Oregon’s newest sorority
Currently, the sorority has six Leadership Consultants rather than an official chapter of women. Leadership Consultants Cora Johnson was a colony member in Sigma Kappa at Florida Atlantic University and Cossette Powley joined the sorority as a junior at University of Arizona. Johnson and Powley both lead the Consultant team as they inform potential new members about the “value-based organization.”
“Our purpose is to provide women life long opportunities and support for social, intellectual and spiritual development by bringing women together to positively impact the community,” Johnson said.
Sigma Kappa, with the open motto of, “One Heart, One Way,” was founded on Nov. 9, 1874 in Waterville, Maine at Colby College. The sorority has its trademarks, such as the pearl, the wild purple violet flower, the colors maroon and lavender and the symbols of the dove and the heart. Its values are rooted in personal growth, friendship, service and loyalty. Their philanthropy is mostly dedicated to Alzheimer’s disease research.
Director of Extension Melinda Mettler said Sigma Kappa is still working on getting a house with the National Housing Corporation. They hope to move in Sept. 2016.
According to Mettler, the experience with the UO Greek Life community has been positive so far.
“Everyone has been so welcoming,” Mettler said.
Johnson said UO decided to expand in 2014 and Sigma Kappa was searching for new places to find its roots at the same time, leading to a mutual agreement to welcome the sorority to campus.
“This Greek community is supporting and the community overall is supporting,” Johnson said.
The sorority starts their recruitment events this week with personal visits on Oct. 19-20 in the EMU Gumwood Room and Oct. 21-23 in Bean East Conference Room. Personal visits do require sign up before attendance, but the sign up is located on UO Sigma Kappa’s homepage.
Sigma Kappa also has events that are open to anyone, including their Philanthropy Night on Oct. 20 and their Sisterhood Night on Oct. 22, both in the Ford Alumni Center Ballroom at 7:00 p.m.
Their preference ceremony is on Oct. 24 at 3:00 p.m. and their own Bid Day is celebrated on Oct. 25 at 12:30 p.m. Both events are by-invitation only.
According to Johnson, a good number of women showed interest in joining Sigma Kappa, but some other women like first year Victoria Blanger do not plan on rushing for the sorority. However, Blanger sees Sigma Kappa as an organization that is out there that some people need.
According to Blanger, the sorority will gain many new women.
“Everyone wants to be apart of something, so I feel like they would get a lot of people,” Blanger said.
According to Mettler, recruitment results have not surfaced, as they have only been spreading the word about their organization and their events for this week.
“We definitely take quality over quantity,” Johnson said.
For first years interested in joining Sigma Kappa, one can sign up for a personal visit on the sorority’s website and continue with the events from there. There are also more casual options.
“Don’t hesitate to contact a Leadership Consultant and they are more than happy to grab lunch and talk to you,” Mettler said.
One can also reach out to a Leadership Consultant through email, their website or the UO Fraternity and Sorority Life office.
“We are just very excited to be on campus and we are definitely ready to expand the Greek community,” Johnson said.
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