JUNE 2018: WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT FOR THIS SUMMER?
By Ashton Robertson
This summer I will be studying abroad in Australia at the University of Sydney. There, I will be continuing my education in Environmental Science but focusing on Australian Ecology and Wildlife. I am really excited about getting the opportunity to live in a totally different environment than Washington state. I am also really excited to learn more about the diversity that Australian nature has to offer. I decided to take on this adventure because it is something that will make me a more well-rounded student. Being able to see how education systems work around the world, especially in my own field of study, will broaden my horizons and show me that there is so much more to offer than just the information I learn at UW. I hope after this experience I come back to UW and DZ a more confident and well-rounded person, ready to share with my friends everything that Australia will hopefully teach me.
MAY 2018: SENIOR SPOTLIGHT : WHAT ARE YOUR TOP THREE FAVORITE MOMENTS OF COLLEGE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON? WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE FOR THE INCOMING MEMBER CLASS '18?
UW provided me with such a fantastic 4 years. In my time here, I have made some of the best friends of my life, found passionate areas of study, and learned a lot about the world and myself through school, organizations, and leadership roles. Looking back on my college experience I am amazed at how much I packed in: double degree, double minor, study abroad, working with SARVA, leading Greeks Take Action, serving on my chapter’s executive board, working at one of the few surf shops in Seattle, having a show at RainyDawgRadio. My advice to younger students is to find your way to have it all. Never let anyone tell you that your aspirations are crazy. Four years go by quickly, fill them up with everything you are excited about, everything you are curious about, everything you hoped you would try.
APRIL 2018: WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO JOIN A SORORITY? WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED BY JOINING THE GREEK COMMUNITY?
BY KEILYN KAWAKAMI
In high school, I was on the softball team, the dance team and the cheer team. Getting to meet all of these girls and make friends through reaching a common goal was one of my favorite memories. In college, I wanted an organization like the ones I had in high school. I wanted to find girls that shared similar values as me, but also had their own interests in which they could teach me. Personally, I did not know much about the rush process or Greek Community, but Greek Preview really opened my eyes to what sororities are really like. This is when I decided to rush. After finding out the opportunities provided, the connections made, and the lessons learned – I knew I had to go through with the process.
Now being a second-year member, I have learned so much from being in a sorority. The number one thing I’ve learned is that communication is key. Although this saying is cliché, it is important when living with over 100 girls. To try and get everyone on the same page, requires good communication. Another trait I’ve learned includes being empathetic and really trying to see things from other people’s perspectives. Coming from such diverse backgrounds, people have different thoughts and views, and these all have to be taken into consideration.
MARCH 2018: HOW HAS A PANHELLENIC WOMAN IN ANOTHER CHAPTER ENHANCED YOUR GREEK EXPERIENCE?
BY KEILYN KAWAKAMI
Going through recruitment and joining a sorority was a scary thing for me, but someone that had been there since Day 1 was my recruitment counselor, Jasmine Gonzales. From the first day of recruitment to the last, she constantly had a positive, upbeat attitude. Although I had just met her, I felt like I could trust her and tell her all my thoughts. Throughout the week, she was so easy to talk to and everyone just wanted to hang out with her during all the down times. She even made time for us outside of recruitment to spend time together as a group. She really reached out to us and made us feel comfortable, during such a stressful time. It was so easy to talk to her because she had been in our position and was able to relate. Another reason she was so approachable was because she wasn’t judgemental at all. My biggest memory with her was sitting in Mary Gates Hall for hours just telling her all my thoughts and talking about which house I should put first. She told me it will all work out no matter what, and I will find friends regardless. I did not end up in the same house as her but that just goes to show, the greek community is so strong and we’re all working towards the same goal. Without her, my recruitment and sorority experience wouldn’t have been the same.
FEBRUARY 2018: HOW DOES YOUR SORORITY EMPOWER YOU ACADEMICALLY?Before coming to UW I wasn’t sure if I was going to go through recruitment or not. I hadn’t heard or learned much about it; neither of my parents or family members was a part of Greek Life. I had no idea what to expect. All I had in my mind was the stereotypical sorority girl you see in movies and on television. I ended up going through Greek Preview and through that process I discovered just how serious our Greek Community takes academics. Like every other PNM that goes through rush, I knew UW was a very prestigious school and I wasn’t trying to be distracted and receive bad grades my first quarter of college.
was happy to learn that the Greek Community even had a higher combined GPA over non-Greek students. During Greek Preview, I asked a few active members how being in a sorority helps you academically. There were so many great responses in which I have found out are true, now being in a sorority. My favorite answer from this question was that your sisters are always pushing you to be the best you can be, whether that’s academically or socially. All of your sisters are there to challenge you, help you and lead you to the path that you will continue on your whole life. Your sisters challenge you by holding you accountable, whether that’s something small as doing your homework or as big as leading an entire chapter. The girls in my chapter inspire me every single day, whether that’s through their actions or words. This inspiration empowers me to push myself and try new things, whether that’s taking harder classes, joining new clubs, or even changing my major. I have found such an amazing support system not only in my own house, but also in other houses. The Greek System bonds people in and out of the classroom and I am so happy to be a part of such a great community.
Being in a sorority has greatly changed and impacted my college experience. Like I said before, my sisters challenge me everyday and through these challenges I’ve noticed myself becoming more outgoing. I have joined multiple RSOs, run for leadership positions in the house, and also have started volunteering within the community. If I wasn’t in a sorority I don’t think these opportunities would have been so easily accessible. I also got a job at Seattle Children’s Hospital thanks to mentorship and inspiration from older girls in my house. My sorority has shown me that we are here at UW to grow as a student, member of Greek Life, and as a person.
JANUARY 2018: INTRODUCTIONS AND NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS
75% of college students change their major one time before graduation, and yes I do fall into this 75%. I came into college wanting to study medicine, like many other students, but this year, my sophomore year, I decided to take a new path. Freshman year, I took some intro Public Health classes and I really enjoyed them. Now my intended major is Public Health with a minor in Business. I’m interested in working and helping children from low-income communities.
Since I’ve changed my path, I’ve realized a few things that tie into my New Year’s Resolutions. The number one thing I learned was to be open-minded - with everything.
In 2018, I hope to try new things and learn more about myself and those around me. I hope with my new path, I will get to experience things I haven’t even thought about before.
I’m excited I get to write for this blog because I get to share my personal experiences as well as challenge the readers to try new things and learn about themselves in the new year.