By BRIAN BIGELOW | Assistant News Editor
On Wednesday night, Feb.23, Alpha Chi Omega made an hour-long presentation of their proposal for a new chapter at APSU, outlining their goals and values and its procedures for colonization. It is one of four sororities vying to be chosen for an opportunity to colonize on the APSU campus.
“[Alpha Chi Omega] is pretty selective” about where they apply for colonization, said Marsha Grady, Alpha Chi Omega national president. Grady said they look for “a good fit,” and “we like what we see on [the APSU] campus.”
Though the presenters stressed Alpha Chi Omega doesn’t take a cookie-cutter approach to colonization, the colonization process as outlined in Alpha Chi Omega’s informational material would begin in the spring and summer with a small marketing campaign directed towards current students.
The sorority will then assemble a local colonization committee, followed by a visit to APSU conducted by staff and volunteers that would include meeting with APSU’s Greek life and local alumnae to find the best process for colonization.
Alpha Chi Omega would then conduct a broader marketing campaign, create a website and Facebook page for the new chapter and hold a number of publicity events in the fall.
The new chapter would also initiate their new member program called “the Dedication” which includes an eight-week educational program to prepare colony members for initiation and chapter installation, followed by an initiation exam and the election of the chapter’s executive board.
The colonization process would culminate in the fall 2012 when the sorority will conduct its first formal recruitment.
Upon completion of the colonization process, Alpha Chi Omega proposes a three-year plan for developing the new chapter.
Alpha Chi Omega offers a “four-year guided education curriculum,” according to their information packet. This curriculum offers programs tailored to the development of its members based on their class-level, included courses that focus on socialization, academics, employment, money management and stress management, among others.
The goal of Alpha Chi Omega is “helping women to be the best they can be,” Grady said, adding that the organization’s focus is on helping women to make “lifelong connections they can use throughout their lives.”
“It’s definitely given me a strong sisterhood of support,” said Kate Williams, the Alpha Chi Omega chapter president from Vanderbilt University, noting the greatest benefits to her have been sisterhood, leadership and confidence.
“[Alpha Chi Omega will] have a positive influence on the Greek image on campus,” through involvement on campus and through community service, Williams said.
Two more sororities, Kappa Delta and Alpha Omicron Pi, will present their proposals on Friday, Feb. 25, and Wednesday, March 2. Alpha Gamma Delta presented on Monday, Feb. 21.