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Published by Alpha Omicron Pi, 2015-10-05 12:49:12

2008 Fall - To Dragma

Vol. 73, No. 1


ToQM m a
Vol.. 73 No.l £f I-AU.2008



11 J

s •





Departments Features

7 Viewpoint 10 A Thankful Heart
8 Fraternity News
32 Member Profile What does i t mean to be thankful?

N i k k i Mendicino (Gamma Alpha) 16 Leadership Institute 2008
George Mason U
Get I n Tune and check out Li's greatest hits.
42 Collegiate Chapter Profile
24 New Face of A Volunteer
Alpha Delta ( U of Alabama)
Volunteering offers great incentives and rewards.
44 Member Profile
28 The Road to Closing -
Missy Jenkins (Delta Omega) Buying A Home
Murray State U
The bare basics for buying a new home.
52 Collegiate Chapter Profile
34 Centennial Celebrations
Lambda Sigma ( U o f Georgia)
Delta (Tufts U) and Gamma ( U o f Maine) celebrate.
54 Award News
62 Alumnae Chapter Profile 36 Democracy in Action

Alaska Understanding the Executive Board Election Process.

64 From the AOII Archives 38 Fulfilling the Promise
66 Reunions
79 2008-2009 AOII Directory A O I I Launches a N e w Education web site.
82 Things We Love
86 Life Loyal AOII 40 Texting and Driving

O p p o s i t e : Beta Tau (U of Toronto) chapter Educate yourself on this hot topic. Is it worth the risk?
members enjoy an autumn afternoon.
46 Reality Fan Favorites
SUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008
Three AOIIs f i n d success in the world o f reality.

49 Charting Our Future

A O I I begins a journey toward organizational change.

67 AOII Foundation Annual Report

The 2007-2008 Annual Report of Donors

84 Exceed the Green Expectation

Go Green with AOII's 2008 PR in A Box Campaign


l o SL)raemaf I !

To Dragma is the official magazine of Alpha Omicron Pi Choices. Those who know me, know that I am a huge Harry Potter fan.
Fraternity, and has been published since 1905. The mission One of my favorite pearls o f wisdom f r o m J. K . Rowling's beloved Hogwarts'
of To Dragma of Alpha Omicron Pi is: to inform, educate and Headmaster, Albus Dumbledor, goes like this, " I t is our choices, Harry, that
inspire our readers on subjects relevant to our Fraternity, our show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."
chapters, our members, or Greek life; to encourage lifetime
AOII involvement; to salute excellence; and to serve as a In A O I I , I have been reminded o f many choices lately. W h i l e I don't have
permanent record of our Fraternity's history. a college aged child yet, many of my friends do. I wrote more Membership
Information Forms (MIFs) for girls going o f f to college this fall than I could
How to Contact To Dragma: count. Each one involved the "talk" w i t h the potential new member or her
To Dragma, 5390 Virginia Way, Brentwood, TN 37027 mom about what to expect during recruitment at various schools. I'm not a
(615) 370-0920, fax: (615) 371-9736,, recruitment expert, but my A O I I resume includes enough previous experience
[email protected] to give me more than a passing knowledge o f how the system at most schools
works. A l l summer long, I was discussing recruitment choices. The girls
How to Update Your Name or Address: had to choose whether to participate in recruitment; moms and dads had to
Go to Update Profile on the private side of the AOII website choose to endorse it. We discussed wise ways to choose chapters that would
(, email your new address to be best for them, and I tried to simply explain how the Greek organizations
[email protected], or call (615) 370-0920. choose their new members. We even discussed choosing what to wear during
How to Subscribe to To Dragma:
Beginning June 11, 2008, subscriptions are $25.00 annually. At some point early on, I found that I had moved out o f AOII-recruitment
Subscriptions are by check or credit card. Checks, made mode into Greek-recruitment mode. Going into recruitment open-minded is
payable to AOII, should be mailed to 5390 Virginia Way, essential for everyone on both sides of recruitment. I would have loved for the
Brentwood, TN 37027, Attn: Accounting. Credit card AOII chapters involved to snag every one of these remarkable girls. Some did,
subscribers (Visa, Master Card or Discover only) should email some didn't, and some opted to pass. The chapters had that choice. I could
[email protected]. make that same statement the other way around, too, by saying that I would
have loved for all these girls to pledge A O I I . Some did, some didn't, and some
A Note to Parents of Collegians: opted to pass. The potential new members had a choice, too.
Your daughter's magazine is being mailed to her home
address while she is in college. If your daughter is no longer If you are reading this, chances are pretty good you are an A O I I . You and
in college or living at home, please send us her updated your chapter of initiation made a mutual choice. You are an A O I I . I hope you
address, as indicated above. consider it an excellent choice. I personally do. W h e n I think of how different
my life would be had I made a different choice, or my chapter made a different
Managing Editor choice, I am amazed - and enormously thankful. A O I I is my employer and
Mariellen Perkinson Sasseen, Alpha Delta (U of Alabama) the source of countless numbers o f amazing sisters and friends. W h e n the
situation requires it, I can carry on a conversation w i t h a wall - thanks to A O I I
Assistant Editor and hours of recruitment conversation workshops! A O I I is also the entity that
Erin Burcham, Zeta (U of Nebraska - Lincoln) first taught me how to be a leader, a listener and a believer - i n myself

Creative Director You now have a choice to make also. The magazine distribution change
Rebecca Brown Davis, Delta Delta (Auburn U) begins w i t h this issue. Unless you have chosen to be a dues paying alumnae
chapter member, a Life Loyal A O I I member or purchase an annual
Graphic Designer subscription, this w i l l be one o f only two issues you w i l l receive this fiscal year
Whitney Frazier, Rho Omicron (Middle TN State U) (July 2008-June 2009). You w i l l also receive either the Spring or the Summer
2009 issues, but not both. Alumnae Chapter members, Life Loyal A O I I
W o m e n Enriched through Lifelong Friendship. members, annual subscribers and collegians w i l l continue to receive all three
published issues.
Alpha Omicron Pi was founded at Barnard College in New
York City, January 2, 1897, by Jessie Wallace Hughan, Helen Some members have been vocally upset at the change, and that is your right.
St. Clair Mullan, Stella George Stern Perry & Elizabeth The A O I I Executive Board's choice in reaching this decision was difficult, but
Heywood Wyman.

International President
Susan Danko, Phi Upsilon (Purdue U)

Executive Director
Melanie Nixon Lampertz, Lambda Sigma (U of Georgia)

Alpha Omicron Pi is a member of the National Panhellenic
Conference and the College Fraternity Editors Association.


4 • T o DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008

absolutely necessary. There are so many wonderful parts of this A O I I world
of ours that only To Dragma can really explore and record, so we are thankful
that the magazine still has a bright future for those who choose to stand w i t h
us. Just like in our A O I I world, this issue highlights many different kinds o f
choices. Woven throughout are stories that I hope w i l l inspire you to choose
- choose to be thankful, choose to be happy choose to get involved. Every
member, every chapter has a choice. What w i l l you choose?

Marietkn Perkinson Sasseen, Alpha Delta (U of Alabama)
Managing Editor

Choose to join an AOli Alumnae Chapter - Go to the AOII web site to find contact information for a chapter near you.
Choose to join Life Loyal AOII - Go to the AOII web site and click the Life Loyal AOII link at the top of the main page.
Choose to become a To Dragma Annual Subscriber - Go to the AOII web site and click the To Dragma.

Online Extras
J How d o you join an alumnae chapter? How d o you join Life Loyal AOII?

How do you become a To Dragma Annual Subscriber?
Goto "To Dragma"

A Change is Coming - To Dragma Distribution Information

To Dragma will continue to be mailed to all collegiate members. Alumnae who join Life Loyal AOII, pay Alumnae Chapter dues or
subscribe annually will also continue to receive the magazine. Beginning with the Fall 2008 issue, alumnae members not in one of
those groups will experience a reduction in the number of issues based on the schedule illustrated below. Detailed information on
each of the options is available under the To Dragma section of the AOII web site.

Timeline for 1To Pragma To^ragnia
Collegiate m
Members, *or/ 1To(i5ragma
Life Loyal AOII 3 issues per year •AC*
Dues Paying 3 issues per year
Alumnae Chapter
and Annual

3 issues per year

Timeline for i ^ g X , AOII
anyone not
in one of the
above groups

Schedule 2 issues per year 1 issue per year Access To Dragma feature
Fall 2 0 0 8 - S u m m e r 2010 Fall 2010-Summer 2012 stories via AOII web site

Fall 2012 and forward


W h y is it that t h i n k i n g about the coldest months can often f i l l you w i t h the
warmest thoughts?
A u t u m n is characterized by more than multicolored leaves falling to the
ground. It is a time when we come together w i t h the ones we love to realize
how truly thankful we are for one another. This is the time I realize how
thankful I am for Alpha Omicron Pi.
This organization is filled w i t h so many extraordinary women who give
back i n every way they know how, and for that I am truly grateful! Looking
around at all our amazing women during this past Leadership Institute, my
spirit and love for A O I I was renewed and I became inspired to serve the
Fraternity even more in my own way.
As seasons change, it is important to change w i t h them. N o w , as the
temperatures are getting cooler, the warmth we feel in our hearts comes
f r o m the service acts we do on a daily basis. As women o f A O I I , the love we
have for each other and our communities unites us. Though we are spread
throughout the United States and Canada, this love creates Women Enriched
through Lifelong Friendship.
N o w is a time to reflect on the philanthropic aspects o f A O I I . The
Fraternity has provided me so many opportunities to serve others. Look
into your o w n life to see where you have served and where you can
continue to serve. Alpha Omicron Pi appreciates all that you have done
and all that you w i l l do for the Fraternity and the world around it.
As I watch the leaves begin to change and pull out my sweaters, my
heart is warmed by the comfort o f knowing the wonderful things this
Fraternity has given me and so many others. I thank all those who make
this possible every day, and I am filled with j o y as I look to the possibilities
of the future!

Roses and m y best,

Susan Danko, International President

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008


Ruby Fund and
Founders' Day Messages

Convention 2009 The R u b y Fund Message, as well as an interactive
Award Nominations presentation of the A O I I Executive Board's
Founders' Day Message are both available on
Award nomination forms for Convention 2009 the home page of the A O I I website. Both the
can be accessed on the A O I I website at w w w . Founders' Day and R u b y Fund Messages are A l l Fraternity awards traditionally read or presented during upcoming
w i l l be posted after November 1. Nomination Founders' Day Celebrations.
requirements and deadlines are specified on each
f o r m and can be found in the M y A O I I Officer Scholarship Application Deadline
Resource Library. Likewise, the A O I I Foundation
w i l l present the Barbara Daugs Hunt Award, which Scholarship applications are n o w available for the
recognizes an alumna for lifetime service to the 2009-2010 academic year. Deadline for receipt o f
Foundation. This Foundation award application the completed application is March 1, 2009.
can be found online at For information, contact Sharon Blaze at
and must be submitted bv March 1, 2009. [email protected].

Alumnae Chapter Installations Flip Flops Are A Hit

Ithaca, NY A few of the very popular A O I I
Foundation Beach Party Flip Flops
Alpha O m i c r o n Pi is excited to announce the are still available w i t h just a $35.00
installation o f two new alumnae chapters this fall. donation to the Foundation
The Ithaca, N Y Alumnae Chapter was installed Visit the A O I I Beach Party
by A O I I International President Susan Danko on at
September 13, 2008. Alana Mildner was elected for more information.
the Alumnae Chapter President while Michele
Segalini was elected Co-President.


O n the opposite side o f the United States, the
Alaska Alumnae Chapter was installed on
September 27, 2008. Yvonne Sams, Alumnae
N e t w o r k Specialist was the Installing Officer and
A m y Hills was elected Alumnae President. Read
more about Alaska AC's exciting new approach to
building an alumnae chapter on page 62.

8 • To DRACMA ISSUE NO.1 • FALL 2008

Go Vote '08

In colleges across the US, there is added

excitement regarding the upcoming

Greek Leadership Roles Presidential election, to be held on

Alpha Omicron Pi Executive Director, Melanie November 4 , 2 0 0 8 . As members o f Go Vote '08
Nixon Lampertz, Lambda Sigma ( U o f Georgia) Greek organizations, we all have an
was elected as a Director on the Fraternity
Executives Association (FEA) Board of Directors obligation to be active citizens in our
for the coming year. FEA is a professional
association o f men's and women's fraternity communities, states, and nation. Every
executives dedicated to promoting, supporting
and encouraging the free discussion and exchange Greek member should exercise their right
of ideas relating to college fraternal organizations.
Likewise, AOII's Managing Editor/Archivist, and obligation to register and vote in local, state,
Mariellen Perkinson Sasseen, Alpha Delta ( U o f
Alabama) w i l l serve this year as a Director of the and national elections.
Fraternity Communications Association (FCA).
Formerly k n o w n as the College Fraternity Editors Part of AOII's own rich heritage includes activism
Association (CFEA), the organization has changed in the political arena where founders were involved
its name and redirected its mission to better meet in issues such as child labor, women's rights, and
the needs o f today's communicators. FCA's mission welfare relief organizations. Their passion for these
is to enhance fraternity communications through timeless issues should remind members to exercise
the exchange o f ideas, experiences and information. this valuable privilege and inspire us all to leave a
legacy for future generations.
Save the Date for
Leadership Academy 2009 W i t h that in m i n d . Alpha O m i c r o n Pi has been
participating in the G O V O T E ' 0 8 campaign.
G O V O T E is a non-partisan project organized
by the Capital Fraternal Caucus in Washington,
D C , and stands for Greeks Organizing Voting
Opportunities, Transportation and Education. It is
an important campaign to help register students to
vote, as well as organizing transportation to polling
locations on Election Day.

Leadership Academy 2 0 0 9 , February 6 - 8 , will offer We strongly encourage each alumna and collegiate
an opportunity for collegiate Chapter Presidents, member to help ensure a successful democratic
Chapter Advisers, and an emerging leader in each process, and Go Vote ' 0 8 !
collegiate chapter to attend a weekend event filled
w i t h inspiring speakers and leadership development Fraternally,
activities! This event held at the Cool Springs Susan Danko
Marriott and A O I I International Headquarters International President, Alpha Omicron Pi
brings women f r o m across the United States and
Canada together to celebrate the bond of A O I I and
to grow together as leaders now and i n the future.
Watch for registration to open in November on the
A O I I web site under Events.

ISSUE N O . 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8 T o DRAGMA • 9

• 1

V iI

S3 ?S6

1 3^ \

i* Wouldn't it be wonderful i f we could learn how
to wake up i n a positive mood every day? Experts
1 suggest that before going to bed each night, we j o t
down a list o f at least ten things we were t h a n k f u l
By Mariellen Perkinson Sasseen, for that day. It helps put us i n a good mood
Alpha Delta (U of Alabama) before going to sleep each night, delivering more
Managing Editor peaceful sleep and helps up wake i n a more positive
attitude. Depressive attitudes are more easily kept
at bay when our journals are filled w i t h thanks and
gratitude. Oprah W i n f r e y once said, "Be thankful
for what you have; you'll end up having more. I f
you concentrate on what you don't have, you w i l l
never, ever have enough."

So during this season o f Thanksgiving, pause and
be thankful. W.J. Cameron said, "Thanksgiving,
after all, is a w o r d o f action," so w h y not begin
actively channelling any negative emotions into
positive ones and start giving thanks for those
people and experiences that have touched our
hearts. Parents, grandparents, siblings, spouse,
children, teachers, coaches, friends or pastors
could be part o f that lengthy list. W h a t about
other factors that have made you the person you
are today? Maybe you finally began to believe
i n yourself on stage i n a high school play or a
particularly challenging event inspired you to
become a doctor. D i d your participation i n little
league Softball, Girl Scouts, 4 - H , chorus or Habitat
for Humanity help mold you into a better person?
It's w o r t h pausing to t h i n k about.

Where does A O I I stand on your list o f thankful
experiences? Hopefully, we're on the list, not just as
a positive collegiate experience, but a positive lifetime
experience. O u r Founders could not conceive of
a world where their friendships would end. Stella
George Stern Perry wholeheartedly believed this
often-repeated wish for A O I I , "May you have the
joy in it all, dear children, that we (founders) have
had all the way! May you love one another as happily
always as we four have done in a life-long fellowship
without a break! A n d may your descendants in
Alpha Omicron Pi bring to you the glory that you
yourselves are to us today!" We would all be hard
pressed to f i n d a more positive person than Stella
Perry. Her ability to give thanks for those and that
which she loved was enormous. Stella would have
agreed w i t h the words o f John F. Kennedy when
he said, "As we express our gratitude, we must never
forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter
words, but to live bv them."

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

on Below: Susan Weeks Kocyba, Delia Banks Hut-
emones ton, Terri Pepple Pletch, Debbe Moreen Lundin
Julie Crone Matthews, Cathy Shiffler McCarthy
By Terry Pepple Pletch, Judy Helms Cahill, and Maria Rogers Campbell
Phi Upsilon (Purdue U)

I learned about sisterhood in the Summer o f 1968 when my mother passed away.
As a new member, I am sure I had not yet grasped the true meaning of that word.
At her death, my Phi Upsilon sisters sent me flowers that said "AOII love, your
sisters." N o w forty years later, I truly understand what that means.

There are nine o f us w h o have stayed in close contact with each other over
the years. Six o f us are f r o m the same pledge class, and the other three were one
year younger. In the beginning, we tried to get together at least every
few years. Lately though, we try not to miss a year. We spend about four
days together in a different place each year. We bring music, memories, pictures,
and our love for one another.

We have survived job changes, financial woes, burglaries, house fires, cross
country moves, and a myriad o f child issues. We have survived divorce,
remarriage, and cancer. We have buried parents, spouses, children, and friends.
Through it all, we have sustained one another. Even though we live i n Montana,
Indiana, Ohio, Colorado, and Florida, we are in touch by email, phone, and
surprise visits.

Personally, I am so thankful the love that began in 1968 has grown and continues.
From riding horses with me in Montana, to the shopping, to the euchre, to
the toasts, to the road trips, to being lost, I am thankful. For boat rides and the
Biltmore house, for wine and cheese, for cooking meals together, for sharing
families, for our smiles and tears, for the little moments when we are quiet,
for the dancing and the music, for our rose buddies, and, of course, Purdue
Homecomings, I am thankful. To my sisters, you are my sunshine and the
wind beneath my wings.

W i t h A O I I love for my sisters,
Susan Weeks Kocyba
Cathy ShifHer McCarthy
Debbe Moreen Lundin
Delia Banks Hutton
L o u A n n Langwith Spore
Maria Rogers Campbell
Judy Helms Cahill
Julie Crone Matthews


y 9riankful
*Heart -
W i t h i n t w o hours after my sending the messages
By Ginger Banks, Pi Kappa (U ofTexas, Austin) about the tumor, I received a response Beth Saul,
Past International President and Chairman of Ritual, a member of Alpha Epsilon Phi i n California, who
Traditions and jewelry Committee is a former chairman o f the National Panhellenic
Conference (NPC). She said her neurologist
I always thought it might be interesting to have a husband would review my M R I .
date w i t h a brain surgeon so I could pick his brain.
I had envisioned that during our date, we would W i t h i n 20 hours, I received a message f r o m A O I I
sit across a table at a lovely restaurant. As it turned Janet Siegel, w h o lived in N e w York at the time.
out, I did have a date w i t h a brain surgeon, but I She had gotten the news about my diagnosis f r o m
wasn't across the table. I was on it. someone else. Janet offered the services o f her
uncle, a renowned neurosurgeon in New York
In January 2005,1 was diagnosed w i t h a brain City, to review my M R I . Janet provided all o f his
tumor that would be treated with surgery. phone numbers.

When I first got the diagnosis, I decided to be The next day, I got a message f r o m A O I I Charlene
in charge of getting the word out. I wanted to Kennoe in O h i o , w h o also had gotten the news
i n f o r m my many friends across North America f r o m someone else. She said her neurosurgeon
about my situation. I f I told just a few people, I husband would be glad to review my M R I .
feared the information might be misconstrued and
that, similar to the old game o f "Gossip," the word I took advantage o f these offers. The result: I
might be that I only had hours to live. soon had three "second" opinions. I got them
without having to search for additional doctors. I
In fact, the tumor was very treatable. By its nature, didn't have to have referrals f r o m my primary care
the tumor was not cancerous. The prognosis was physician. I got the opinions very quickly. And all
very good. the doctors said exactly the same things that my
doctors i n Austin, T X , had said.
Shortly after getting my diagnosis, I sent a lot o f
email messages about it. I sent so many messages Most importantly, I got reassurance,
that my sister predicted that when I was about to go encouragement, and an incalculable dose o f
under the anesthesia, I'd probably say, "Wait! N o t friendship. None o f that would have happened
yet! I have more messages to send first." i f I hadn't stayed involved w i t h A O I I , i f I hadn't
maintained my A O I I and N P C friendships, and
As a result o f my communications, I received a i f AOIIs and our N P C friends weren't incredibly
tremendous outpouring of love and support f r o m caring, generous, and thoughtful people.
AOIIs near and far. I knew most o f the AOIIs, but
heard f r o m many I didn't know personally. The I had always believed i n the power o f prayer,
messages, gifts, and cards provided encouragement, positive thinking, positive energy, and letting
spiritual sustenance, support, and humor i n ways people know I care. N o w , I believe i n all o f that
I had not expected or imagined. Their profound even more because I've seen the powerful effects
value to my attitude was immeasurable. they had when I was on the receiving end.

Perhaps the most tangible examples o f how 1 M y only regret is that those people w h o had
benefited from my A O I I connections and the thought for years that I have a swelled head now
power of friendship during that time were the have the M R I s to prove they were right.
additional medical opinions I received.

14 • T o DRAGMA ISSUE N O . 1 • FALL. 2 0 0 8

isterhood for a Jifetime

By Linda B. Grandolfo, Nu Iota (Northern Illinois U) "As we express our gratitude,
AOII Vice President Collegians we must never forget that the
highest appreciation is not to
Sisterhood for a Lifetime is a phrase AOIIs use utter words, but to live by them
frequently. For years I told my A O I I sisters my story
about my N u Iota A O I I sisters and our dedication
to meet 4 to 5 times a year for over 30 years. We
even had our picture in To Dragma! Little did I
know that I would come to fully understand what
Sisterhood for a Lifetime truly means.

At 4:00 in the morning ofjanuary 22, 2006, while
attending our January Executive Board meeting,
I was awakened i n my Nashville hotel room. It
was my step daughter calling to tell me that my
husband, Peter, had been taken to the hospital, and
that she was already on her way. Minutes later, I
learned that Peter had suffered a fatal heart attack
in our home. H o w I made it to the airport and
home to Chicago remains a blur to this day. We
came together as a family and planned a beautiful
funeral for Peter the f o l l o w i n g week. The vase o f
beautiful red roses sent by all three A O I I Boards
sat proudly at his wake.

That first week and for months later, I received
phone calls, flowers, plants and a mountain o f
cards f r o m my A O I I sisters all over the country.
Donations i n Peter's memory arrived at the A O I I
Foundation and at the Arthritis Foundation o f
Chicago. N o t a day went by that first month that
I did not f i n d cards in the mail, or a week when
flowers f r o m a caring sister or chapter did not
arrive. O u r alumnae, collegiate chapters, volunteers
and starf took the time to support a sister i n need.
I was totally shocked by the shear number o f cards
and donations that arrived i n the mail day after
day. As the weeks went by, my A O I I sisters did not
forget - phone calls were frequent, emails and still
more cards. W h e n I look back at those very dark
days in my life, I w i l l always be grateful for my
A O I I sisters. They were my strength, a shoulder
to cry on, an ear to listen and arms to hug. Over
two years has passed, but the support I received and
still receive after this loss remains. I w i l l always be
thankful for m y A O I I sisters and truly believe that
Sisterhood is, indeed, for a Lifetime.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008 I'o


Issue NO. I • I .M I. 2008

Franklin Cool Springs Marriott,
Franklin, Tennessee

It took 643 attendees, Bach attendee created her own line up
one weekend i n by selectingfour topics to attend
June, and months throughout the weekend:
of planning to put
together Leadership 2 0 Ways to Say T h a n k Y o u
Institute 2008. A O I I Fire Safety
Many contributors A O I I Full Circle-Discussion
worked to make this Does your Professional Etiquette Need a Tune-Up?
project a success by Getting~Down with the A O I I Vibe
developing sessions, Putting inCircle to Work
perfecting live Alumnae Advisory Committee Q & A
performances, and CNS Q & A
promoting the event. Event Planning or H o w to Get a Party Started
Leadership Institute Maximizing Your PR $$$
would not have been Bowling Your Way to a Winning SOA!
possible without the C o p i n g w i t h Stress
support of hundreds From Initiation to Eternity
of AOII's biggest Standing on the Shoulders o f Giants
fans-our members. . W o m e n and Personal Finance
Being In Tune • M a k i n g the Best Dressed List
w i t h A O I I means Meet with the A O I I Attorney
coming together Online Fraud and Identity Theft: Protecting Yourself
and realizing how Ten Things You Need to K n o w about N P C
each member has
the ability to make
A O I I stronger by
developing her
personal growth.

Leadership Institute
2008 provided
over 20 different
options through four
learning paths and
brought everyone-
together for four
power sessions led by
keynote speakers.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2o&8

Keynote Speakers A O I I Exercise was
the ultimate A O I I
Friday: dance party. Lori
A O I I Full Circle, presented by Goede, Alumnae
Dan Shaver, Founder and C E O o f Network Director and
Affinity Marketing Consultants and fitness instructor led
Sigma C h i Fraternity member hundreds o f attendees
i n an intense lesson o f
Saturday: hip hop dancing. I f
Recruitment, Retention, and A O I I ever produces
Ritual: Exceeding the Expectation, a music video, we
presented by Ginger Banks, PIP k n o w we have plenty
and Chairman of the Rituals, o f talented back up
Traditions, and Jewelry Committee; dancers.
and Leigh Perry R T & J Member and
Nominating Trustee Saturday's After Hours
brought the eagerly
Self Defense Clues You Can Use, anticipated Girls'
presented by Officer Mark W o o d and Night Event. This
Officer Sam Bady o f the Brentwood exclusive after hours
Police Department party for AOII A -
Listers only, brought
Sunday: everyone together
A n A r m y o f One, presented by for manicures, W i i
Bobra Crockett Doiron, Fraternity Boogie competitions,
Development Committee member Guitar Hero, blackjack
tables, bunco,
A f t e r a f u l l day o f motivating sessions and country-line
and programming, AOIIs came dancing! You haven't
together for L I After Hours experienced an A O H
event, u n t i l you've had
a "dance o f f " with a
PIP! Everyone had a
blast as they boogied,
two stepped, and
roDed the dice w i t h
freshly painted nails.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8


\1 •1 x

1* » 1^

T/te AOII Paparazzi was on site patching all of the action.

Everyone is an AOII celebrity. To view the entire collection of

event photos visit:






McKenna Wild

The Perry Award is the highest McKenna also emphasized that for themselves at the U o f Toronto
distinction given to a collegiate the chapter take charge o f their by ranking the highest i n grades o f
member of Alpha Omicron Pi. finances. She made the collection all N P C groups and through their
Named after Stella George Stern o f bad debts a priority and expressed participation fund-raising events
Perry, the first President o f A O I I , it is the importance o f following officer sponsored by the Greek community.
presented once a year to the collegiate budgets. The chapter soon began A O I I helped to increase fund-raising
Chapter President who has served to realize the benefits o f keeping event attendance by 70%.
with exceptional commitment and accurate financial records. Today
inspirational leadership. they are up to date on their accounts, A wonderful leader, scholar, and
giving them the freedom to spend on friend, McKenna W i l d has a love
The 2008 Perry Award recipient more chapter activities. for A O I I that spread to her campus
is McKenna W i l d , Beta Tau ( U o f community. Her C N S described
Toronto). During Mckenna's term Ritual education was extremely McKenna's impact on Beta Tau:
as president, she helped implement important to McKenna, w h o spent " T h e reinforcement o f high standards
many changes w i t h i n her chapter time going over mechanics and enabled the chapter to maintain a
that served to make Beta Tau discussing the meaning with chapter positive campus image. She focused
stronger and in turn carve a path members. She encouraged her the chapter on sisterhood, scholarship,
o f success for the chapter. Under sisters to come to her w i t h questions and philanthropy - not just social •
her leadership, the chapter put . and by living it herself, inspired activities. Members developed a
i n place an action plan to obtain other members to attend it with a greater sense o f what A O I I . can be i n .
campus total w i t h i n the next t w o greater appreciation. the world about us."
years. A f t e r a very successful spring
recruitment and fall continuous Using Beta Tau's sub-motto for Implementing change is never an
recruitment, Beta Tau had increased motivation, "We Strive for the easy thing, but McKenna credits
their chapter size by 133%. Highest," was the theme used her fellow officers for the chapter's
to keep the chapter moving i n a success. "Everyone learned h o w
if f I constant forward direction. I n order to w o r k as a team w i t h dedication,
to increase attendance, a monitoring passion, and motivation. Beta Tau is
J ..»kVi program was started. In addition n o w stronger and closer than ever."
to holding each member more W e k n o w that McKenna, w h o is
accountable, incentive awards were currendy w o r k i n g for the travel and
given out at meetings and sisterhood tourism industry in Toronto, will
events were planned to bring sisters continue to "strive for the highest" in
t o t h e chapter house. "Sister dates" life and continue to make an impact
paired collegians and advisers for in A O I I through her involvement
opportunities t o get to k n o w each in the Toronto Alumnae Chapter.
other. W i t h everyone on the same Congratulations to McKenna Wild.
team working for a common goal, A O I I is proud to claim you!
Beta Tau began to become stronger
internally and made more o f a name

ISSUE N O . 1 • FALL 20(18

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

We all have the power to make a difference.
By staying true to ourselves and to the

principles ofAlpha Omicron Pi, we are
in tune with each other and the world
arowul us. Keep busy staying fabulous!

10. Party L i k e a P I P Rockstar: AOIIs '
enjoyed Guitar Hero, W i i Boogie, blackjack 4
tables, Bunco, manicures, and line dancing at
the A O I I After Hours Girls' Night.

9. M a t e r i a l G i r l : It was hard to resist the *"
E m p o r i u m and all o f its new products.

OUT 8. A O I I A l l S u m m e r L o n g : Connecting
w i t h sisters made L I 2008 the perfect summer
ISSUE N O . 1 • FALL 2 9 ! >N destination!

7. D r e a m s : After a long day, we can't complain
about snoozing i n the extra plush M a r r i o t t beds

6. J u m p : AOIIs loved getting together for A O I I
Exercise and learning some new moves.

5. D i a m o n d Accolades are a Girl's Best
F r i e n d : A record $20,690 was raised by the
A O I I Foundation at L I 2008.

4. Panda Party: Bigger than the Kung Fu
Panda movie, AOIIs donated over 300 pandas to
AJAO through the Panda Donation.

3. I've got the Power Sessions: Three power
sessions kept everyone motivated and i n tune!

2. Pocket Full o f Sunshine i n 2009:
A O I I heads to Tampa for Convention 2009!

% M y A O I I : by "DJ Scrilla," this real life

recording o f an A O I I rap was played throughout

the w eekend. "TCt«&MHi^^|




I n ] )K \<;M \ Issui; NO. 1 • FALL 2008


Not so long ago, this word conjured a vision of ladies in white gloves
and pearls sipping tea at their local service club meeting. For these
ladies, volunteering was a way to pass the time until they collected
their children from school and started preparing dinner for their
bread winning, successful husbands.

Things have changed. Communities are teeming with volunteers,
many of them women with careers, families and constraints on their
time and budgets, but they devote their time to causes that make
impressive impacts on their communities. What is the incentive for
these women who give selflessly of their time, skills and often their
money? More importantly, for those who are not volunteering already,
what are they missing?

High-Gear Career " M y volunteer experience w i t h A O I I has helped
me further develop my critical thinking skills
For many w o m e n , particularly those w h o are and my decision m a k i n g abilities," says Kathy.
just starting their careers or are moving up " I have become a better public speaker, a better
the ladder into management positions, being time manager, and have formed a wonderful
involved in volunteer organizations puts them network through my volunteer activities,
in the position to gain project management which have all served to further my goals both
experience, manage budgets, w o r k as part o f professionally and personally."
a team and network w i t h those in executive
positions in their community.

Kathy Brakefield Sowell, Lambda Tau ( U of H o w can you use volunteer experience to
Louisiana at M o n r o e ) o f A r l i n g t o n , Texas, has further your career? Volunteer for leadership
been a volunteer for most o f her career. She's positions that can close any perceived gaps i n
active i n A O I I as the Education C o m m i t t e e your career. For example, i f you are seeking a
C h a i r m a n and has served i n a variety o f roles position that requires budgeting experience,
w i t h her local collegiate and alumnae chapters, offer to be the treasurer for your local
including Regional Rush Officer and Regional organization. The experience will give you real-
Vice President. She's also served as president o f life experience for your resume. Additionally,
the Dallas/Fort W o r t h Speech Pathologists and many organizations offer skills and leadership
Audiologists Association and treasurer of the training that easily translates to your job.
P T A . Kathy says her volunteer experience has
been an i m p o r t a n t factor as she's built her career
in education.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

Just a Few Good Reasons to Volunteer

• You've moved to a new city and want to make new friends.
• You're considering a job change and need to network.
• You're a stay-at-home mom who needs a social outlet.
• You've retired and have skills and time to offer your community.
• You're blazing up the career ladder, and need an opportunity outside the office t o

sharpen your skills.
• You're well-established in your career and life and want t o give back in a meaningful way.

Keeping connected working with a group of volunteers who feel
passionately about a cause."
Once you've left college, you might be
presented w i t h a number o f challenges including Putting your stamp on the world
moving and searching for a new j o b (and new
friends) in a city where you don't know a soul. Everyone wants to do their part to make our
Perhaps you're a new m o m that's transitioned world a better place — for our families and for
f r o m a full-time career to staying home w i t h ourselves. So h o w can volunteering enable you
your newborn, and you're searching for other to make your impact? Melissa Parsons Healy,
moms in a similar situation, or you've recently Omega (Miami U) of Charlottesville, Virginia,
retired and you're looking for the perfect says w o r k i n g w i t h her local A O I I collegiate
opportunity to become more involved in your chapter is the key for her.
community. Whatever your reason, staying
connected and m a k i n g new friends is a w o r t h y "Each collegiate chapter is so i m p o r t a n t to
reason to volunteer. the overall success o f A O I I , so v o l u n t e e r i n g
my t i m e as the Chapter Adviser for R h o Beta
Kandyce Harber, an O m i c r o n ( U o f Tennessee) allows me to do my part in my little corner o f
alumna and member of the Knoxville Alumnae the w o r l d , " says Melissa. " T h e collegiate w o m e n
Chapter, has used her volunteer t i m e to be a keep me on my toes, and I am energized by
leader in her community and beyond. Kandyce their leadership and desire to do so many
is a member o f the U o f Tennessee's A l u m n i great things."
Association Women's Council, a recent
president of the Junior League of Knoxville, Melissa says v o l u n t e e r i n g w i t h A O I I and as a
Inc., a current member o f the AOII Foundation leadership team member for her community
Scholarship Committee and an active member Bible study group gives her another outlet
and past president o f the A O I I K n o x v i l l e for m a k i n g an impact aside f r o m her most
Alumnae Chapter. i m p o r t a n t role as mother to t w o - y e a r - o l d t w i n
boys. " M y volunteer work with A O I I and in
A n attorney, Kandyce recommends using skills my c o m m u n i t y helps me feel connected to the
other than "work" skills when you volunteer. outside world and allows me to contribute to
" I f you utilize your w o r k skills as your volunteer something I can call m y o w n . "
expertise, your volunteer activities may begin
to feel like w o r k , " she says. "Let volunteering I f you are considering getting involved i n your
be an o p p o r t u n i t y to explore another side o f community, whether for professional, personal
yourself, maybe a more creative side you don't or altruistic reasons, Kandyce Harber offers
use f r o m 9 to 5." this advice, "Stop t h i n k i n g about it and get
involved!" She acknowledges, " I have been
The real reason Kandyce is an active volunteer more involved w i t h A O I I as an alumna than I
is the connection she makes w i t h others in her was as a collegian, and it has been a r e w a r d i n g
community. "Although I am "retired" from the experience every step o f the way."
practice o f law, I t h i n k o f volunteering as my
avocation. Spending time w i t h others w h o share By: Amy McCormick Dawson,
a c o m m o n goal is always very energizing and Omicron (U of Tennessee), AOII Foundation
personally f u l f i l l i n g for me," she adds. "There Scholarship Committee Member,
is n o t h i n g more rewarding and inspiring than Atlanta Alumnae Chapter.

2f> • T o DRACHMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2(108


Not sure of where you would like to volunteer within AOII? There are many opportunities
available on the international level, and you can learn about the specific job descriptions,
qualifications and how to apply on the AOII web site under AOII For A Lifetime. Hundreds of our
AOII sisters would say that the most rewarding volunteer experiences are found at the collegiate
chapter level by serving on an Alumnae Advisory Committee (AAC). From Financial Adviser
to Recruitment Adviser, Philanthropic Adviser to Chapter Adviser, there is possibly a position
waiting just for you.

The following collegiate chapters currently report an opening in one or more positions on their
Alumnae Advisory Committee. Is there a chapter near you that needs your help? For more
specific information, contact Amanda Smith, Director of Collegiate Services at AOII HQ,
[email protected] or (615) 370-0920.


Alpha Chi Western Kentucky U Lambda Eta Grand Valley State U
Alpha Delta U of Alabama Lambda Omicron Cumberland U
Alpha Theta Coe College Mu Lambda Rollins College
Beta Tau U of Toronto Nu Beta U of Mississippi
Chi Epsilon The O h i o State U Omega Miami U
Chi Lambda U of Evansville Omega Omicron Lambuth U
Chi Phi U of South Carolina - Aiken Omega Upsilon OhioU
Chi Psi California Polytechnic State U Phi Sigma U of Nebraska Kearney
Chi Theta Northeastern State U Pi Alpha U of Louisville
Delta Tufts U Rho Beta Virginia Commonwealth U
Delta Lambda Columbus State U Rho Delta Sam ford U
Delta Pi U of Central Missouri Sigma Alpha West Virginia U
Delta Sigma San Jose State U Sigma Beta Saint Joseph's U
Delta Upsilon Duke U Sigma Chi Hartwick College
Delta X i Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology Sigma Phi California State U Northridge
Epsilon Chi Elon U Tau Delta Birmingham Southern College
Epsilon Omega Eastern Kentucky U Tau Gamma Eastern Washington U
Gamma U of Maine Tau Lambda Shippensburg U
Gamma Delta U of South Alabama Tau Omicron U o f Tennessee - Martin
Gamma Omicron U of Florida Theta Beta Towson U
Gamma Theta U of South Florida Theta Chi Morningside College
Iota U of Illinois Theta Pi Wagner College
Iota Chi U of Western Ontario Upsilon Lambda U o f Texas San Antonio
Iota Sigma Iowa State U Xi U of Oklahoma
Kappa Alpha Indiana State U Xi Omicron U of Arkansas
Kappa Omega U of Kentucky Zeta U o f Nebraska Lincoln
Kappa Omicron Rhodes College Zeta Pi U of Alabama Birmingham
Lambda Alpha U o f La Verne Zeta Psi East Carolina U
Lambda Chi LaGrange College

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008 To DRAGMA • 27

Buying a New Home

The Road to Closing

Are you in the market for a new home?
Buying a home is a major financial
commitment and can be a scary thing
especially with all the volatility in today's
mortgage rates and housing prices,
but most financial experts will still tell you
it is actually a good time to be a buyer.

2 8 • To DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

Can You Afford to Buy a Home? Insurance: Homeowners Insurance covers your
new home and its contents and Title Insurance
It begins and ends w i t h money. Over the long covers you i f the sale of the home was somehow
term, buying a home is usually more cost- fraudulent. These costs w i l l vary greatly due to the
effective than renting one. I f you are i n the early cost of your home and contents.
stages o f this decision process, you might find it
helpful to check out one of the numerous "Buy Repairs: Rarely is a home perfect. I f the home
vs. Rent Calculators" or the "Loan Calculators you are purchasing needs repairs, either necessary
" available online (i.e., or desired, it is always wise to budget funds to
O n l i n e educational resources like these are cover these expenses.
available all over the Internet and go a long way
to help simplify the process. Just plug i n numbers Moving Costs: These costs w i l l vary depending
appropriate to your situation and quickly see the on how you move and how far, but anyway around
results. Once you are convinced that you are it, you can assume that m o v i n g w i l l cost you
ready to enter the market, you might find it helpful significant money. The average interstate move
to get pre-approved by a mortgage lender. You costs $3,000 or more. M o v i n g also involves new
simply fill out a loan application and receive back home hook up fees for utilities.
a letter stating the maximum amount a bank will
be w i l l i n g to lend you based on your income, debt Why Hire a Real Estate Agent
and credit score. N o w that you k n o w what you and Mortgage Broker?
can actually afford, you and your Realtor can begin
l o o k i n g at what is available i n your price range. It's advisable to hire a professional real estate agent
Keep in mind your lifestyle when putting total faith and a mortgage broker to work for you. Though not
in the amount that a lender says y o u can afford. required, a Realtor w i l l make the process easier and
D o you expect to take an expensive annual family more understandable for you. Real estate values, the
vacation, plan to trade automobiles every other year process and laws are local and subject to change. It is
or regularly go overboard w i t h the credit card? I f more than just finding a property. It is insuring that
so, you'll do yourself a great favor by staying well you understand your options and get the best deal
under that m a x i m u m purchase amount. possible negotiated for you. The services are usually
free to the buyer because the seller pays the agent's
In addition to the purchase price of a new home, there fees. Personal references are the way to go i f you
are numerous up-front costs that you should be aware have the contacts, or you can find reputable Realtors
of when deciding i f you can afford to buy now: and brokers through numerous online sources. Your
Realtor can recommend a mortgage broker or you
D o w n Payment: Typically 5-20% of the purchase can enlist one yourself Visit the National Association
price of a home is required up front in a one-time of Mortgage Brokers ( for a broker
cash payment. Buyers who opt to play less than required to adhere to a strict code of ethics.
20% usually are required to pay an additional private
mortgage insurance, k n o w n as P M I . Location, Location, Location

C l o s i n g Cost: These are the fees that lenders Once you k n o w how much you can afford, how
charge for processing a loan. They usually range do you find the right neighborhood and the right
1-5% o f the purchase price. home for you? Your Realtor w i l l be a valuable
resource, o f course, but you can also find a world
Property Taxes: These are the state and/or local of information on your o w n . It's a different world
taxes that are levied on your home. This can usually than just a few years ago as related to buying a new
can be estimated at 1% of the purchase price per year. home. Realtor websites, such as C E N T U R Y 21
or R e / M a x , can help you locate homes for sale

in your neighborhood or across the country i n just Basic Terms
a few seconds. Photos, virtual tours and videos
mean you can shop the market right f r o m you home Mortgage banker - This is a lender, bank or company that provides loans.
computer quickly and efficiently, helping narrow
the field down for personal visits. I f you are not up Mortgage broker-This is a person or firm that arranges loans from multiple lenders.
for a kitchen remodel, turquoise kitchen counters
in the online virtual tour you just took could easily Pre-approval - This is a lender's promise to supply you with a specific loan amount
eliminate that option! Local resources such as the for a mortgage. It is subject to a final guarantee.
library and chamber o f commerce can provide data
on the area and don't hesitate to drive by through the Pre-qualifications: This is a lender's informal estimate of the maximum you would
neighborhoods you are considering at various times be allow to borrow.
o f the day to observe things such as traffic patterns or
the number o f children playing outside. Credit Bureau Score- This is a number showing how likely you are to default on a
loan and it is based on your credit history. You can go to www.annualcreditreport.
The neighborhood you live i n w i l l have a big impact com to check your credit in advance and correct potential mistakes it could include.
on the appreciation value of your potential new
home. When considering neighborhoods, keep in Down payment - This is the amount of a home's price you must pay in cash, usually
mind the commuting distance to your job, presence 5-20%.
o f families similar to you in terms o f age, occupation
and family status, shopping, exercise and leisure Annual percentage rate (APR) - This is the yearly interest on a loan. It includes
needs, good school system, low crime rate, and fees and other costs so you can compare offers from different lenders. The lower
strong services and amenities. Good neighborhoods the APR, the better.
usually bring a higher price tag, so i f these are
out of your price range, consider up-and-coming Appraisal - This is an estimate of a property's value which is usually required. Lend-
neighborhoods which often lie on the outskirts o f ers usually won't approve a loan for more than this figure.
established ones and have great potential for you to
buy into early and watch home prices increase. Closing attorney or escrow agent - A neutral party, this person works with all par-
ties involved - the lender, title insurance company, buyer and seller to make certain
How to Negotiate Like an Expert all the closing details come together without a glitch.

1. Understand mortgage payments so you k n o w Lock-in - This is a lender's guarantee that you can secure a specific interest rate if
how much house you can afford. your loan is closed within a certain period.
2. Make an offer that reflects the market. Your
Realtor can supply current market stats. Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) - This protects the lender if you default on a
3. Point out the property's flaws. Even i f it is not mortgage and is only required if your down payment is less than 20%.
important to you, your price adjustment from the
asking price should reflect those concerns. The Truth Behind the Jargon
4. Be open to compromise. The goal is for both
parties to feel like the deal was a fair one. Eben Burr, of Burr Tibbs Group d/w: dishwasher
5. Don't get emotional. A l l o w your Realtor to translates, sometimes humorously, exciting neighborhood: next to a
negotiate. some of the confusing jargon agents nightclub
6. T h i n k each decision through carefully. You w i l l use when describing homes in the MLS fdr: formal dining room
be living w i t h this major financial decision for years (Multiple gracious: totally meaningless
so don't feel pressure to act too quickly. Listing Service). home office: room with no windows
7. Be mentally prepared to walk away f r o m a bad Ir: living room
deal. You'll thank yourself later. ac: acre no expense spared: tacky
appls: appliances partial views: if you lean out the window,
ba: bath you can see it
br/bd: bedroom peaceful oasis: far from everything
bring your decorator: bring your showcase home: some decorator's
wrecking ball twisted fantasy
charming/has character: see "bring spac: spacious
your decorator" starter home: a grown-up should not
cists: closets live like this
converted 2 bedroom: one bedroom, stu: studio
half a living room and a closet totally renovated: cheap fixtures and 49
cute: small coats of paint
desirable location: expensive unique: too weird to buy
dk: deck w/w cpt: wall-to-wall carpet.
d r driveway

30 • To DKAGMA • FALL 2 0 0 8

Types of Loans That May Be Available Top Ten Buying Tips

F i x e d R a t e - The interest rate never changes over the life o f the 1. D o n ' t buy i f you can't stay .
loan. Ideal i f rates are low and you plan to live there a long time.
2. Get your credit i n good shape before you buy.
Adjustable R a t e Mortgage ( A R M ) - The rate fluctuates,
usually after a fixed period - for example a 5/1 A R M is fixed 3. Buy o n l y as m u c h home as you can really afford.
for 5 years, then fluctuates every year after that based on current
lending rates. Ideal i f you are expecting to sell the home in a 4. Don't w o r r y i f you can't put d o w n the usual 20%.
couple years.
5. B u y i n a district w i t h good schools.
Interest O n l y - This loan allows you to pay only the interest for
a set number o f years - usually 5-10. Risky but an option i f you 6. Get professional help f r o m a Realtor. ^
expect to be earning considerably more i n a few year f r o m now
and feel certain the housing market i n your area w i l l increase. 7. L o c k - i n interest rates carefully.

Piggyback - The loan combines t w o mortgages and is an option 8. Before house hunting, get pre-approved.
i f you are short on cash.
9. D o y o u r h o m e w o r k before bidding.
F H A - This loan is insured by the government's Federal Housing
Administration, making it easier for you to get approved even if 10. Get the home inspected.
you can not afford the 20% down payment. Ideal for buyers who
are short on cash or have a bad credit history. C(^^ "Do You Have Credibility?" Visit To
Dragma online or Fulfilling the Promise
B a l l o o n - This loan has a low fixed monthly payment for a set website to find out.
period then one large payment is due for the remaining balance.
Good i f you expect to sell before the final payment is due and
expect the property to appreciate quickly.

The Road to Closing Timeline

I T 3-5 weeks to closing 1 week to closing 1 day to closing Closing Day
• Get homeowners' • Get a cashier's • Final walkthrough • Celebration Dinner
3-4 months to Closing 1-2 months to closing of the house
• Get a copy of your • Sign a purchase insurance check for closing
credit report • Arrange for utilities costs
• Make a budget and contract at new home
• Lock your mortgage • Receive official
determine how much
you can afford product and rate with mortgage
• Begin the mortgage advise of your lender commitment letter
process by getting • Have the home from lender
pre-approved by a inspected
mortgage banker
• Hire a Realtor as
your agent

o DRAGMA • 31


Nikki Mendicino
American Girl Gives Back

"All I say is thank you. To most young adults and children, the vets around the country, and N i k k i was
mention of World War I I or the Vietnam soon invited to speak at the American
For ten years, all I have had War brings to m i n d text book pages, Legion Convention. She was only
to give is a thank you, which old war movies, and maybe a black eleven years old.
and white photo o f a grandparent or
doesn't even compare to the relative f r o m a much earlier time. Like Ten years after that first Veterans Day
an old u n i f o r m packed away, faded and program, N i k k i hasn't stopped her
weathered are the tales o f many veterans fight. Keeping a schedule full o f support
who risked their lives to fight for their rallies, meetings with lawmakers,
country. Years after their service, many visits to veterans' hospitals, and w i t h
feel they are fighting a different k i n d invitations to speak c o m i n g f r o m all
o f battle, some struggling to f i n d w o r k , over the country, N i k k i truly lives for
medical care, and disability benefits. her cause. Currently a student at George
Mason U i n V i r g i n i a , she is studying
sacrifices they madefor me." Nikki Mendicino, Gamma Alpha government and international politics.
(George Mason U ) was only ten years W h a t else w o u l d y o u expect f r o m
1 old when she decided that it was her someone w i t h plans to become a lobbyist
duty to help educate her generation in Washington D.C.?
about US veterans and their stories or
the "real history," as she says. D u r i n g a Some may wonder what a 20-year-old
Veterans Day program at her elementary college student has to say that w i l l keep
school, N i k k i met W W I I veteran, the interest of thousands of veterans
John K r i d l o . As she listened to h i m and active servicemen and women,
speak, N i k k i was humbled as she stared as w e l l as keep her traveling almost
at the 80-year-old soldier, now i n a every weekend. " A l l I say is thank
wheelchair, holding his medals, one o f y o u , " N i k k i says. "For ten years, all I
w h i c h was the Purple Heart. M r . K r i d l o have had to give is a thank you, w h i c h
made more o f an impact that day than doesn't even compare to the sacrifices
he probably ever imagined. Little did they made for me." Her message is
he k n o w that one young listener would simple, but it has touched the lives o f
make it her mission to raise awareness veterans, military families, and her
on veterans' issues and fight for the peers. " I tell them that there is g o o d i n
ones w h o fought for her country by my generation and that we do care. I
becoming one o f the loudest civilian stress h o w m u c h m y life was changed
voices i n the United States to ever speak by talking to one man and encourage
about the topic. other veterans to share their stories
with youth."
Soon after meeting M r . Kridlo, N i k k i
started a web site thanking US veterans She has spoken at R o l l i n g Thunder
for their service as her way o f " g i v i n g gatherings, Veterans Day events,
back." The site generated the interest o f Memorial Day tributes, and countless
patriotic events.
Nikki poses during one of her speaking events.

32 • To DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008

Official White House Photo-Chris Greenber

Her efforts have been recognized by Action. She has touched the lives o f the and packages to send to soldiers overseas.
various military officials, community families of these men and women with her Undoubtedly, N i k k i has become a part
groups, and US politicians, including promise to "never forget." of the military community, and is often
President George Bush, who even asked w h y she, herself, does not enlist.
invited her to the White House N i k k i enrolled in George Mason U , According to N i k k i , her role is best
Christmas party last year. Newspaper because she wanted to be close to served as an advocate fighting for the
articles, media appearances, and a feature Washington D.C., but found another rights o f her heroes, the thousands of
in Seventeen magazine have helped reason to love her campus in the women Americans who have served their time
N i k k i to spread her message. N i k k i of Alpha Omicron Pi: "When I went in the military.
also keeps an updated account o f her through recruitment, I was so surprised
experiences by posting photographs and to learn how much volunteering and "Bills need to be passed and our veterans
messages on a Myspace page, w w w . business goes into being a sorority. 1 really need to be taken care of, and I want related to the girls, and could tell they to be the one to fight for them," she
were excited about my cause," she says. says. " I want to ensure that those w h o
In addition to speaking on behalf of US are enlisting today w i l l be provided for
veterans, N i k k i has made it a goal to spread N i k k i has given A O I I the opportunity when they come home."
awareness and share the stories of American to share in her passions, organizing
POWs and soldiers listed as Missing i n sisterhood events to make Valentines

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8 I n DIUCMA • 33


(2G Collegians and alumnae joined together April 4-6, 2008, to celebrate 100 years o f
Delta Chapter sisterhood at Tufts U . Delta Chapter was founded April 13, 1908, as
Tufts U the 10th chapter o f Alpha Omicron Pi and is the 4th active chapter to celebrate its
100th anniversary.
A p r i l 13, 1908
Centennial weekend kicked-off on Friday evening w i t h an open house reception for
university faculty, staffand A O I I alumnae at the chapter house. 1 display boards showcased
Delta Chapter photos and memorabilia from the past 100 years, and members gave tours
of the chapter's house to visitors. "It was so beautiful to see alumnae from the 1950s to
recent alumnae sharing their scrapbooks and memories w i t h Delta's current collegians.
Every A O I I , no matter what generation, truly shares so much in common," says Allison
McCarthy, co-chairman of the Centennial Committee. "It was a wonderful weekend,
one I w i l l never forget."

Saturday began w i t h a sisterhood brunch w i t h alumnae followed by Ritual,
conducted by International President Susan Danko. Many alumnae and collegiate
members agreed that this Ritual was the highlight o f the weekend and were deeply
moved by the symbolic display o f our shared bond o f AOII's guiding principles,
which have remained unchanged for the past 100 years. "Sharing R i t u a l gave me
perspective on where I come from as a Delta and as an A O I I , " said Carly DiClemente,
Delta Chapter Vice President of Membership Recruitment.

Later that evening, the chapter hosted dinner and dancing at a Rose Ball for alumnae,
collegians, and their guests at Moseley's on the Charles. Keynote speakers were Susan
Danko, International President; Janet Siegel, A O I I Foundation Director and Delta
alumna; and Lisa Haubenstock, Delta Chapter President. "We're proud to celebrate
with the Delta Chapter the quality o f women, their ambition and standards, and the
diversity among them," Susan Danko said in her address.

The weekend concluded with a barbecue held on the Tufts campus for alumnae and
their families. Everyone enjoyed the opportunity to swap stories o f college years
past, and share where life has taken them after graduation. "It was wonderful to catch
up w i t h old friends, meet sisters f r o m many different classes, and reminisce about
Delta's history," Melissa Faubert, former Delta Chapter Adviser, commented.

A double brick will be placed at A O I I International Headquarters in recognition of this
anniversary. In further honor of this milestone, a Delta Centennial Scholarship has also
been established with the AOII Foundation. To date, $6,000 has been raised and we are
still actively encouraging contributions. Donations can be made online at http://www. or by mailing a check to the A O I I Foundation
with a note that funds be directed to the Delta Centennial Scholarship.

We would like to thank everyone w h o joined Delta Chapter in celebration of this
momentous occasion, and express our gratitude to every individual sister who has
participated in the maintenance and development o f our chapter since 1908. We
look forward to beginning another 100 years o f A O I I sisterhood at Tufts!

By Kathleen Niple, Epsilon Chi (Elon U),
Laurel Zeidman, Delta (Tufts U) and
Christina Martinez, Delta (Tufts U )

34 • To DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008


O n April 4-6 2008, collegiate and alumnae members of Gamma Chapter celebrated U ofMaine
100 years o f sisterhood on the U o f Maine campus. Gamma Chapter was founded on
April 14, 1908, and is the oldest sorority at the University o f Maine. A p r i l 14, 1908

The weekend kicked o f f with a meet and greet in the collegiate chapter room. This
gave alumnae the chance to reminisce over old photos, composites dating back to
the early 1900s and chapter scrapbooks. Saturday morning began with a campus
tour for alumnae led by a few collegians. Everyone enjoyed the opportunity to see
what has changed on campus since their o w n undergraduate years. Mid-morning,
sisters gathered for a Ritual workshop led by Ginger Banks in the recreation center.
The chapter then performed an intimate and memorable Ritual where over f i f t y
collegians and alumnae gathered to reaffirm the values and beliefs on which Alpha
Omicron Pi stands.

Saturday night, Jeffs Catering i n Brewer hosted our Rose Ball. Alumnae, collegians,
and their guests enjoyed dinner and speeches f r o m Dean o f Students Robert Dana;
Ginger Banks, PIP; Greek Life Adviser Gus Burkett; and Chapter President A m y
Adams. One o f the oldest Gamma Chapter traditions is our pledge/new member
class plaques that are designed, signed by all members and presented to the chapter
upon initiation to hang on the wall o f our chapter room. Keeping with tradition, a
Centennial plaque was constructed for every member in attendance to sign. There
was also a raffle, and Centennial sweatshirts for alumnae to keep in memory o f the
weekend! I n true Gamma Chapter fashion, everyone then headed out to the dance
floor, only stepping away, briefly, for cake and photos!

Sunday morning wrapped up the weekend w i t h a goodbye brunch in the Buchanan
A l u m n i Hall. A slideshow o f the past weekend's events was shown and everyone
shared something w i t h the group about their Gamma Chapter experience over the
years. It was over coffee and bagels that sisters o f all different ages came together
and shared final thoughts about the past 100 years and what they hoped for the
future of Gamma Chapter.

The celebrating o f Gamma's 100th year did not end that weekend. In July, Gamma
alumnae gathered in Portland, Maine for the first ever alumnae barbecue. Sisters
f r o m near and far who were unable to attend the events held at the U o f Maine were
able to experience the same feeling o f sisterhood in a similar environment. Alumnae
are hoping to make this a regular event that brings the sisters back together even after
their collegiate years. The closing event o f Gamma's Centennial recognition, an
alumnae brunch, w i l l occur on October 25 during the U o f Maine's Homecoming
weekend. The display o f sisterhood and the bond between the amazing women who
have been involved w i t h Gamma Chapter over the past 100 years has been truly
magnificent. The chapter is excited to continue the mission of Alpha Omicron Pi
into our second century.

By Rachael Rogers, Gamma ( U of Maine)
andjenessa Knowlton, Gamma ( U of Maine)

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8 To DRAGMA • 35

emocracy ^ M a [ o n

A O I I sisters, regardless of what country they live in, are proud participants in the democratic voting processes. Many
American A O I I sisters w i l l cast their votes on November 4th for various local, state, and national initiatives. For
some of us, our candidates w i l l win. For some of us, our candidates will not. Regardless of the outcome, each sister's
conscious decision to participate helps to determine the future of our country. Next summer, sisters will gather in
Tampa, Florida, for Convention 2009 to rekindle the spirit of sisterhood and to decide the future of our fraternity
dirough the Executive Board elections. This exciting time for our fraternity only comes every two years,

In 1939, Stella George Stern Perry stated, "We wanted voice their hopes and dreams for the future by getting
to be sure of a democratic fraternity, democratic involved in the ballot development process.
in choosing members, democratic in internal
government so that all members to come must share So how can you get involved in the
our responsibility and feel bound to exercise for Executive Board elections process?
themselves the motives that impelled the Founders."
Some sisters may feel they do not have a voice in the Educate yourself on the candidates and
process, but nothing could be further from the truth! the process. Information regarding the ballot
It has been said that those in the majority and who development process, including the Nominating
have the power to vote, make the decisions. However, Trustees timeline, is already available on M y A O I I
one could argue that it is those who voice their opinion (the private side of the A O I I web site) for members to
that have the power because they have the opportunity review. Around December 1, 2008, the Nominating
and privilege to influence the majority who w i l l vote. Trustees w i l l post die names of all candidates who are
eligible to be placed on one or both ot the ballots in the
This year there is more to the election than just spring. Candidate profiles w i l l also be posted on M y
who w i l l lead the fraternity i n the next biennium. A O I I . Get to know the candidates by reviewing their
Following years of study, the current Executive information in order to learn more about them and
Board is proposing a bylaw amendment that w i l l their goals for A O I I .
change the Executive Board roles to a governance-
style board. This proposal w i l l be presented at Join the 2009 Executive Board Elections Group
Convention for approval by Council. I f the proposal on A O I I ' s inCircle. This is something that you
is adopted, the Executive Board of A O I I w i l l cease can do today by simply logging on to inCircle and
to function as an operational-style board and w i l l joining the 2009 X B Elections group. When you
become a governance-style board. You can read join the group you are instantly connected to more
details about each of these style boards on the private than 150 other sisters who currendy have an interest
side of the A O I I website. in learning more about the candidates by participating
in discussion forums. You can even begin to pose
W h a t does this mean for the ballot development questions to candidates starting February 15th. It's
process? It means that the Nominating Trustees also a great way to connect with other sisters who
w i l l be developing two different ballots to bring share similar hopes and dreams for the future of the
to Convention: a ballot of candidates for the fraternity. Don't forget that you can learn about the
operational-style board and a ballot of candidates candidates or communicate with them directly by
for the governance-style board. Women who connecting on their personal inCircle page as well.
are interested i n serving the fraternity through a
leadership position on the next Executive Board Nominate a sister! You don't have to be attending
have already submitted their interest forms for Convention to throw your support behind a
consideration by the Nominating Trustees for one or candidate. Let the Nominating Trustees know that
both ballots. A l l A O I I members are encouraged to

36 • To DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008

you would like to nominate your candidate for further Cast your vote! Council members should start
consideration after candidates are posted in December. planning now to attend Convention in Tampa.
Nominations are due January 15th so don't delay! Prepare for convention by reading The Call to
Convention and finalizing your vote.
Contact the Nominating Trustees to provide
feedback on the candidates. After the eligible Our founders laid the legacy of service for us and
candidate information is posted on My AOII in provided us with a framework that has stood the test
December, the Nominating Trustees are open to of time. Stella felt strongly that "we are founded and
receivingfeedbackon the candidates. Sisters who constituted in a way so elastic, that, while holding
have had personal interaction with a candidate and fast to all essential traditions, we are adjustable to
uhat have strong feelings about said candidate should changes and modern needs; and our experiences and
communicate this to die Nominating Trustees. traditions and purposes have had enough testing in
Information on how to communicate will be provided time to make their worth an assurance rather than
on My AOII once the candidates are announced in a promise." Past members of the Executive Board
December. Allfeedbackneeds to be communicated have stated that it was a life-changing experience
no later than January 15, 2009! to serve the fraternity. It was one that they would
remember forever. This is a tremendous opportunity
Review the initial ballot! The Nominating for you to give back to AOII what it has given you,
Trustees will announce the initial ballots around an opportunity to truly promote AOII for a lifetime
February 15, 2009, Review the ballots and continue by investing your time in the process.
to provide a voice to the process by participating in
the discussion forum on inCircle. All feedback and
additional nominations concerning the initial ballots
must be received by March 1st!

Hold discussions in your r
collegiate and alumnae
chapters. For those sisters
who are able to be a
part of an alumnae or
collegiate chapter, it is
important that you
hold discussions
about the future of
the fraternity and
the candidates
who are looking
to serve. It is
never too early
to begin these
with other sisters
in your chapter.
Learn about the
proposed bylaw
changes to the
Board. Encourage
members to review the
candidate profiles on My
A O I I or to join the inCircle
discussion groups. Study our
Ritual and hold discussions on the
timelessness of our ideals as it relates
to the future of our fraternity.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008

r"1 u PRJ

AOII Launches A New Educational Web site

Fulfilling the Promise is a new education web site that honors
AOII's commitment to Lifelong Learning. Joining AOil's growing
family of web sites, Fulfilling the Promise is all about continuing
education and furthering awareness about the topics important
to women and, most importantly, YOU. The site offers exciting
learning opportunities through current topics of interest,
interactive quizzes, and insights from our own AOII members
who have the knowledge to teach and inspire!

Articles will help test your knowledge in categories about
money, making healthy choices and the challenges our world
faces. You'll learn how to "talk the talk" and "walk the walk"
in sections focusing on conversation skills and navigating life's
milestones and service. There is even a special welcome new
member section. Included under each topic is an interactive
quiz featuring 10 questions to test what you already know or
have just learned about the selected topic. Just answer ten
short questions and your quiz results are instantaneous. We
hope you will be inspired to visit Fulfilling the Promise often: or find a link from
AOII's main site under the Lifelong Learning tab.

Made possible through a grant from the AOII Foundation,
Fulfilling the Promise is a resource that is not just exclusive to
the Fraternity. Accessible to the public, AOII hopes this site will
engage others in learning and will provide a glimpse into the
mission and purpose of Alpha Omicron Pi. We welcome the
opportunity to share an important part of our Fraternity with the
world around us.

3 8 • To DRAOMA ISSUE NO. 1 00!

Here are just a few examples of the topics you can
learn more about on the Fulfilling the Promise web site:

Fulfillins the Promise Fulfillins the Promise

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..... itr 'Promise
Resources: Tate the pi Take the

life After Collejsc. I 2^ U I Z

L i(i Mil. k:\tm rips RclittHTiiiii Resource I 1 • :• A. i'a |.>I
•mooch the transition-

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ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8 To DRAGMA • 39

The following article on texting and driving is one example of the
many topics you will currently find on the new web site.



What are the costs o f texting? Depending on your service provider, you may say 2 0 cents per message or an
extra $5.99 per month for unlimited messaging, but for those w h o have experienced tragedy due to T W O
(texting while driving) nothing is worth the price they paid for quick communication.

Imagine driving down the interstate at 65 miles per hour and looking toward the lane next to you to discover
that another driver is reading the newspaper. Would it make you nervous? W h a t i f you saw someone typing
on their laptop as they merged into traffic? H o w about i f they were playing a handheld video game? Yes,
you would most likely be concerned for your safety. After all, driving can be dangerous enough, before you
add in distractions. So, w h y would you do anything to increase your risk o f an accident?

Risky Business Increasing Trend

You learned in Drivers' Education to check your Texting on the road has become a problem. One
could easily blame it on teenagers and college aged
blind spot, keep two hands on the wheel, and to drivers, but adults o f all ages have admitted to not
only texting, but checking and sending emails
keep f r o m following too close behind another through handheld devices. Beyond that, phones
vehicle, and for the most part you obey those rules, today are capable o f sending and receiving faxes,
but suddenly an issue arises, much too important surfing the Internet, and playing streaming video
to ignore: " C o i n 2 Emily's 2nite?" a text message and television. Drivers may not understand just
asks. " I D K maybe," you respond.. .it only took how much o f a distraction that cell phones are,
five seconds. " U should. Where u at?" pops up as but one study conducted at the University o f Utah
your phone beeps at you. You check your rearview concluded that: "Impairments associated w i t h using
mirror, pick up the phone again and respond a cell phone while driving can be as profound as
quickly, you've hit the buttons so many times you those associated w i t h driving while drunk."
don't even have to look d o w n as you are typing.
You have it under control, that is, until something Obviously, driving while under the influence of
tragic happens or you experience a close call. It alcohol is illegal and considered unacceptable by
may only seem like a few seconds o f multi tasking, society, but driving under the influence o f cell
but those few seconds put you at risk for a tragedy. phone waves is only illegal in a handful o f states. I f
texting meant losing your license or being labeled
"Any time you take your hands, eyes or brain as a vehicular criminal, w o u l d you risk it? Perhaps,
o f f the wheel it's not good," says John Ulczycki, the facts w i l l help you to put that cell phone away.
Director of Transportation Safety for the National
Safety Council. " W i t h text messaging, you take all
three off the wheel."

4 0 • T o DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

Facts Fulfilling the Promise

• Driver distraction is a major contributor to automobile crashes. MMM • J3$ Textihg whil
A A A reports that between 4,000 and 8,000 crashes related to Speak&Mc "riving
distracted driving occur each day in the United States. FUylni 11 Sn»rt
l^idint die Wty
• In a Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. survey, 20% of drivers Sew Mrmhen
between the age of 18 and 60 admitted to texting while driving. Stt-r.Arch

• In a recent study of 19 to 24-year-old conducted by the Resources:
University of Utah at Salt Lake City, drivers who texted while
driving were six times more likely to cause an accident. Take the
• The study f o u n d that the response time for breaking was 23%
slower when drivers were texting. R U Crazy? oDfToWyouDk7now the dangers Get Industry Insight

• Washington is the first state to have banned texting while
driving and other states and cities are currently working to pass
legislation to make TWD illegal.

• Over a trillion text messages were sent in the world in 2006.

• A A A Auto Group reports that cell phone use accounts for 2,600
vehicle fatalities and 300,000 collisions annually.

• Texting while driving has been linked to numerous fatalities
including the deaths of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and
the drivers of other vehicles. You are not just putting yourself at
risk, but others on the road.

Recent headlines relay the price one Unfortunately, these are just a few o f the tragic headlines. A d d
can pay for texting. to that the number o f non-fatal accidents that aren't specifically
reported as texting related. The growing number o f accidents
In the News on the road has led many states and cities to examine banning
texting while driving and complete cell phone use by motorists.
• "Train Engineer in Deadly Crash was Texting on Job," Click here for a list o f Cell Phone Laws by State.
A California train crash this summer left 25 dead and another
135 injured. The engineer was sending and receiving text So ask yourself, is that message worth the risk? What would
messages during his shift. you have done i n the good ole days o f 1992? Cell phones really
have only been popular for the past decade. Before that, how
• "Did Text Messaging While Driving Play a Part in a Fatal Crash?" did people get hold o f you? Is that message you are sending so
Five teenage girls were killed in an accident on New York roads. important it can't wait until you arrive safely at your destination
A text message was sent and received 38 seconds before the to respond?
driver swerved into traffic and hit a truck head on, killing herself
and four passengers in her SUV. Would you risk your life or someone else's for that text?

• "Bicyclist Hit and Killed, Driver was TWD." RU Crazy?
A Colorado teen was texting and driving when he hit and killed
a 63-year-old grandfather. When he looked up from his phone,
it was too late to swerve out of the way.

• "Driver Crossed Center Line While Texting."
Two women in Phoenix were killed in a head on collision. One
of the drivers was text messaging right before the crash
occurred, and the distraction caused her to drift into the
opposite lane.

• "Man Texting While Driving When He Hit Teen with SUV."
A Massachusetts man was texting behind the wheel when he
lost control of his SUV and hit what he thought was a mailbox.
He didn't realize until he was returning down the road that he
had hit a person, a 13-year-old boy who died from his injuries.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008 To DKAGMA • 41


University of Alabama
Installed: February 25, 1967
Sub-motto: "Always Devoted"

When a single chapter contributes more than $22,000 Two separate philanthropic events contributed to the
to the AOII Foundation for arthritis research in a overall dollars raised. The chapter could easily have
single year, it's obvious they've found the secret to rested their philanthropic laurels on the results of the
philanthropic success. To recognize that success, the their annual fall Backyard Bash, but they followed that
A O I I Foundation honored Alpha Delta with the 2007- blockbuster hit with an enormously successful spring
2008 Sheaf Award for Excellence in Fund Raising Run for Roses 5-K W a l k / R u n . Backyard Bash is
- Total Giving. Chapter honors aside, Alpha Delta a barbecue held at the chapter house before a home
is equally proud o f how their entire chapter pulled football game. Live music and a jewelry vendor added
together all year long to accomplish their lofty fund to the entertainment value for guests, family
raising goals. "Everyone was able to get involved in and friends.
some way and that helped our chapter feel like we
were really making a difference," says Alpha Delta's To
Dragma Reporter and Alabama Panhellenic President
Erin Cornelius.


Then last spring, Alpha Delta hosted their first Run for
Roses 5-K road race and recruited involvement from
the entire city o f Tuscaloosa. More than 1,000 runners
participated including Big A L , UA's elephant mascot.
The race was followed by a cook-out on the quad with
a band and raffle, then a dinner and silent auction later
that evening in Bryant-Denny Stadium for family,
friends and alumnae. Proceeds from this multi-layer
fund raiser plus local sponsor support led to big returns
for the A O I I Foundation and arthritis research.

Philanthropy is not the only thing in which Alpha
Delta excels. Recruitment on their highly competitive
campus is outstanding. So far this fall, their new
member class o f 84 is the largest among all A O I I
chapters. Despite the daunting numbers, the chapter
strives to create and maintain a warm, friendly
atmosphere to show how the chapter is excited to
have each and every one as a new sister. Erin adds,
"Though this new member class is rather large, we
are putting i n the extra effort needed to make each
individual new member experience unique
and enjoyable."

At 224 members strong, Alpha Delta is accustomed The chapter is especially proud of their recent It is easy to
to dealing with big numbers. They do a good job improvements in overall chapter GFA, which came see how strong
of keeping everyone in the loop through an Internet about through hard work and implementation of a our sisterhood
based communications program called the Gin System. new academic policy. You'll find AOIIs involved i n is through
They work hard at building sisterhood, too. The just about every thing on campus, including Student the eager
chapter's Sisterhood Chairman also plans f u n events Government Association, Freshmen Forum, Senate involvement
such as days at the lake, pool parties, make-overs, and positions, every campus honorary, and the Panhellenic of our entire
renting out movie theaters and skating rinks which Executive Board. Erin explains, " I t is easy to see how chapter in
always have high attendance. That's right - it sometimes strong our sisterhood is through the eager involvement everything
takes an entire movie theater or an entire skating of our entire chapter in everything we do." we do."
rink to bring this big chapter together in one place. It
sometimes requires creative thinking but the results are Looking toward the future, this strong chapter
worthwhile. During chapter dinners, a hot bar off to intends to continue building on their excellence in
the side handles overflow after all the tables have been philanthropic activities, recruitment and sisterhood.
filled and extra chairs are always brought in to handle Alpha Delta constantly strives to reflect a positive image
needed seating for chapter meetings. for A O I I in all aspects of chapter operations, as well as
campus and community public relations. Alpha Delta's
Chapter meetings always emphasize sisterhood. For ongoing success, in so many aspects, is AOH's reward.
example, multiple "sister of the week" nominees are
recognized each week to illustrate how often sisters go
out of their way for each other. Sisterhood is part of the
daily experience at Alpha Delta, too. The chapter house
is constantly bustling with girls coming, going, hanging
out and having fun.

In addition to the Foundation Sheaf Award, the chapter
also received several other honors at Leadership Institute
this past summer including the Chapter Challenge
which is an award to the chapter whose alumnae made
the most honor gifts to the A O I I Foundation in honor
of their chapter.

ISSUE N O . 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8 To DRAOMA • 43

Missy Jenkins
I Choose to be Happy

December 1, 1997 started like any other Paducah Kentucky's Heath High School. As part of"her mission to educate and
school day. Missy Jenkins, 1 )elta Omega When it was all over, three students were prevent student violence. Missy speaks at
(Murray State U) and her twin sister Mandy killed and another five were injured. Missy a variety of conferences and assemblies.
were awakened by her father's morning Jenkins was among those injured, and was It was during one of these instances that
wake up ritual of bursting into his daughters' instantly paralyzed from the chest down. Bill Croyle, a reporter for the Kentucky
room and singing a made up song at the Amidst the chaos, she lay on the floor, Enquirer learned of Missy's story. He was
top of his lungs. Reluctantly. Missy got out unable to feel her stomach and legs, not instantly amazed by her compassion and
of bed and struggled to get ready and out understanding what had happened. Coming unselfishness. As he listened to her explain
the door on time for class. The few extra to her sister's side, Mandy crawled across the that she had forgiven Michael Carneal on
minutes she had spent in bed that morning floor to help Missy. Despite her own state o f the day of the shooting. Bill thought she
had left her rushed and prevented her from shock, Mandy managed to explain that there must be exaggerating. He came to learn,
saying her usual " I love you" to her parents. had been a gun, and that Michael Cameal however; that was what made Missy so
When the girls arrived at school, Missy was had been the one who brought it. Missy was unique. She refused to be a victim and
thankful they had made it in time for the confused. What would bring a 14-year-old allowed herself the gift of forgiveness. She
morning prayer circle she had been regularly boy, her friend, to do such a thing? shared w i t h the audience that she would
attending. As she walked in the building, one day like to talk to Michael about his
she was eager to catch up with friends and Missy has spent every day since the thoughts and emotions in an attempt to
classmates about the long weekend. One shooting trying to answer this question. make sense of why seemingly normal
of those classmates was Michael Carneal, Far beyond personal reasons, Missy kids can snap. Inspired by her story, Bill
one of Missy's friends f r o m band. Michael has tried to understand the mind-set contacted Missy and asked her i f she had
however, had much different intentions for of people like Michael in an attempt to ever considered writing a book. The idea
the first day back to school. prevent further tragedies from occurring. of writing her story had always been in
Nearly eleven years after the day that the back of her mind, but she had never
After participating in the prayer circle. left Missy paralyzed, she now works to found the right time in her life to do so.
Missy walked across Heath H i g h School's counsel children and teens w i t h anger Bill happened to have perfect timing, and
lobby to collect her book bag before issues. She made the decision long ago the t w o began meeting once a week to
heading to first period class. The first day that the shooting was not going to hold collaborate on a manuscript. What resulted
back to classes after Thanksgiving break; her back f r o m any o f her goals. Believing was / Choose to be Happy.
she anticipated the day would drag along, that she had an opportunity too valuable
but all it took was a matter of seconds to to waste, Missy hopes to bring awareness Available in stores this October, / Choose to
change Missy's life forever. A t 7:40 a.m. to issues such as bullying, depression, be Happy tells the story of the effect that a
shots we're fired through the lobby of the and mental health. school shooting had on a community and
school systems across the country. It is a
lite lesson on the power of forgiveness and
compassion and taking on whatever life
sends your way. It is the story of how one
woman, just like you or I , has chosen to
leave anger and blame behind and not let
tragedy interfere w i t h her plans.

issy shares a smile with her son Logan. After the shooting. Missy returned to high
school the following May. She graduated
44 • T o DRAGMA and went on to attend college at Murray
State University i n Murray, KY. She and
her sister were the first members of her
family to graduate from college. When
Mandy decided not to go through sorority
recruitment. Missy decided she still wanted

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2008

A reason to be happy:
Missy with her husband,
Josh, and their son, Logan.

to learn more about Greek life. Missy
joined the Delta Omega Chapter o f Alpha
Omicron Pi at M S U . Confined to a
wheelchair since the accident, it was the first
time she had done something independent
from her t w i n since the shooting. She
quickly found a whole new group of friends
in A O I I who supported and took care o f
her just like her biological family. Missy
credits A O I I for some of her strongest
friendships and memories and for the social
opportunities that led her to meet Josh
Smith, the man she would later marry.

Michael Cameal was sentenced to life i n
prison i n La Grange, Kentucky. Ten years
into his sentence, he met face to face with
the consequences of his actions. In July
2007 Missy paid a visit to the prison. At
the time, she was pregnant with her son
Logan, and because of her injuries could
not feel her baby kicking inside of her. It
was one of life's joys that had been taken
from her. Missy came to the prison seeking
answers. Staring into the eyes of her former
classmate, Missy began to ask Michael
Carneal "Why?"

/ Choose to be Happy details that meeting the impact of each of our actions. "What "Allowing yourself to
between Missy and Michael Carneal and happened that day, didn't just affect the forgive others provides a
provides rare insight into the mind of a students at Heath H i g h School, it affected tremendous release and
school shooter. a community, a nation, and the entire is an important part of
world. Violence is not the answer, and moving on and looking
"Talking with Michael was the closet thing you can get help," she says. toward the future."
to closure I could find," Missy shares.
Missy also hopes that her story will help
Published by Langmarc Publishing, / Choose others to realize the importance
to be Happy: A School Shooting Sunwor's of forgiveness. "Forgiveness is very
Triumph Over Tragedy can be purchased powerful," she shares. "Allowing yourself to
at major bookstores or by visiting w w w . forgive others provides a tremendous release where you can read and is an important part of moving on and
more about Missy's story. Written by Missy looking toward the future. Many people
Jenkins with William Croyle, the book has don't understand why I chose to forgive, but
been endorsed by Diane Sawyer of A B C 1 made the decision to be happy and to live
News and Robin Meade of C N N . my life, and forgiveness was a part of that."

Missy hopes the book w i l l send a message
to students, teachers, and parents about

Issur. N O . I • FALL 2008 To DRAGMA

TY•R,eAUTY Reality Fan Favorites

Deep down you may aspire to be a fashion designer
who works to have your line appear at Fashion Week
in New York. Maybe, you wish you could be a super
model, traveling the world with an entourage of stylists,
makeup artists, and photographers. Perhaps you long
to be a rock star, or just date one; and maybe you think
it would be great to be stranded on an island with 15
strangers. Or, maybe, like millions of people, you'd
rather sit back and watch others jump through hoops,
endure drama, and put themselves i n countless situations
as they fight their way to become the next big reality fan
favorite by becoming a contestant on a reality television
show. Whether you love them or hate them, reality
television programs are in demand and seem to be here
to stay. Now, the Emmy's even have categories for best
reality T V show and best host. The honors went to the
Amazing Race and to Jeff Probst from Survivor in 2008.

By Erin Burcham, Many claim that reality T V started with the Real Reality television programs can range f r o m truly
Zeta (U of Nebraska-Lincoln), World on M T V in 1992 when the music channel educational to strictly entertaining. \ce Road
Assistant Editor chronicled the (true) story o f seven strangers 'Truckers on the History Channel documents brave
picked to live i n a house and have their lives truckers w h o transport goods over 200 miles across
taped. Others w i l l say it dates back to unscripted frozen lakes and terrain i n arctic areas during the
shows such as Candid Camera f r o m the early 1940s. harshest o f weather conditions. Other programs
Documentaries and contestant competitions take viewers into the lives o f those w o r k i n g i n law
blended to form the reality T V that has taken the enforcement, tattoo parlors, hair salons, hospitals,
world by storm in the last decade. and even mortuaries allowing us to learn a few
things about some interesting professions.
So, w h y is it that we are so drawn to these shows?
Some viewers actually feel guilty about watching Our TVs help tune us i n to the lives o f celebrities,
reality shows, not actually wanting to admit that even ones we probably never really wanted to
they enjoy this particular type of programming, know more about. Shows like the one that follows
but the true reality is that hundreds o f T V shows the life o f wrestler H u l k Hogan, Hogm Knows Best
fall into this category, making it almost impossible or Scott Baio's quest to become a husband and
to hide from the mania. family man have been put into a category k n o w n
as "celebreality."
History buffs and V H 1 junkies alike can both say
they watch "reality T V . "

4 6 • T o DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

Each week, many o f us tune i n to watch be a contestant. Hollie didn't hear back f r o m
competition and elimination shows on the the show until a year later when she was asked i f
major networks. she would be interested in auditioning for season
four. After several months and steps to get there,
Here you f i n d American Idol, and many fan favorites Hollie landed a spot as a member o f the black
such as Survivor, the Apprentice, and Dancing with the team on the Biggest Loser season four. She admits
Stars. These reality show competitors are a part that being a contestant on the show is as hard as
of the prime time experience, many becoming it looks, "multiplied by ten." Hollie was a part
household names sure to stir office chatter the next o f a secret team that trained in the desert. "We
day. Have you ever found yourself in a discussion trained w i t h our trainers four to six hours a day,
talking about a contestant as i f they were a close plus any additional exercising we wanted to do
friend? Example: "Jesse was a much better pick individually." After participating in a specific
for DeAnna on the Bachelorette because their goals meal plan and learning more about her abilities
are so similar and he can truly give her what she is and determination, Hollie proudly made it to the
looking for." We get absorbed in the shows as the final round. The hardest part o f her challenge was
contestants become a part o f our lives. returning to the real world to train on her own for
the finale. Even without the help o f her trainer, she
Other shows such as Project Runway or America's lost 100 pounds at her final weigh in, and placed
Next Top Model target female audiences and dig second runner up i n the competition.
deeper into specific industries w i t h contestants
participating in a variety o f industry related Inspired by her experience on television, Hollie
challenges i n order to launch their careers. Some relocated to California where she currently works
o f us are touched by the stories o f individuals and for a production company, the same company that
families w h o are a part o f self improvement and produces The Biggest Loser for N B C . She hopes
makeover shows such as Extreme Makeover: Home to work her way up through the business. She
Edition and Oprah's Big Give. is proud to say that she has kept o f f most o f the
weight she lost. She reminds herself that staying
We watch social experiments such as Wife Swap and healthy is her priority, but doesn't beat herself up
witness people do crazy things for a million dollars, for eating certain foods, because that, is reality.
including completing obstacle courses, eating bugs, "You can accomplish it i f you make time," she says.
and racing around the world.

Whether you are a fan or not, it is hard to escape u •
reality T V . What would you do to be a part of a -
reality show? I f you can dream it, it can more than
likely be the plot for a reality show. Photo courtesy of NBC

AOII Sisters are Reality Show
Fan Favorites

Hollie Self, Theta Omega (Northern Arizona

U ) had been a big fan o f N B C ' s The Biggest Loser,
the show where contestants battle it out to get i n
shape, to ultimately be the biggest loser. After
watching the second season o f the show, she
decided to attend an open casting call in Las Vegas
for the show's upcoming season. After making
the trip from Arizona and catching a few hours
o f sleep in a parking lot, she finally met w i t h the
casting directors for a total o f seven minutes. She
made it through a few more rounds, including
making a video describing w h y she wanted to

ISSUE N O . 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8 To DRAGMA • 4 7

Parvati currently lives in Los Angeles days later Jeff received a call telling h i m
where she stays busy with speaking he had made it to the next round, but this
engagements and working w i t h the time to "bring Jennifer." After a lengthy
charity Knockouts for Girls, a non profit process o f tests and interviews, Jennifer
group that raises scholarship money and was chosen as one o f the 18 contestants on
provides mentoring through boxing season four o f the Apprentice. W h e n she
lessons for underprivileged girls. Parvati received the news, she had only t w o weeks
donated $ 5 0 , 0 0 0 of her Survivor winnings to pack up her things, get her company
to the charity. in order and say goodbye to her husband
and t w o young children. Jennifer spent
Parvati Shallow, Lambda Sigma ( U four weeks as a contestant on the show,
and the entire filming process living N e w
of Georgia) has made two appearances York. She admits it was very hard being
on Survivor. She first starred on Survivor: away f r o m her children, but being a part
Cook Islands, where she placed sixth. Later, o f the Apprentice has certainly helped her
she was asked to become a contestant on to grow as a professional. Today, she and
Survivor: Micronesia's "Fans versus Favorites." her husband still o w n the same successful
After immunity challenges, endurance real estate business they did when Jennifer
competitions, and surviving tribal council was on the show, but now are a part o f a
each week, Parvati made it to the final new online network company. As far as
two. In a live broadcast, Parvati plead her working with Donald Trump: "What you
case to the group o f tribal j u r y members see is what you get," Jennifer says. " H o w
made up of recently dismissed contestants. he appears on television, is how he is on
Going into the finale, Parvati came real life. There was no second take when
prepared to argue why she should be the it came to his lines."
winner of the one million dollar prize.
In an interview with ClK^ If you are a Reality TV fanatic, be sure
she shared: " I thought that I did have a to join the Hooked on Reality TV
chance because I knew how I was going interest group on inCircle,
to position my arguments in the final
Tribal Council. I knew I was going to alphaomicronpi/auth/login.
have to go w i t h , 'Hey, you need to stand
your ground. I made the moves that I Jennifer Langford Wallen, Delta
made and I'm not going to apologize for
them. It's outwit, outplay outlast. That's Omega (Murray State U), and former
the name o f the game.' That's what I did." AOII Chapter Consultant, actually
Her strategy worked, and Parvati won encouraged her husband, Jeff, to audition
Survivor: Micronesia's million dollar grand for season four of the Apprentice. Both
prize. Sisters f r o m all over N o r t h America were real estate entrepreneurs and when
tuned in and cheered as they watched an the opportunity to attend a casting
AOII w i n one of the most popular reality call came up, she sent h i m . W h e n her
competitions on TV. husband met with the casting crew with
his resume and a few photographs, they
asked h i m about the woman in one o f his
pictures. Jeffbragged that Jennifer also
was a strong candidate for the show. A few

48 • To DRAGMA ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

Charting: our Future

The fall is invigorating, partly because it is a time o f change - not just w i t h the weather and the
trees, but for people, too. Students o f all ages return to school, new activities start and families adjust
to new schedules. Some o f the change is brought on by our o w n decisions and some by external
factors that drive, and sometimes inspire, change. Likewise, the most successful organizations find
inspiration in change, too. For quite awhile, A O I I has been positioning itself to embark on a journey
o f organizational change. It is a weighty challenge, but one that is invigorating, inspiring, and most
importantly, imperative.

Research, statistical analysis and evaluation of AOII's operations has been underway for several
years. Although there were many positive and successful aspects of the current structure, the need for
organizational change has become clear. The proposed new structure w i l l consist o f t e n geographic
districts which w i l l include both collegiate and alumnae chapters. A separate colony district w i l l serve our
newly-formed and youngest chapters. By uniting the alumnae and collegiate chapters together w i t h i n
one district, pathways of communication as well as events, developmental workshops, and trainings w i l l
become more collaborative. This increased visibility w i l l ultimately foster more interaction between
collegiate and alumnae members and offer a broader view of lifetime involvement in A O I I .

Building upon the philosophy that change should move A O I I to maximizing the strengths o f each
volunteer and staff member w i t h i n the district structure, several new roles have been developed to offer
unique opportunities to use expertise. The areas o f expertise include values, service, marketing, finance,
and leadership. For collegiate chapters, a volunteer w i l l serve as a specialist in one area and seek to infuse
this focus into all aspects of chapter function. Therefore, five Collegiate Specialists w i l l offer their talents
i n five different speciality areas. A Collegiate District Administrator w i l l be the central contact for the
team function as she assesses and monitors chapter operations to coordinate the specialists' involvement
throughout the district. A n Alumnae Specialist for alumnae chapters i n the district w i l l work w i t h an
Alumnae District Administrator to provide the needed support to alumnae chapters in the five focus
areas o f values, service, marketing, finance, and leadership. The entire district team w i l l seek to view
the district more as one operational area w i t h multiple components rather than having a collegiate and
alumnae separation. Through ongoing communication and monthly phone calls for the team, they w i l l
work together to address challenges that arise and explore ways to build solutions together.

ISSUE NO. 1 • FALL 2 0 0 8

Over the past three years, a task force and numerous individuals painstakingly evaluated options that led to the
proposal submitted in March 2 0 0 8 . The A O I I Executive Board's confidence in this proposal led to a vote to test
the efficiency of this new district process for the 2 0 0 8 - 2 0 0 9 academic year. This test w i l l be k n o w n as our Beta
District, and a few selected collegiate and alumnae chapters w i l l participate.

Beta District Collegiate Chapters Beta District Alumnae Chapters
Alpha Chi (Western Kentucky U ) ; Chi Lambda Jonesboro (Arkansas), Little Rock Area (Arkansas),
( U of Evansville); Delta Omega (Murray State U ) ; Evansville/Tri-State (Indiana), Bowling Green
Epsilon Omega( Eastern Kentucky U ) ; Kappa Omega (Kentucky), Central K Y Bluegrass (Kentucky),
(U o f Kentucky); Kappa Omicron (Rhodes College); Kentucky Lakes (Kentucky), Lexington (Kentucky),
N u Beta ( U o f Mississippi); Omega O m i c r o n and Memphis Area (Tennessee)
(Lambuth U ) ; Sigma O m i c r o n (Arkansas State U ) ; Tau
Omega (Transylvania U); and Tau Omicron
( U of Tennessee at Martin).

In January 2 0 0 9 , a second Beta District w i l l begin in order to test additional aspects o f the proposed structure including the
coordination and viability of a district w i t h a remote staff component. The Beta 2 District w i l l include the following collegiate
chapters: Epsilon Gamma ( U o f Northern Colorado); Phi Sigma ( U o f Nebraska - Kearney); Zeta ( U o f Nebraska - Lincoln);
Alpha Theta (Coe College); Iota Sigma (Iowa State U ) ; Theta C h i (Morningside College); Tau ( U o f Minnesota); Kappa
Sigma ( U of Wisconsin - River Falls); Delta Pi (Central Missouri State U ) ; and Epsilon Sigma (Quincy U ) . Alumnae chapters
in the Beta 2 District w i l l include: Denver (Colorado), Rocky Mountain (Colorado), Lincoln (Nebraska), Kearney (Nebraska),
Omaha (Nebraska), Minneapolis/St. Paul (Minnesota), Madison (Wisconsin), Greater Kansas City (Missouri), St. Louis
(Missouri), and Central New Mexico.

At convention 2 0 0 9 , a f u l l report on the evaluation o f each Beta District w i l l be provided. D u r i n g convention, a vote w i l l
propose that Council suspend the fraternity bylaws that relate to structure i n order that the district design can be studied i n -
depth and the new structure voted upon in 2 0 1 1 .

This is a very exciting time for Alpha O m i c r o n Pi, and we are extremely proud to be able to offer our chapters more attention
in each specialty area. Through the enhanced collaboration and connectivity, we are w o r k i n g to exceed expectations for our
members both today and in generations to come!


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