With only a few weeks left until Fall 2015 sorority recruitment begins, I started thinking about all the reasons I am glad I went through the recruitment process at NYU just one year ago. I decided to rush my sophomore year and it was one of the best decisions I’ve made. It not only made a large school a little bit smaller, but allowed me to meet my best friends at NYU and get involved with my school, community, and numerous organizations.
One of the first questions people ask me when they find out I’m in a sorority is “oh so do you have a Big or whatever that is?” Yes, I do have a Big, and a GrandBig, and even a Great-GrandBig. I have an entire Fam in ZTA, we have brunches together every time my Great-GrandBig is in town and we try to get together as often as possible. Yes, we have Big-Little week in which the littles are spoiled with numerous Zeta Tau Alpha paraphernalia, candies, and cupcakes. More than the gifts though, we are showered with love and are connected with a girl who acts as an older sister. Yes, it is also true that every Little thinks their Big is the best, but mine really is.
I have a fam, but what is more important than that is the entire sisterhood I became a part of when I joined ZTA. Almost every photo I post on social media (which is a lot) are with a sister of mine. We get to attend events together, like going to the Central Park Zoo with my Pledge Class or watching Part 1 of the final of Hunger Games with thirty other girls, taking over an entire theater. Because I switched schools so often throughout middle and high school, I never had the type of girlfriends I gained through ZTA; more like sisters than besties. In Zeta Tau Alpha, we have the saying “my sister, my responsibility” and that really goes to heart with all of my sisters, who treat each other more like blood relatives than just friends that are a part of the same organization.
NYU is an extremely large school, especially when compared to my previous school of 1,000 students ranging from Kindergarten to 12th grade. While I always saw students I recognized or knew, it was nothing like my senior class of 85 students, all of whom I knew really well. Joining ZTA not only made me part of a group within NYU of about 150 girls, but also led me to a community of Greek life of around 1,500 students.
Simply being a part of Greek life at NYU automatically connects members of different chapters together. We understand what NYDM (New York Dance Marathon) is and all look forward to dancing for hours on end, we get the craze of recruitment and preparing for it, we take #panhellove pictures, and we all know the struggle of getting anything done during Greek Week. While every fraternity and sorority may have a different philanthropy, we still try to show some love for each other and get involved in other’s activities because it benefits us all.
Every fraternity and sorority has their own specific philanthropy that they raise awareness and funds for during the year. Zeta Tau Alpha’s philanthropy is breast cancer awareness and education. The fraternity carries out “Big Man On Campus” on almost every campus where there is a chapter in the United States, raising money for the Zeta Foundation. There are not only philanthropy events for my own chapter, but many other events to participate in. Many events, such as NYDM, include participants from every chapter with friendly competitions to raise the most money for the cause.
Without a sorority (or fraternity) there are so many options for participating in community service, it can be hard to even participate. I found that my freshman year I did not take part in any service because it was too difficult to figure out what I could help with. In Zeta Tau Alpha it’s easier and more fun, not only because I’m participating in service with my friends but I know I am making an impact when there are thousands of other Zetas around the world participating in similar events to raise as much awareness and money as possible.
Overall, I can’t imagine loving NYU as much as I do, if I didn’t have my sisters by my side.