When I transferred to Temple University my sophomore year, I didn’t know anyone. It was the first time I truly knew no one on my college campus, not even my roommates.
Although we share an apartment, my roommates have friend groups and previous experiences on campus, and our routines and lives are very different. This isn’t a bad thing, but I felt completely alone in navigating the complexity of university social life.
For many, roommates act as lifelines for making friends, so not being close with mine often feels like a major disadvantage. I had to make friends outside of my apartment. When the loneliness became too much, I did what I knew best, I got involved.
After joining Tri Delta, I participated in sisterhood events, community service events and weekly meetings, where I made an effort to introduce myself to the new people I met. I didn’t know many women on campus, so becoming part of such a strong support system has helped build my confidence.
Joining Greek life is something I always wanted to do since middle school and high school because I’ve grown up with many family members in sororities, who always described what an amazing opportunity it was.
In August, I attended Temple Fest, a fair for clubs to present information about their organizations at booths and tables for interested students. During the fair, some Greek life chapters on campus participated in informal recruitment, which was a process to help sophomores and upperclassmen who couldn’t be involved last year join sororities. It was a great way for me to meet new members who were also transfers looking to make friends.
Ultimately, I accepted my bid to Tri Delta because I saw myself in a lot of the girls there. Many of them were active in other organizations I’m involved in on campus and have similar interests as I do, like favorite music artists and TV shows.
Often the stigma around sororities is they are disingenuous, but we all come from different backgrounds, majors and experiences. I came to college to be surrounded by people who are similar to me while also being exposed to different cultures and experiences. Joining a sorority with an inclusive and positive environment is important to me because it makes the Greek experience more genuine and realistic
Before my first chapter meeting, I paced nervously around my apartment checking myself in the mirror and waiting until it was an appropriate time to leave. Looking at my reflection for the last time, I took a deep breath and smiled at myself in an attempt to relax my nerves.
Upon walking into the chapter, I sat down next to some of the new members, and I began to awkwardly introduce myself to my neighbors.
Soon, I felt comfortable and at home during the new member process because of how quickly I got involved.
After my first week as a new member, I participated in our annual St. Jude 5k and a food drive. As I continued to get involved, I became familiar with more girls in Tri Delta. By the time I became a full member, I was comfortable with new members and the older members of the chapter.
Joining a sorority was my first time making new friends since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020. I was nervous and awkward, but Greek life has been the best way for me to meet new people.
Now, I confidently walk into the weekly meetings, waving hello to the familiar faces I didn’t know in September, but now call my sisters.
Meetings and events that allow me to meet people daily, and having some interaction with other people gives me something to look forward to, helping me feel less lonely than when I moved onto campus in August.
I’ve met some of my best friends, participated in philanthropy and community service events and different socials with other Greek organizations.
Since joining, I feel further embraced by campus life, and I feel more motivated than ever to get involved.