Katie's Story

Being an Alpha Xi Delta has caused, and continues to cause, such transformation and opportunity for growth in my life. Knowing that I get to serve students every day through my professional role is a tremendous privilege and extending that to include serving as Chapter Advisor for my home chapter, Theta Iota, has brought fulfillment and responsibility that I could not have imagined during my days as a collegian.

The incredible opportunity I have had to meet and learn from Sisters through this organization stands second to none--and seeing the inspiration go beyond campus for many of these women drives a fulfillment that is enough to move me to action. Some of the alumnae of the Theta Iota chapter have attributed their successes to their experiences at FAU and in Theta Iota. Knowing I was even a small part of that is a reminder that inspiring women to realize their potential is not just a beautiful slogan, it is a way of life. Women like Bailey Hamm, Amanda Cacapava, Morgan Donnelly, Paige Netting, Daniela Sampayo, Allie Mingo and others like them are the future. The best part of being involved with this organization is the chance to challenge and support our women while enabling them to lead in a very different world than it was when I was in college, a world that changes every day and begs for more light and laughter. It is experiences we create while in college such as serving Autism Speaks, the campus community and each other, that can make the world seem less bleak and knowing we are contributing to something larger than ourselves is a motivation to continue.

When we think about volunteering with chapters, it is a lot of time and effort... energy taken up to not just be responsive, but to try to be proactive and understand the higher education landscape, the students we are working with, the challenges of fraternity and sorority life today, the way Alpha Xi operates, and more. Understanding the risk management, the value of direct feedback and dialogue, the women who are determined to pave their own path and learn through experience, the tragedy that sometimes comes about, and resources available to our women through the institutions and national organization are critical to successfully advising and critical to the work we do.

Mentoring and the reciprocity of the relationships built in our organization are the lifeblood of fraternal bonds and showcase an immense power in being a part of the fraternity and sorority community.

I am most proud of, today, the resiliency and strength that the women of Theta Iota consistently exemplify in the face of tragedy and in the everyday struggles that women can either be mobilized by or defeated by. The positional leaders in the chapter keep it running and the Sisterhood makes it run with passion, force and energy capable of changing lives, universities and the world. Our FL chapters have been met by storm (literally) in the past year, they have been faced with the ultimate loss of Sisters, and they have decided to act, contribute and lead. This has been very difficult at times and very empowering at others... that we may share both joy and sorrow and bring into living reality the sisterhood of women is truly at play with these women.

The Sisterhood of Women that is exemplified in our most dark times of need is what I am most proud of. And what a privilege it has been to see it firsthand.

Written by Katie Burke, Florida Atlantic