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Jan 05 2016
by Jayde Anzola

Why Joining a Sorority Was the Best Thing To Happen To Me

By Jayde Anzola - Jan 05 2016
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I wasn't your typical "I never saw myself in a sorority" girl while going through formal recruitment. I kind of always knew I wanted to join Greek life, and that I wanted to join a sorority. For me, it was just a matter of finding the right sisterhood for me. With 18 Panhellenic sororities that participate in formal recruitment, I just knew I was going to find my forever home in one of them. 

Formal recruitment was actually really good for me, mostly due to the fact that I learned how to "small talk" to different kinds of girls and how to connect with them as quickly as possible, and to engage them in a conversation. I got to dress nicely and really portray myself as a classy girl which was something that really helped to boost my confidence. Sure, it hurt a little when I didn't get called back to some of the houses I ranked higher, but nonetheless, I learned to deal with rejection positively and how to just be myself. During recruitment, I rarely felt as if I had to pretend to be someone that I wasn't, and that helped me to find my current house. It was good for me to be who I really was because, while in high school, it was easy to mold to what everyone else thought you were. 

I didn't have a great senior year much like most of my current peers due to some social/friend issues, and I didn't come to my college having a ton of super close BFFs like I expected to. So getting this little card saying that a sorority welcomed me with love to their sisterhood as a member was so heartwarming for me because I knew I had so many new friends and importantly new sisters waiting to meet me. And that quickly became the case. I was welcomed with hugs, smiles, laughs, adorable bid day pictures (every girl that had a formal recruitment bid day has hundreds!!!), learning how to "throw what I know", and most importantly getting told how happy they all were to have me and the rest of the new pledge class welcomed to our sisterhood. It made the ride of formal recruitment so worth the blisters and lost voice! 

Going through new member ed really brought our pledge class together, much like with any pledge class, and my pledge class of the Alpha Eta's quickly became tightly knit and we all grew to be super close. It was so awesome having so many girls that were freshman/sophomores that we could hang out with. From study dates in the library, Chipotle runs, dining court dates, movie nights, coffee dates, and adventures around campus, I personally made so many memories with pretty much every single girl in my pledge class. 

Adding to how close I am with my pledge class, I gained several older sisters including my amazing Big to look out for me and to be my go-to with advice and rant sessions. I'm the oldest of three girls, and I never had an older sister to go to. So gaining some of the older sisters was a huge blessing to me. I can't begin to count the number of times that they would offer me a seat by them in the library to study with them, offered to drive me to my night exams, answered my questions about the house and life in general, or even just listened to me talk for hours about the same things. They all encouraged me to participate in the Purdue University Dance Marathon for Riley Hospital for Children, and that was easily the most inspiring 18 hours I've ever experienced. Getting my Big was one of the best moments I experienced during my first semester, and I was even blessed enough to get a twin as well, and they both quickly became two of my best friends. 

Actually being in a sorority has shown me that there is way more to any sorority than just being social with sisters and other members of the Greek community. Having girls that are there for you no matter the situation has given me this overwhelming sense of being apart of something truly bigger than myself. I want to be a better person just from being around some really cool and amazing girls. 

Much like the girls I met during formal recruitment, I love my house and I wouldn't change it for anything. I found my home and my sisterhood, and I can't wait to continue to grow as a person and to see our chapter grow as well. I hope to be on the general board and the executive board in the future, and I absolutely cannot wait to get my own Little. I hope that my involvement in my house helps me to experience things that I wouldn't otherwise. 

"First you're a part of it. And then it becomes a part of you." 

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Jayde Anzola - Purdue University

Jayde is a freshman at Purdue University studying Public Relations and Communications with a minor in Spanish. When she's not writing, you can find her wandering around campus with her camera, FaceTiming her mom, or rewatching Gossip Girl. You can follow her on Instagram @jaydeanzola!

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