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Published by Alpha Omicron Pi, 2017-03-02 10:28:57

The Piper - March 2017

The Piper - March 2017

TheP i p e rAlpha Omicron Pi | March 2017

Convention 2017 Information Sigma Omicron (Arkansas State U)
50 Years of AOII & the Arthritis Foundation is one of 67 alumnae and collegiate
Strike Out Arthritis! Game Dates chapters that received AOII’s Hot
and more! Chocolate Sisterhood kit for raising
more than $500 for the 2016 Jingle Bell
Run. We love this cute photo of them
enjoying their hot chocolate!

SAVE THE DATES BoaErxdeMcutievsesage

MARCH 6 Gayle Fitzpatrick
International Badge Day
MARCH 14 (Alpha Rho/Oregon State U)
Pi Day!
MARCH 15 International President
AOII Foundation Leadership
Training UIFI Scholarship I had the opportunity to attend Leadership Academy in early
Application Due February with our Collegiate Chapter Presidents, Panhellenic
Convention 2017 award Delegates, Chapter Advisers, AOIIs NPC Delegation, AOII’s
applications due Education Committee, AOIIs Headquarters Staff, our
APRIL 1 & 15 Panhellenic friends -- Julie Johnson from Kappa Delta and
Various Collegiate AlphaLink Malaea Seleski from Zeta Tau Alpha, and our guest speakers.
Reports Due There were more than 450 of us from all across North
APRIL 15 America gathered at the Marriott Cool Springs for a weekend
AOII Foundation Ambassador of learning about all things Panhellenic with the theme being “AOII Loves NPC.” With our
Applications Due very own Carole Jones (AOII NPC Delegate and Past International President) moving into
AOII Foundation Young the NPC Chairman position in October, this was an opportune time for our chapter leaders
Alumnae Council to focus on how AOII can spread the Panhellenic spirit across their campuses.
Applications Due Friday night’s programming highlights included getting to know NPC, learning how each
chapter is part of NPC and how working together with our Panhellenic sisters on our
1 campuses will advance the sorority experience for all NPC groups. Our guest speaker for the
evening was Dr. Mari Ann Callais. Her message focused on having the courage to be a change
agent on your campus, how leaders can be supportive of others who need encouragement,
and how living AOII values everyday will make a difference to your chapter and Panhellenic
community. She ended her session with her trademark guitar playing! It was a great way to
start the weekend.
Saturday morning started with the Chapter Advisers traveling to AOII Headquarters for
their morning sessions, and the Chapter Presidents and Panhellenic Delegates staying at
the Marriott. Switching places in the afternoon, the Chapter Advisers returned to the hotel
for their afternoon sessions, and the CPs and Panhellenic Delegates traveling to AOII HQ
for their sessions. This gave each group the opportunity to visit AOII HQ and do some
Emporium shopping! Each group had a full agenda for the day! Some of the sessions for both
groups included topics on working with your NPC Delegate, understanding NPC rules and
regulations, creating friendships across badges, and sharing a spirit of fraternity and love to
advance the Panhellenic experience. I had the opportunity to assist in facilitating a session
for the Chapter Presidents, and Panhellenic Delegates at AOII HQ. After a pizza dinner we all
gathered back at the Marriott to hear from our NPC delegation, and our NPC friends on their
NPC stories and the many friends they have made across badges through their NPC work.
Sunday morning’s session focused on how our AOII leaders can make a difference with their
chapter and on their campus. Carole shared her vision for NPC and AOII when she becomes
the NPC Chairman in October. It is a team effort, and we will ALL play a part in moving the
sorority experience forward. Before we wrapped up Leadership Academy 2017 we had an
update on all of the great things to anticipate at AOII Convention 2017 in Washington, D.C.
in June!
It was a jammed packed AOII weekend full of education, collaboration and networking. With
Carole poised to become the NPC Chairman this year, this is a great time for AOII to be front
and center in our Panhellenic communities. I look forward to hearing how our AOII leaders
will embrace this opportunity to be an active leader in their Panhellenic Community and
showcase AOII’s commitment to advancing the sorority experience.

Executive Board Excerpts

In the heat of formal recruitment, she is the one who comes hours early to help set up
refreshments, press linens and haul cases of water to the chapter house. You might not
even notice her, because she is gone before you arrive. She might be the one staying
up late to check on reports for your chapter and make sure you are doing all you can
as a chapter to meet your SOEs. Perhaps she’s the one from miles away, shipping the
chapter a case of good luck care packages at finals time! And sometimes, she’s the one
holding your chapter’s hand through the difficult days, giving inspirational pep talks to
get everyone back to center.

Often in the background, yet definitely at the heart of it all, “she” is an AOII
volunteer—an adviser on your AAC, a network team member, an NS-D, or alumnae
chapter officer. Whether she gives time at the international level or at the local chapter
level, the AOII volunteer is vital to the success of our Fraternity. Our leadership
depends on the strength and dedication of these women! Jessie Wang-Grimm

Volunteer Appreciation Month is coming up in April! Now is an (Phi Chi/U of Chicago)

excellent time to put thinking (and thanking) caps on, to plan how your International Vice President
chapter will show its gratitude for the women who give their time and
talents to help give you an exceptional AOII experience. Collegians—in
what ways can you best show your AAC members how much they mean to you? Will you ask your
sisters to prepare handmade cards of thanks? Does your chapter adviser love a particular treat
such as chocolates or cupcakes that you could present to her with a bouquet of roses at chapter
meeting? If an AAC member is celebrating a milestone anniversary with the chapter, or with AOII
as a member, be sure to check those dates discreetly and honor her with your love and appreciation.
Maybe there is a year-end event that would be the perfect time to surprise your favorite AOII
volunteer with your heartfelt gratitude? Or is there opportunity to invite your AAC members to
a chapter dinner and serenade them with your favorite songs and chants, and a special dessert?
Thank you events don’t have to cost a lot, and are best remembered when they show genuine love
for these women who sacrifice their family and personal time to make AOII the best it can be.

In our alumnae chapters, our officers and committee chairs do so much, sometimes taking on
more than one role. They make our Founders’ Day events flawless, and fundraise tirelessly for the
AOII Foundation and Strike Out Arthritis! events. While some of us are on summer vacation, they
open up their homes to host annual budget and programming meetings, so our AOII year goes off
without a hitch. They prepare the newsletters and post all the happenings on social media. They
also take time off to attend Leadership Institute or International Convention. How can we best
thank them for all that they do? Nothing says “we appreciate you” like a surprise spa certificate or
recognition at a dinner out with sisters. You don’t have to plan a separate event if you can carve out
some scheduled chapter time to share with them how much they mean to your alumna experience!

Please also remember the women who help your network to run so smoothly. You don’t often get
a chance to see them in person, but week in and week out, these women are watching the AOII
barometer on each chapter’s progress to make sure no one misses a report or chance to improve
performance. And they do this for many chapters all at once! A thank you card and signature from
your chapter members goes a long way in making these women feel very special and valued.

Our Fraternity could not be where it is today without the gift of volunteers. For all who let their
light shine and make us a better sisterhood, a show of our gratitude is certainly well-deserved. Let’s
all make April the month to highlight those efforts with our sincere appreciation!

2

AlphPaCrOuimnlticucriorpnelPei s

Alpha Omicron Pi’s Culture Principles were created to provide our membership with a
consistent approach to “how” we do things. Their purpose is to help all members achieve
the meaning of Fraternity as outlined in our Ritual.

ACCOUNTABILITY & OWNERSHIP

We personally accept responsibility for our actions and explain
those actions in a straightforward manner. We take ownership of the
outcomes of those actions.

COLLABORATION

We work together, practicing consensus and teamwork. We collaborate
so that our members feel valued, a part of the bigger picture, and to
ensure a better result is achieved because our members are partnering
and working together.

ENGAGEMENT

We impact the hearts of our members and promote an exceptional
membership experience by building relationships and creating
emotional connections to AOII and our goals. We keep the ideals of
AOII fresh in our minds through association with sisters, service to our
organization and striving to always reflect credit upon our Fraternity.
We forever honor the obligations, which we have voluntarily taken upon
ourselves, and will remain devoted to Alpha Omicron Pi throughout our
lifetime.

INNOVATION

We have the courage to embrace new ideas that will create value for our
members. We challenge the status quo when appropriate and are open
to smart risk-taking in order to meet our short and long-term goals. We
leverage new technologies and practices to connect and share information
with our members.

OPEN & HONEST COMMUNICATION

We communicate openly, honestly and transparently. We listen first and
solve later; we act on facts and understanding of the actual situation. We

3 are inclusive and value different perspectives.

AOII Foundation News
1 - Deadline Approaching for AOII Foundation
Scholarship Opportunities! 1 2
3 4
A Leadership Training Scholarship is available for undergraduate
members for the Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute (UIFI) and
are due by March 15, 2017. The scholarship will cover all registration
fees except for travel expenses. Contact Sydney Talley at [email protected]
alphaomicronpi.org for the application or visit our website for more
information on the scholarship.

2 - Celebrate Pi Day!

Pi Day is 3.14.17 and it’s just around the corner! On this fun occasion,
we ask you to make a special donation to our Foundation using $3.14 x
the number of years you’ve been initiated!
Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram (@aoiifoundation) and Facebook
(www.facebook.com/AOIIFoundation) for special Pi Day updates and
information on how to make your donation!

3 - Interested in Serving as a Foundation Ambassador
or Young Alumnae Council Member?

We’re now looking for qualified candidates to serve as Foundation Ambassadors and on our Young Alumnae Council.
Foundation Ambassadors serve as the voice of the Foundation in their local community. An Ambassador’s role is to inform
collegiate and alumnae members about the importance of the Foundation and its programs which secure the future of our
Fraternity through leadership development, scholarships and philanthropic endeavors. Ambassadors must be alumnae in
good standing with AOII and agree to serve the Foundation for a two-year volunteer term.
Additionally, we are looking for alumnae who graduated within the last 10 years to serve on our Young Alumnae Council.
The YAC’s purpose is to assist the Foundation in engaging and educating our sisters, specifically collegiate and recent
alumnae sisters, to the idea of consistent giving to our sisterhood though the AOII Foundation. YAC members are also
asked to represent the Foundation at AOII events and/or make presentations on the Foundation to collegiate chapters at
least twice a year.
Visit our website for the application and job description for these opportunities. The deadline to apply for both of these
volunteer opportunities is April 15, 2017. Please contact Jana Adkins at [email protected] for questions about
Foundation Ambassadors and Courtney Stafford at [email protected] in regards to the Young Alumnae
Council.

4 - Position Opening at the AOII Foundation

The Foundation has a position opening for an individual seeking an entry/early career level job as a Marketing &
Development Assistant. The position will support the cultivation, acquisition and stewardship of donors of the Alpha
Omicron Pi Foundation. The goal is to help educate our members, foster positive experiences, support the Foundation staff
and ensure a strong base of ongoing financial support. This individual will be a team player, supporting various members
of the Foundation staff on specific projects and activities.

Please visit our website for the complete job description. Interested candidates should email their cover letter,
resume and salary requirements along with a writing sample to [email protected] Calls
regarding the position will not be accepted.

4

NPC News

Working for the Good of your Panhellenic Communicty

Last month, AOII Panhellenic Delegates, Chapter Presidents and Chapter Advisers attended Leadership Academy in
Nashville, Tennessee. Over the course of the weekend, AOIIs and a few Panhellenic sisters shared in a sense of Panhellenic
spirit as we worked to identify ways that AOII can be a contributing member of the greater Panhellenic community. During
one activity, collegians were asked to identify the positive ways that their chapter had contributed to the Panhellenic
community. Participants shared experiences that moved beyond elected officers, philanthropic support or kind notes and
flowers. They shared experiences as to how they had supported other Panhellenic chapters in times of crisis. A woman
shared a story about how a chapter house caught on fire during recruitment and AOIIs supported that chapter by sharing
their facility with the other Panhellenic chapter. Another detailed how their Panhellenic community bonded together
to serve others in the greater community when floods and other weather related tragedies destroyed homes outside the
campus walls. These uplifting stories highlighted all that is and can be good when we put aside stereotypes, jealousy and
competitiveness. The script was then flipped on the participants and they were asked to share stories where their actions as
AOIIs had damaged the Panhellenic community or its reputation. The women answered honestly; none were proud of what
had occurred, and all noted how it made the Panhellenic community less than in the eyes of non-members, administrators,
faculty, parents and others.

As part of this activity we discussed why it was so much easier to contribute to the negative instead of finding the things
that were sure to unite us and make our community stronger. It’s not easy to look away when other chapters don’t buy into
this sense of Panhellenic spirit outside coming together in the wake of catastrophic incidents in and out of the community.
Chapters already have enough on their plate during the year that often the idea of adding another event or trying to get
members to support another activity is more trouble than it’s worth, but we must ask ourselves what would the Founders
want us to do? What are our responsibilities to our Panhellenic community?

AOIIs have much to celebrate with Carole Jones becoming the NPC Chairwoman in October. This is a time to let our
actions within our Panhellenic communities shine brighter than ever before. Not only as a testament to her lifelong service
to the Fraternity and to Panhellenic ideals, but also because we have been called to do so by our Ritual. It is time to begin
asking ourselves in chapter, will our actions and decisions made each day reflect credit upon our Fraternity and default
to the larger Panhellenic community? Below is a list of ways we can work for the good in our Panhellenic community as
shared by your AOII sisters at Leadership Academy this year.

• Support efforts to eliminate stereotypes within your Panhellenic community.
• Partner with other Panhellenic chapters to do outreach to faculty and administrators on the benefits of sorority

membership.
• Lift struggling NPC chapters on your campus by supporting their PR efforts and/or doing conversation workshops

with them.
• Learn about Panhellenic by familiarizing yourself with the NPC Manual of Information.
• Challenge your Panhellenic officers to identify causes and issues for Panhellenic to confront.
• Run for Panhellenic Executive Board positions with the goal of doing

more than the status quo. In other words, revolutionize Panhellenic on
your campus and get rid of the five-minute announcement meetings.
• Promote Panhellenic with other NPC chapters to attract more potential
new members.
• Reduce risks and identify positive ways to celebrate campus traditions.
• Make connections with other women’s organizations both on and
off campus.
• Set meaningful, achievable goals for scholastic achievement.
• Resource alumnae to support Panhellenic women looking for jobs
and internships.

There are many more things that can be added to this list. Will you
start the discussion in your chapters today as to what you can do to
5 work for the good of your Panhellenic community?

RT&J News
1- Has your head ever been brimming with so many ideas, it’s hard to know where to beging to
make them happen?

That’s exactly how the members of the Rituals, Traditions and Jewelry Committee (RT&J) feel, largely because of our
meeting last November. The theme for that meeting was “Collaboration – Coordination – Communication.” We built on
previous ideas and hatched a lot of new ones. We’re excited about what we have up our sleeves. Here’s a sneak peek at
some of RT&J’s initiatives:
Communications/Resources
• Offering conference calls for Keepers of the Ritual (KORs) and advisers to help orient them to their jobs
• Including an RT&J article in each Piper
• Adding the KOR to Leaders’ Council
• Offering informal meetings for members with RT&J during Convention 2017
• Establishing RT&J liaisons with networks and AOII entities, including alumnae chapters (a brand new addition)
• Stimulating two-way communication between RT&J, networks and chapters
• Adding Ritual-related materials to the online Officer Resource Library (ORL)
• Adding more “Ritual Moments” to the ORL
• Developing a Rituals Book supplement and additions to the Book of Rituals Instructions (BRI) and Ritual Education

Manual (REM)
• Developing ways to get Ritual performance and education best practices from chapters to be shared
Accessibility to AOII Proceedings
• Changing the Pledge Ceremony to Pledge Service to allow friends and public to attend
• Relaxing attire requirements for alumnae attending collegiate chapter Rituals
• Developing suggestions for collegiate chapter Rituals performed with large numbers of participants
• Eliminating the requirement that chapters request RT&J permission to combine Rituals
• Exploring ways to make Ritual equipment more affordable and manageable
Jewelry
• Allowing collegians, as well as alumnae, to wear their badges on rings, as lavaliers on necklaces, and on bracelets
• Offering a 75th membership anniversary pin
• Ending the policy which required badges to be returned to HQ when members die
• Developing more informal AOII jewelry options

RT&J has developed implementation timelines for most of these initiatives, but will publish those dates when all have been
finalized.

We hope you share RT&J’s excitement about how these initiatives will benefit Ritual accessibility, understanding, and (we
hope) interest on many levels.

RT&J wholeheartedly welcomes and enthusiastically encourages input. We want to hear from members about all aspects
of Ritual performance and education. We’re all in this together and we learn from each other. Please let us hear from you
about your ideas and questions at [email protected]

by Ginger Banks, Pi Kappa (U of Texas-Austin), RT&J Committee Chairman, Life Loyal 6

2- Ritual Moments

Spend some time with AOII’s Founders! Watch for a new “Ritual Moments” installment on the
second Monday of each month! February’s recording was a “Founders’ Day Greeting” from 1978.
Members can also access a transcript of each recording in the Ritual section of the Officer Resource
Library on Fulfilling the Promise (edu.alphaomicronpi.org > Officer Resource Library > Ritual >
Ritual Moments & Ritual Moments Transcripts).

Convention 2017 Information

1- Awards Competition Open 1 2

The AOII 2017 Convention Awards Competition is open at
aoii.groopt.com! The deadline for collegiate and alumnae chapters
is March 15. Late submissions will not be accepted.

2- Registration Opening Soon! 3 4

Join AOII at International Convention 2017 in Washington D.C. June
28-July 1! Registration for Council will open tentatively March 20, but
check your email, the AOII website and social media for exact dates,
including general member and part-time registration. We look forward
to celebrating!

3- Travel Guidelines For Chapter Presidents

All Collegiate Chapter Presidents must adhere to the Travel Guidelines
to be reimbused for travel to/from Washington, D.C. Please reference these when planning and booking travel.
Click here for a PDF copy of the Convention 2017 Collegiate Chapter President Guidelines.

4- Travel Guidelines For International Volunteers

The travel for Convention 2017 will be paid for Past International Presidents, Executive Board Directors, Network
Directors, Network Specialists, National Panhellenic Conference Delegation, Standing Committee Chairmen and
Parliamentarian. In order to receive reimbursement, the Travel Guidelines must be followed.
Click here for a PDF copy of the Convention 2017 International Volunteer Guidelines.

Commemorative AOII Badge

In October 2017, AOII Past International President, Carole Jurenko Jones, Alpha Delta
(U of Alabama) will begin a two-year term as chairman of the National Panhellenic
Conference. To recognize this milestone occasion, the AOII Executive Board and the AOII
Rituals, Traditions, and Jewelry Committee have approved the sale of a limited edition
emerald badge to recognize NPC’s signature green color. The badge will only be available
through October 2019 when Carole’s term as NPC Chairman ends.
The following options are available:
• 10K yellow gold or 10K white gold with alternating pearls and emeralds in the “O” and in

the corners of the “II” (plain or chased, $299)
• Sterling silver with alternating pearls and emeralds in the “O” and emeralds in the corners

of the “II” (plain or chased, $175)
This badge is considered a secondary badge only. It will be available for purchase by initiated members of AOII who are in
good standing. Initial orders placed before mid-May 2017 will be available for anyone attending Convention at the Herff
Jones Table. Orders for non-Convention attendees will be mailed to home addresses immediately following Convention.

To Order: Visit the Herff Jones website at: hjgreek.com. Then search for Alpha Omicron Pi.

7

2017 MLB Strike
Out Arthritis! Dates

Los Angeles Angels April 8, 2017 Tampa Bay Rays September 17, 2017
Philadelphia Phillies April 21, 2017 New York Yankees September 17, 2017
Colorado Rockies April 22, 2017 Pittsburgh Pirates September 24, 2017
Oakland Athletics April 22, 2017 Houston Astros
Cincinnati Reds April 22, 2017 Los Angeles Dodgers September 24, 2017
New York Mets April 22, 2017 San Diego Padres September 24, 2017
Milwaukee Brewers April 23, 2017 Boston Red Sox September 24, 2017
Minnesota Twins May 2, 2017 San Francisco Giants
Chicago White Sox June 25, 2017 Kansas City Royals September 28, 2017
Seattle Mariners July 22, 2017 Miami Marlins September 30, 2017
St. Louis Cardinals September 9, 2017 Texas Rangers October 1, 2017
Toronto Blue Jays September 9, 2017
October 1, 2017
October 1, 2017

Chicago Cubs September 10, 2017
Cleveland Indians September 17, 2017

To purchase tickets for these events go to our website! If you need anything regarding
these events and this initiative contact the Assistant Director of Marketing & Events,
Monica Grandorff at [email protected]

8

AOII’s International
Membership Exam

How is your chapter preparing for the AOII International Membership Exam?
The VP of Education, Keeper of the Ritual, Education Adviser and Ritual Adviser can view the exam
and exam key on the Officer Resource Library at http://edu.alphaomicronpi.org. For the material
to stick, we encourage multiple study sessions and/or highlighting study guide material at chapter
meetings. Pay attention to the balance of information you are presenting to your members. The
oral portion of the IME may only be worth 25 points but necessitates equal education. The essential
tradition of Alpha Omicron Pi is that its Rituals and promises are to be considered working principles
for life, not simply emotional expressions. Reciting speeches, the pledge and singing Ritual stanzas are
mechanisms to understanding our Ritual as it applies to our daily lives.
Tips for engaging your sisters in exam prep:
1. Encourage reading directly from the Ritual book.
2. If you have a chapter house/suite/common space, post fun news bulletins or posters around
the house with AOII policies and facts, while remembering to keep anything with Ritual
away from print/areas of the house where guests have access.
3. Turn studying into a game (Jeopardy, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire or Hangman).
4. Add your own flare to the study sessions! Provide stories or examples of the material.
5. Set the tone for the IME by being enthusiastic and passionate when presenting the
information.
What you need to know for reporting:
1. Members on a status are exempt from taking the exam.
2. Members receiving less than a score of 90 are required to retake the exam until the score of
90 is achieved.
3. Provide your advisers ample notice to assist you with overseeing the process. Names of
advisers who were present will be asked on the Alphalink report.

For questions regarding the IME Alphalink form due April 15th,

9 please email your chapter’s Assistant Director of Collegiate Experience.

Making “Cents” of the
Budget Creation Process

As we turn the corner into the month of
March, your chapter should be discussing its
plans for the next fiscal year and compiling
a budget for NS-F/NS-D and ADCE review
and approval. It is important to remember a
budget should not be presented and voted on
by the chapter without first being approved by
your network team. In hopes that all collegiate
finance teams understand the budget is not
a system merely for paying bills on time,
we have outlined some important items for
consideration:
1. Knowing why you are budgeting. Dig
deeper than “We are doing it because the
AlphaLink due date sheet says it is due in
April.” Give yourself some credit. You are creating a system of organization that allows for your members to have
the exceptional membership experience promised them at initiation. Budgeting shows where your priorities lie
as a chapter and ensure you maintain competitive in your Panhellenic community.
2. Give equal consideration to long-term and short-term goals. In sharing the previous year’s budget with the
officers and asking for their projections of expenditures for the upcoming year, help them think of immediate
items that need purchased (i.e. recruitment supplies) as well as items for which the chapter may need to save (i.e.
Ritual robes).
3. Be realistic. Budgeting is like dieting– it’s not going to work if you make unrealistic plans off the bat. Do not
reduce the social budget by 80%. Average out what you’ve spent on each line item and pledge to a cap of just 5%
or 10% below that average. After some time you can trim it a bit more.
4. Rally the troops. The other leaders and advisers should be aware of the significant budget changes being made
and aiding you in spreading a uniform message about such plans. Find support for the chapter’s new financial
decisions.
5. Revisit the budget every month at chapter business meetings. Help your chapter members be more
financially literate by discussing the budget and spending adjustments each month at chapter. Seeking
information year-round from chapter members makes for a more productive meeting when the budget is first
proposed.
You will find the following items, under the “Finance” tab in the Officer Resource Library, helpful as you dive
into this project.
• Chapter Budget Template
• Fee Announcement (Collegiate) 2017-2018
• Financial Fee Descriptions

10

AOII & the Arthritis
Foundation Honor
50 Years Together

Throughout 2017, AOII will celebrate our 50-year partnership with the Arthritis
Foundation in several ways! One of the many areas of collaboration includes participation
in both signature events sponsored annually by the Arthritis Foundation. Walk To Cure
Arthritis (WTCA) events are held each spring with Jingle Bell Run (JBR) events are
typically held in November and December. WTCA teams are forming now!
WTCA is the Arthritis Foundation’s annual community fundraising 5K walk event. The
funds raised from the 5K support their nonprofit mission and research aimed at finding
a cure for arthritis – America’s leading cause of disability. Most local WTCA events
occur in May, but some start earlier in the spring. Whether you walk to show your AOII
commitment, have a loved one who suffers from arthritis, or are looking for a walking or
running event for physical fitness, these family and pet-friendly WTCA events are great
ways to get moving in support of a worthwhile cause!

How to Get Involved:

WTCA event sign-ups are happening now! Go to http://www.arthritis.org/get-involved/
walk-to-cure-arthritis/ to find a walk near you, or give through Team AOII National by
clicking the “Find A Team” box and type in Team AOII National.

Honor AOII’s and the Arthritis Foundation’s 50th Anniversary!

It does not cost anything to register for a WTCA event because fundraising is the primary
source of revenue. To honor our 50th, we are encouraging every WTCA participant to
raise at least $50 for the cause. Your registration provides you an online donor page with
easy ways to send personal emails. Ask 5 people for $10 or 10 people for $5, or make it easy
and ask 1 person for $50. Whatever way you choose, we thank you for stepping up and
becoming a Champion Of Yes!

TJoeoiaunrm!

11

Volunteering for AOII

The Human Resources Committee always accepts volunteer applications. To speak to a member of the HRC team
about which position is right for you, please email [email protected] To complete a volunteer application, visit
alphaomicronpi.org/volunteer-opportunities1 and click on the link at the bottom of the page.
The positions listed here are currently open - HRC is actively recruiting to fill these vacancies:

Standing Committees
Public Relations Committee Member
Network 1
No Vacancies
Network 2
No Vacancies
Network 3
No Vacancies
Network 4
Network Specialist-Development, Pi Omicron (Austin Peay State U) (Effective 5/1/2017)
Network 5
Network Specialist-Leadership *New Position* (Effective 7/1/2017)
Network Specialist-Recruitment *New Position* (Effective 7/1/2017)
Network 6
Network Specialist-Finance *New Position* (Effective 7/1/2017)
Network Specialist-Leadership *New Position* (Effective 7/1/2017)
Network 7
Network Specialist-Development, Troy U *New Colony Fall 2017* (Effective 7/1/2017)
Network 8
Network Specialist-Development, Alpha Rho (Oregon State U) (Effective 5/1/2017)
Network Specialist-Development, Arizona State U *New Colony Fall 2017* (Effective 7/1/2017)

Do you follow AOII?

Do you follow Alpha Omicron Pi on social media? Make sure to follow us to keep
up with exciting chapter information, Fraternity News, events, programs, trainings,
ELC travels and much more! Check them all out by clicking the logos below.

12

AOII Suitcase Diaries

by Educational Leadership Consultant Alicia Gauker, Sigma Delta (Huntingdon College)
As soon as I open my mouth to speak, which I do quite often, you’ll know exactly which state I call home. My
southern twang is hard to mask and this job has taught me that I don’t want to.
I’ve known two things about myself for a long time: One: I love meeting people and helping them anyway that I
can. Two: I was meant to get out of the small town I grew up in. So, the easiest decision I made before graduating
college was to apply to be an Educational Leadership Consultant.
Throughout my life, I had traveled to 14 states and Mexico, but never for longer than about five days. Each time,
I left home knowing that I would be returning soon to my family and friends. Each time I would be returning to
my roots.
The warm comfort I felt knowing I would be back soon ceased to exist once I hopped on a plane to Lexington,
Kentucky for my very first chapter visit. I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I was extremely nervous as I waited
outside of baggage claim for Kappa Omega’s VPA to pick me up. Thoughts of what to say, what to ask, and what
to do ran through my head faster than Bo Scarborough in the SEC Championship game last year. When I got in
to the car with Kelly, those thoughts were erased from my mind. I was with a sister that I didn’t know, but I felt
like I knew her my whole life. Our founders were so intentional with our Ritual 120 years ago that I already knew
that this sister was kind and loving.
After my visit to the wonderful ladies of Kappa Omega who will forever have my
heart, I hopped on a plane to my next adventure in Springfield, Missouri.
I lived in Springfield, Missouri for eight weeks—eight weeks in a state that was
not my sweet home Alabama. In fact, it was exactly 10 hours from my hometown.
Thankfully, those four wonderful ladies at Barnard College, placed even more
sisters in my life who were kind and loving when we colonized the Delta Gamma
chapter at Missouri State University. These women made those eight weeks worth
the distance. They made Springfield start to feel like home.
Now here I am, a month into my second semester as an ELC writing
this from an airport in Texas as I await my connection to San Diego,
California.
Jake Perry, from the classic film Sweet Home Alabama, once said
“you can have roots and wings.” How lucky am I that his words ring
true for me? This semester I’ll visit chapters in every single time
zone, including two chapters in Canada! At the end of my term as
an ELC, I’ll get to go back to my roots to see my sweet family and
friends.
I will never be able to forget this amazing opportunity. Thank you
to my fearless, selfless and supportive boss Kaya Miller for the job of
a lifetime. Thank you to Kappa Omega, Delta Gamma, Sigma Beta,
Theta Iota and all the chapters I will soon meet for showing me that
my family is bigger than the people I love in my small hometown.
And thank you, God, for all of the doors that You’ve opened when I
thought they were locked with a key I didn’t have.
Don’t be afraid to spread your wings. Your roots will always be there.

AOII Suitcase Diaries

by Educational Leadership Consultant Lauren Smith, Tau Gamma (Eastern Washington U)
I’ve always been a firm believer that home is not a place on a map, not a structure
where you lay your head at night, but rather home is a feeling. Home can be
wherever you feel at peace, at ease and where you feel yourself.
For me, home is the feeling of a lazy Sunday morning with my mom and sister,
quoting movies we’ve seen a million times while the smell of freshly brewed coffee
fills the house. When I went off to college, the feeling of home became the warm
welcome I received whenever I walked through the door of the AOII house on
College Avenue and sunny days sitting on the porch talking about life.
One of perhaps the most daunting parts of accepting the job of ELC
is that you are likely to be very far from home, and surrounded by
people you don’t necessarily know. But one of the best lessons I’ve
learned is that no matter where you go, you can always find people,
places or little things that bring you right back to that sense of home.
At Iowa State University: I found a sense of home in the late nights
we spent after recruitment, and the night we went to Perkins at
1 a.m. anxiously awaiting for the final list of new members to be
released. I felt at home when these girls I had known only six days
demanded to cover me in glitter and be part of the bid day festivities
and celebrate their new members.
At East Carolina University: I felt at home when the women shared their preference ceremony with me and
I found myself emotional. These women had welcomed me into their sisterhood as if they had known me all
along, and when it was time for me to go to my next visit I felt a sense of emptiness thinking about leaving these
incredible women.
At University of Texas San Antonio: I felt welcomed and at home when the women I stayed with took me to
Whataburger at midnight to try a honey butter chicken biscuit, sharing with me one of their college town
traditions. I also felt so connected to them when we stayed up late prepping for recruitment and the lack of sleep
kicked in and we were laughing at nothing at 2 a.m.
At Rhodes College: I felt at home when the women drank as much coffee as me and Starbucks was always
a priority for starting the day. I loved watching them randomly break out old Jonas Brothers songs when
recruitment had finally finished, instead of just wanting to go home and sleep they bonded together and sang
their hearts out.
At University of Louisville: I felt at home when one of the first things someone said to me was “Want to go to
Target?!” (The answer is always yes.) When they took me to their favorite spots in the city. Also when I got to
watch them prepare for their campus Greek Sing event called Fryberger watching all the passion these women
put into preparation and the fun they have while doing it!
At East Tennessee State University: These women don’t just make me feel home, they have become another form
of home. Being with this chapter from the start, they immediately left a huge imprint on my heart. Being able to
share with them the building of their sisterhood, for many of them the first time they had strong, vulnerable and
meaningful friendships and watching these develop. Then sharing with these women their first experience

14

Thewith Ritual and knowing I would always be connected to them. And recently
watching them pledge in their first new member class, watching their love for
one another and AOII grow and spread to others.
Every sisterhood event I was able to attend, every moment of laughter, every
bid day I’ve gotten to participate in, most importantly every time I was able
to share Ritual with these chapters, made me feel a sense of home. Even when
the days were harder and I missed my family and friends a little more I took
comfort in knowing my AOII
sisters who had been strangers
hours before could provide me
the same feeling I got when I was
surrounded by the women of my
home chapter. No matter where
you go, AOII is there, and AOII
means you are never without a
feeling of home.

Piper


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