of the year. There are so many different moving parts during the actual day such as the multiple student groups and parent groups. Also, we checked all of the rooms to make sure they were set up correctly and had everything we needed. Finally, we set up alternate dates for interviews for competitors who were unable to make it to competition day for various reasons.

For me, this has been one of the greatest experiences I have had here at Central and in the Leadership Institute. Helping plan a day where we are able to see the next leaders come to campus and help to grow the LAS program as well as the Leadership Institute was very special. The Leadership Advancement Program has given me so much these past two years and I am so excited to welcome the next group of leaders into the family.

Last but certainly not least, I am so grateful for the wonderful team I was able to work with for this event. Since it was my first year as a chair, most of my time was spent learning what to do. Bellal and Hannah helped me understand everything and we all supported one another. I look forward to working with Hannah as we take things up another notch and make the 2019 Comp Day even better!

Community

Leadership Safari 2017

My experience on the other side of Leadership Safari as a Guide

As an incoming freshman at Central Michigan, I participated in Leadership Safari. I enjoyed my experience as a participant and a few people urged me to apply for a staff position. Last fall, I applied for a position on the Leadership Safari Staff for 2017. Over the course of the next few months I went through an interview and four spring trainings in order to be chosen to be a guide. I was so excited when I first found out I would be a guide and from then on I could not wait for Safari. Fast forward a few months to August 15th, move in day for Safari staff. After move in came four days of training. We listened to different speakers, broke boards with our hands, did the challenge course, and went through everything we would be doing with our group during Safari week. We also spent these four days bonding with our Core teams. After the four days of training it was finally time to put our skills to use and welcome the incoming freshmen and transfer students to Central Michigan. Throughout the week of Safari, each guide had their own team of students to work with. My team was Team Aardvark and they were 10 very amazing humans. Together we did activities to open their minds, went to speakers, completed the challenge course and trust activities, and went to entertainment.

My lovely Enchanted Red Roses: First of all, I could not have asked for a better Core Team. Here’s a little about each person on Enchanted Rose Red and why they are fantastic human beings. Alli, you bring so much light into my life and I would not have gotten through Safari without you. From 1am runs to Ihop (which I hope to continue lol) to venting about life and our problems, you are wonderful. Ashley, you are one of the strongest people I know. All week you did amazing as a runner and I could not be more proud to have you as a friend, stay amazing. Becca, you are high key fabulous. You were always there to give advice even if you had a bad day. Just remember you are loved and amazing. Brendan, thank you for being a big brother to all of us. From walking with Alli and I home every night to making sure I went to bed at a decent time. Brendan, you are img_8837so cool and positive and having you in my life is amazing, especially seeing you on campus and having you instantly know I was stressed…and later you checked on me. THANKS! Cat, you are so supportive and compassionate. Having you as a Core Guide was honestly phenomenal and you did an outstanding job. Thank you for taking care of all of us and always being there to talk. Celeste, getting to know you at Leadershape and having you in my family cluster was the best. Then, having you in my core team was icing on the cake. You are such a strong human and I love how passionate you are. Thank you for being in my life. Dom, I wish we had more time with you and Maddie. BUT, the time you were with all of us was great. You were always so positive and bubbly and brought the group up when we had rough days. Thank you for being you. Garrett, your sass was one of my favorite things. You also were always there to give advice about Safari and how to make our teams more cohesive. Kathryn, thank you for being my sister from another sorority. I loved getting to know you and becoming close throughout the week. I can’t wait to see you throughout Greek Life and school in general. You are such an awesome human being and just remember that. Kee, you are so fabulous and I loved getting to know you during Safari. You always had wonderful advice for the group and kept your head up as well as our spirits up throughout the week. Kelsey, you are such a fun-loving individual. At every late night or early morning meeting you always brought a smile and warm words to wake us all up. Kylie, you are truly an amazing person, from running across the country to taking 10 incoming students under your wing and always staying calm. I am always amazed by you and I loved getting to know you during Safari. Lexi, thank you for being my friend for 52 years. I am so happy we spent the whole Safari together. I can’t imagine Safari without you and I am so happy this experience brought you into my life. Thanks for being my  friend and support, you are incredible. Maddie, thank you, thank you, thank you for saving my life lol. Besides that, you are a marvelous person and I am so glad you and I were able to bond. Randi, you are a remarkable human being. You have taught me so much about life and everything that comes along with it. Randi, I am so excited to see you flourish, because YOU ARE AMAZING. Thanks for lots of slushies and many more to come. Taylor, you are so bubbly and joyful. I loved how much you brought to the group and how you were always building everyone up. Stay wonderful and always know you have people here to support you. To all of you, I love you more than you can imagine and am so thankful you are all in my life. I always hear people talking about how being a guide brings you closer to people you may have never known and this is so true. Thank you for letting me be myself ♥

My amazing Aardvarks: You guys were the coolest Aardvarks this world has ever seen. I loved “boolin” around with you everyday even though I thought at first you were saying boomerang. You all made my first Safari as a guide unforgettable. Thanks for endless img_8810jokes, laughing all the time, being sassy, and dealing with me everyday. To all of you, never stop dreaming, firing up, and being true to yourself. I am so proud and blessed toknow all 10 of you phenomenal humans. Just know that I think… and know that you ten are the coolest, smartest, and most interesting people I have the pleasure of knowing. Finally, I am so excited to see you all flourish at Central, and find who you are in this new world called College. Much love from mom♥

 

My experience as a Leadership Safari Guide was phenomenal and I am so blessed I had the opportunity to help incoming students. Central Michigan is a wonderful place and I loved getting to share leadership and CMU with 2000 + other people.

 

 

Community

Alpha Sigma Tau

{My home away from home}

With all of the stereotypes about sororities, here is why I joined one and how my experience is nothing like what you see in the movies. If you would have asked me as a senior in high school if I would be a part of Greek Life I would have laughed and said heck no. I, like so many other people, had these crazy ideas about sororities until I met my mentor, Emily. She is and was then, exactly like me but she was involved in Greek Life. Through her, my knowledge of sororities grew and I went through recruitment my Freshman Year.

September 30th, 2016 was the day I, and multiple other girls, jumped home. I found my home in the Central Michigan Chapter of Alpha Sigma Tau. Here, I fell in love with the colors Emerald Green and gold, sisters, Anchors, and philanthropy. I have so much love for my sorority and the women in it, I have no idea how to put it into words but I will attempt.

AST has given me so much this first year, and I always try my best to give back. For my new member class, I was the Historian, along with Shelby and we made the scrapbook, anchor, and teacup for the chapter. It was fun being able to see everyone’s different photos and have digital evidence of my class blossoming into our chapter. Currently, I am the Director of Fundraising and planned our Grilled Cheese Fundraiser. The Grilled Cheese Fundraiser is something my chapter does every semester and the money we raise goes to our philanthropy, Pine Mountain Settlement School. This year I planned our first ever Philanthropy week which was absolutely amazing. If you want to know more about Grilled Cheese and our Philanthropy week, there is a specific blog all about it! Also, I participated in the 2017 Greek Week, other chapter’s philanthropy weeks, and endless AST events. On Central’s campus, Alpha Sigma Tau has over 1,000 hours of community service for this semester, the highest GPA, and members from all parts of campus. We are a tight-knit, passionate, and welcoming group of people. Alpha Sigma Tau and all of my sisters mean the world to me. They always have my back and I always have theirs. When something happens to one sister, it happens to all of us because we support and love one another. Being a Tau is part of who I am today, it has made me more confident, compassionate, and strong.

Through AST, I found so many important people in my life, and yes they will probably be my future bridesmaids. First to my Twin Carly… after your sister told us we look more like sisters than you two, we started saying we were twins. Without all of our constant texting, a sleepover, forcing you to go to Leadershape, and being “mom’s” together I don’t know what I would do. You have helped me find my voice and place in a sisterhood of 70+ girls. My best friends Michelle and Ellen. With Garrett, we make our little Greek Life family. You both are always there for me when I need you most. Thanks for being my family and keeping me sane. My crazy G Brenna… without you I don’t know where Em and I would be. You make sure both of us have fun even when we are stressed to the max. Thanks for the endless HAPPs dates and laugher. Finally, the most important, my Big Emily. Em was my mentor even before I joined AST. After joining the same sorority as her, we only became more close. The past few months have been hard but we always have each other and I don’t know where I would be without her. There are countless more people who have come into my life and made an impact but it would take me years to go through everyone.

My version of “What is a Tau?”

A Tau is a mixture of a boisterous little girl, a troubled adolescent, a charming young woman and a wise old lady. She is a streak of gold and a flash of green. She is a Leader Advancement Scholar, Centralis Recipient, an Athlete, and anything she wants to be. She is a shoulder to cry on, never-ending “your mom” jokes, and a friend. You can find her studying at coffee shops, cheering on the football team, and scootering through campus. She is involved, kind hearted, driven, and passionate. A Tau is all of this and more. A Tau is my sister ♥

 

 

 

 

 

 

Community

Grilled Cheese

•A blog in honor of National Grilled Cheese Day•

Every semester the Central chapter of Alpha Sigma Tau has a two-day Grilled Cheese fundraiser for our philanthropy, Pine Mountain Settlement School. The sister who plans and makes everything happen is the Director of Fundraising, which was me this year {YAY}. When applying for this position I knew I wanted to make it into more. Ultimately my goal was to do a philanthropy week like many of the other Greek Life chapters do around campus. So, when I got the position, I was super excited and decided to set out to do Alpha Sigma Tau’s first ever philanthropy week. I worked on the plans for months trying to think of the best activities but also the ones that would get the most people involved. Finally, after months the week was here and it was time to see if all my hard work would pay off. When it was finally here, I was super nervous but also excited to see if my plans would actually work!

{Monday} Day one was a Banner making contest for all of the Fraternities on campus. Basically, each chapter received a cloth banner from me and had to decorate it. On the banner had to be AST or Alpha Sigma Tau, the fraternity letters, and the dates/times of our Grilled Cheese fundraiser. The results were phenomenal and I was blown away with how creative some of the chapter were. Also, at this point I was super excited because my plan was working and my idea of a philanthropy week was actually coming to life!

{Tuesday} Day two had two parts. The first part of the day was a twitter contest. This included the brothers of each fraternity taking pictures with my sisters and posting them on twitter with their specific hashtag. To make it easy to find us and support our philanthropy, I had philanthropy shirts made so every sister in AST matched! Later that night, after the twitter contest, I put on the first ever Anchorman Pageant. The pageant was based on the popular comedy Anchorman which is about San Diego News Anchor Ron Burgundy. Participants had to compete in a suite and hair portion, Q&A portion, and news reading portions. For me, this part of the week was my favorite, because so many people were actually coming out and participating in the events I was hosting and because the pageant was truly hilarious.

{Wednesday & Thursday} Days three and four were all about the food. Both of these days were our Grilled Cheese fundraisers with unlimited Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup. The fundraiser took place at our AST house and we packed so many people into our tiny house but it was well worth it. Furthermore, on Thursday night at midnight we had our Grilled Cheese eating contest where our reigning champ was beaten by his little. Both nights went magnificent and I even ran out of most food because we had such a good turn out. These two days, no matter how stressful, I felt so blessed to be apart of CMU and the Greek Community because of the immense support AST was receiving.

Overall, this year we raised more money than years prior which was a huge success for me. Also, another big success was putting on our first philanthropy week especially with how well it ended up going. Thinking back on the week of Grilled Cheese, I could not have pulled off any of this without my amazing sisters. The women in my chapter are and were especially that week some of the most helpful, compassionate, and loving people in the world. So thank you to all my sisters and thank you to everyone who came out and supported us! ♥

Happy National Grilled Cheese Day!

Leadership Development

Leadership Launch

October 28th → Special Olympics Leadership Launch → Team MilkyWay Magenta

First and foremost this blog is a reflection about my Lead Team for the Leadership Advancement Scholarship. A Lead Team is a group of students in the LAS program who all work together for something specific like a workshop, Competition Day, or Grad Ball. My Lead Team was the Special Olympics and we facilitated a program called the Leadership Launch. As a team, we met once a week and planned for our day of facilitating and fun. Within our Lead Team we were paired together to be co-guides for the students coming to Leadership Launch and were given cool space names. My co and I were MilkyWay Magenta and I must say, we were the most out of this world group.

The Leadership Launch is a part of Special Olympics Project Unified. Project Unified promotes equality in schools and athletics for students with disabilities. Through this project, we created a day full of leadership and fun for students with disabilities and their “buddy”. All of the activities they participated in helped these kids see and think of themselves as leaders whether that be in their schools or on different teams. It was a period of time where these students could be whatever and whoever they wanted no matter what. It was fascinating to watch all the kids think about what they were learning and talk about applying it to their lives and how they could be the “leaders of today”, as Dan Gaken would say.

Something from this day that stuck with me more than anything was one of the activities we did with all the students. This particular activity was about their dreams for the world and how they wanted the world the change. In my group participants said things like they wanted a world that did not use the R word, a world with more happiness, and a world that was inclusive for everyone including them. When they were going around and saying all of their dreams and aspirations for the world, it was a very powerful moment for me. I have always wanted to work in Special Education and my family has always been very involved in Special Ed BUT that day, I had a moment where everything seemed to fall into place. It was a powerful moment for me and a time when   I knew what I wanted to do with my life and how I wanted to live. I knew then, that I wanted to make the world a better place for people with disabilities even if it is only one person.

Overall, this day was one for the books and it will forever have an impact on my life and how I want to live. Besides having fun and being involved with my passion, I learned something from the students there and from them I learned things about myself that I would not have learned without them. I now count down the days until I do my next event with Special Olympics because of the pure joy it brings to everyone including myself. ♥

 

 

 

Community

LAS in the D {Post Service Reflection}

LAS takes on Detroit • February 10- 11

{WHAT}

First and foremost this trip was an incredible experience. I was able to bond with many people in my cohort and the facilitators from the previous LAS cohorts. While the entire trip was only about  30 hours, we fit in so many different and tremendous expimg_4635eriences in multiple environments within Detroit. Here is a little overview of the 30 hours we spent in Detroit or ‘what’ we did while there. First, we went to Jalen Rose Leadership Academy and facilitated leadership activities for 2 hours with some of the juniors and seniors there. We were placed in groups with each group having  two head facilitators from cohorts above us, 6 students from LAS, and about 6 students from Jalen Rose. One of the activities we did was creating community standards which is always important when working in a group setting. Group standards are based off of what you want for yourself, each other as participants, and from the facilitators. From Jalen Rose, we went into the heart of the city and got a tour around Quicken Loans. While there they talked to us about their internship program and about everything they are doing for Detroit. Specifically one of the Vice Presidents, John Fikany, talked to us and his drive and passion for the company was astonishing and inspiring. Also, something at caught my attention about Quicken is that every employee gets a certain amount of paid volunteer hours so they all go out and help the community they work in. The packed day did not end there! After Quicken Loans, we went to the DIA or Detroit Institute of Arts where we were able to explore and just spend our time looking at the magnificent artwork. Finally, at the end of the day we went to the DNR’s Outdoor Adventure Center where we again were able to explore and basically just had a big sleepover. Saturdimg_4587ay morning we all got up and went to the Cass Community Center to volunteer for our last few hours. During our time volunteering at Cass, we were split into 4 groups that volunteered in 4 different places. My group, definitely had the coolest job; going to the warehouse to shed paper. Now you may be questioning why this was so cool to me. Let me wow you… they had bikes that powered their electricity and we
were able to ride them and make CLEAN ENERGY. How awesome is that? Once we were done serving at Cass we all loaded back onto the buses and made our tired way back to Mt. Pleasant where I proceeded to crash after an exhausting and exhilarating 30 hours.

{SO WHAT}

On to the actual substance of the trip and what we actual were able to do in Detroit for 30 hours. As a cohort we were able to do experience so many different environments in Detroit and impact so many different placimg_4636es. Now the question is so what did we learn while in all of these different places and how do they come together to create a learning outcome. For myself, being in Detroit pointed out how many times things are not as they seem. Living in the Upper Peninsula, we do not really go in-depth with places such as Detroit and what’s going on there. But after I went to Detroit and actually learned more about it I understood that it is no longer this sad once upon a time city but it is making a come back in many big ways. Also, I learned and built on my ability to put myself in others shoes and understand what they are going through. Finally, I did not so much learn this but was reminded about how fortunate I am. Seeing some of the more poor areas of Detroit opened my eyes because getting a B on a Phonetics exam in not even close to the problems that too many people who live in Detroit deal with.

{NOW WHAT}

The big question is now what? What am I and my LAS cohort going to do as a result of  being in Detroit and learning/ experiencing so many different aspects of it. Personally, I am going to look more into the history of Detroit and what really happened to make such a great booming city fall. I want to learn about the different aspects of Detroit’s fall and the different opinions of what happened to Detroit. Furthermore, I want to understand what people are now doing for Detroit. While at Quicken Loans  and the Cass Center we learned a little bit about what they specifically are doing but I want to go deeper and understand many of the different projects happening in Detroit to make it a wonderful booming city again. One of the specific projects I would enjoy learning more about is the River Walk and what the city is doing to make that place into somewhere everyone wants to be.img_4552

Another part of my “Now What” and what I want to do after being in Detroit is in general do more service for people who truly need it. I have always been passionate about volunteer work and since coming to college I kind of fell out of my hard-core service groove and have not done as much for others. This is not to say that I do not do any service, I am apart of a solely service based organization, it is just to say that I do not do as much volunteer work as I used to. However, after Detroit, I was reminded of how much I love serving others and how it not only brings joy to me, but also to the community around me. My ‘fire’ was lit again and I now have the desire to help more people and do more service for the communities around me.

Finally, the last part of my “Now What” is remembering to count my blessings. After walking through poverty-stricken communities within Detroit, I feel I need to go back through my everyday life and look at everything I have to be thankful for. People in Detroit are building their lives and city back up from nothing. Volunteering there really opened my eyes to this fact and the fact that I need to be more thankful for what I already have. Lately I have been stuck in a rut almost and frustrated with so many things like my major and other odds and ends in my life. In reality I am extremely lucky and needed to be reminded of that. I go to a wonderful school that I got scholarships for, I have met some of my best friends at college, and I have a bright future ahead of me. So here’s to acknowledging my blessings and counting than everyday

For more about this trip read my Pre LAS in the D blog. Also, for another service event I participated in read my Special Olympics Blog.