On Jan. 19, the current members of Gamma Phi Omega held an informational meeting for students who were interested in joining the sorority in the conference room at the student center. At the meeting, they learned more about the organization and goals of Gamma Phi Omega.
“Gamma Phi Omega was founded here at Lewis in December of 2004 and we currently have 65 members either undergraduate or already graduated,” said senior elementary education and Gamma Phi Omega president Erica Ortiz. “We definitely created an organization for a place of people with minorities or anyone who could gather and feel included.”
Currently, the sorority only has limited members in the chapter and they are currently recruiting.
“This year, there’s only two members because a lot of them graduated and we had some members graduate last semester,” said Ortiz.
The chapter meetings for the sorority vary by semester because they’re scheduled to fit everyone’s schedule.
“This semester, we meet on Wednesdays in the student center and that usually depends on everyone’s availability,” said Ortiz.
The four main goals of Gamma Phi Omega include academic excellence, community service, cultural awareness and sisterhood.
For the academic excellence goal, members are required to complete a minimum of 10 hours of study at public libraries weekly and maintain a cumulative grade point average of a 2.7. For the community service goal, they strive to give back to the community and are required to complete a certain amount of service hours.
“We definitely prioritize academics and we have set high standards for members to keep up with their grades,” said Ortiz. “We also focus on community service so last semester, we went to Feed My Starving Children and gave back to the community.”
For cultural awareness, Gamma Phi Omega welcomes women of all ethnicities and is built on Latina-oriented values. For sisterhood, the sorority unites women through its goals, activities and traditions, which in turn create bonds that will last a lifetime.
“We definitely focus on building those bonds with each other and we give that time commitment to really get to know each other,” said Ortiz. “Our motto is ‘now and forever’ so even after college, you have those bonds and continue to grow.”
Students interested in getting involved with Greek Life can attend the “Meet the Greeks” event, where sororities and fraternities on campus can promote their Greek Life organization.
“Usually each semester towards the beginning, depending on whatever is on the student engagement calendar, they hold this event on campus,” said Ortiz. “Then depending on each organization, there are different methods to be even more involved.”
All students are encouraged to be involved with Greek Life because Lewis is a very diverse school. Getting involved with a fraternity/sorority on campus can help students gain a better understanding and perspective of other cultures and embrace where they come from.
Being part of a sorority or fraternity can be very beneficial to one’s life. Making connections, building your resume and creating lifelong friendships are just a few of the benefits of being involved with Greek Life.
“I think it’s very beneficial not only for networking, because of course, depending on how big your sorority or fraternity is, there may be the same organization on different campuses,” said Ortiz. “So building those networks has definitely helped with developing leadership skills.”
Credit: Katelyn Leano