Greek leaders garner awards
After meeting with representatives of Greek organizations from other universities at the Northeast Greek Leadership Association Conference in Pittsburgh last weekend, Dartmouth students who attended returned with several awards and new ideas about Greek goals and values.
Two attendees, Kevin Watkins '03 and Leah Wright '03, received "Greek Leaders of Distinction" awards, while the Panhellenic Council came home with three awards.
"The people facilitating the conference gave us a lot of insight on how to improve relationships between houses and between councils," said Soojung Rhee '04, President of Panhell and a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority.
Thirteen Dartmouth Greek leaders attended the conference, primarily representing the Panhellenic Council, the Inter-Fraternity Council, and the National Panhellenic Council. Members from Psi Upsilon fraternity and Alpha Xi Delta sorority also represented their chapters.
This was the first year that year the Dartmouth Panhellenic Concil received awards, winning three at the conference, including awards for Council Management, Leadership and Educational Development and Membership Recruitment.
Watkins and Wright were also honored for their positive involvement within and outside the Greek System.
Last year's programming chair for the IFC and for Psi U, Watkins was nominated for the award by Cassie Barnhardt, Assistant Dean of Residential Life, for his altruistic endeavors manifested through the Greek system and in the school and community. Some of Watkins' work has included raising money for the IFC to host a speaker on male violence last year, and organizing a benefit concert at Psi U in the fall to raise money for a battered woman with five children.
"The award is supposed to recognize people who apply their ideals to the Greek community," said Watkins. "It was nice to be recognized."
Wright, the other honored recipient of the award, is the President of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Incorporated, Lambda Chapter. She has also been the North-Atlantic regional chairperson for her sorority and the International Hostess for their international conference. Wright is also an intern in President Wright's house, a Mellon Fellow, and a member of the Palaeopitus senior society.
"It was a really nice experience and honor," Wright said. "I feel really proud of what I've done, but I think it's more than that, it was recognition for my chapter as a whole."
Dartmouth's Greek system is different from many of the others that were represented at the conference, specifically in regards to the College's policy of having rush in the middle of sophomore year.
"Most people were really positive about the whole experience, about meeting people form other schools, especially because Dartmouth has such a unique Greek system," said Rebecca Aledort '04, the Public Relations Chair for Panhell and member of Alpha Xi.
"Being there made me realize how lucky I am to be at this school. It's more of a community here, and not as institutional as in other schools," Rhee said.