|2013-2014 Leadership Consultants|
(Top left to bottom right: Katie, Lauren, Katherine, Kashia,
Haley, Morgan, Caroline, Grace, Logan, Courtney)
Grand Convention was a whirlwind of informative sessions, cheering for several award-winning chapters, and of course meeting my amazing Consultant Sisters!
Alpha Delta Pi’s from all over the United States and Canada gathered for the 162nd Grand Convention in Dallas, TX. While the week was full of fun, there was also a lot of business to be done. The next Grand Council was elected, changes were made to our bylaws, and exciting new advances in Alpha Delta Pi programming were discussed.
The Grand Council for the 2013-2015 biennium is as follows:
International President – Tammie Pinkson
International VP of Collegiate Membership – Stacy Bruton
International VP of Collegiate Membership – Jan Maisch
[A special congratulations to District I’s very own Mrs. Maisch! We will miss you as District Team Director, but wish you the best on Grand Council!]
International VP of Alumnae Membership – Renee Iacona
International VP of Communications – Jennifer Siler
International VP of Finance – Emily Erkel
International VP of Organizational Relations – Sandy McDonald Davis
It was also announced that ADPi is the first National Panhellenic Council organization to digitize their archives. Our history is now available at the click of a button. You are now able to look up a plethora of information on our sisterhood - all the way from our founding sister Eugenia Tucker Fitzgerald to editions of the Adelphean magazine.
Alpha Delta Pi is continually reevaluating its programs and organization in order to maximize efficiency and ensure growth. The next year will bring exciting changes to our Total Membership Education Program. In the Fall of 2013 we are piloting a TME Program at selected chapters in which the new member period will be extended. If all goes well, chapters will be trained on the new program in the Spring of 2014 at the six District Leadership Conferences across the nation. This new program will help the transition into membership and the lessons built into the membership period will be more engaging.
The session I found most interesting was the Panel Discussion on Higher Education and the Greek System. The panel discussed what they would like to see the Greek community work on, pressing issues facing college students, and emerging trends for students in higher education. The Greek Community is sometimes seen as a bunch of people gathering to party, get drunk and talk about the latest gossip. This is far from reality since this community is heavily engaged in team building, leadership training, and philanthropic endeavors. The problem, as one panelist mentioned, is that we are not adequately communicating to our school’s faculty who often think academics fall second to Greek life. Greeks have to show that academics are a number one priority and when we do accomplish great things – like raising $1 million dollars for Ronald McDonald House Charities – faculty and administration have to be clued in on that perhaps via a biannual newsletter.
When discussing pressing issues facing college students today many of the panelists pointed to mental health. Women – and men – need to be advocates for their own mental health and we have to create an environment in which it is ok to talk about these issues. There are many resources at each campus regarding mental health – you can talk to your chapter advisors and fraternity sorority advisor (FSA) or go to your counseling center. Chapter presidents in every Greek organization should make sure there is an easy to access list of available mental health resources on their campus.
Lastly, one emerging trend in higher education is the increasing numbers of veterans returning to school. We should think about how we can help their transition and evaluate ways in which the Greek community can work with the Veteran Student Association on days of remembrance and philanthropy events.
In closing, International President Tammie Pinkston reminded us that, “organizational change is a function of head, hands and heart.” There are changes approaching for Alpha Delta Pi and the Greek community as a whole. We need to use our heads to brainstorm ways to grow and succeed, our hands to put the plan in motion, and our hearts to see that it is carried through with passion and strength.