Note to Self

Dana Finley - Delta Chapter, Boston University
Dana Finley – Delta Chapter, Boston University

As I write this blog post, I am sitting in my apartment in Myrtle Beach, beginning to contemplate the next four days–days in which I will pack up all my belongings and move back to Ohio for a few months until the next leg of my leadership consultant adventure begins (this time, as a Senior LC!).

It will not surprise anybody who knows me that I have already made several lists to prepare for this move–emails to finish, boxes to pack, people to say goodbye to. But over the last few weeks another list has been quietly accumulating itself in my head–all of the things that I have learned about myself, about Sigma Kappa, and about life since I accepted this role last April.

In the last year, my entire life has been turned upside down. I moved from Massachusetts to Ohio and then from Ohio to South Carolina in the course of a few months. I said some goodbyes to people who no longer fit in my life and said hello to a new home at Coastal Carolina University within a chapter of 130+ collegiate women. I bought my first car. I worked on three colonizations, one installation, and traveled from one coast to the other visiting Sigma Kappas. I made a new family out of the 16 other leadership consultants and learned how to communicate with my biological family when we are spread across three states. I got stuck in one tropical storm, one snowstorm, and missed a few flight connections along the way. I laughed, I cried, and sometimes I laughed and cried at the same time.

So in the last few weeks, that quiet list in the back of my head has become a note to myself–a note that I can look at and remind myself how far I have come, how much I have accomplished, and how much is still left in front of me to experience.


Saying “no” is a complete sentence.

Sometimes you want a kale salad. And sometimes you need a Cookout tray with a cheeseburger, hush puppies, onion rings and a milkshake. You don’t have to fit into one category or the other.

Trust your gut. It’s usually correct.

You can love someone with all your heart and they can still not be the right person for you–and that’s okay. It’s also okay to still miss them sometimes.

Don’t be mean to the airline employee, it’s (usually) not their fault. Instead, try to be the one kind person that they remember after a hard day at work. This logic also applies to pretty much all customer service representatives.

Try not to say “sorry” so much for things you shouldn’t be sorry for at all.

We don’t always get what we ask for, but we will often get exactly what we need.

It is still totally socially acceptable to sleep with a stuffed animal (or four…) when you are 23.

Say please and thank you. Tell people you appreciate them, that they are important to you, that they have made a difference in your life. These are the things that you will never look back and regret saying.

Golden retrievers > boyfriends.

When in doubt, the jean jacket and statement necklace are always the answer to any outfit dilemmas.

When someone shows you who they are, believe them.

TSA Precheck saves lives (right up there next to coffee).

Do one thing a day that scares you, and relish the feeling of triumph that comes after you realize that you are still alive after. Realize that you deserve to feel that way more often.

Most of all, believe that the best is always ahead of you, that the people put beside you are there for a reason, and that this moment is meant to be enjoyed. I am so blessed by my last 365 days, and I look forward to what year #2 holds for me!

Until next time,


An Open Letter to My Supervisor

Annie Forrest, Theta Zeta, University of Virginia
Annie Forrest, Theta Zeta, University of Virginia

Working at a national sorority’s headquarters is unlike any other experience in the world. Where else could I say that my teammates and supervisors are bound by the same promises to serve the organization as I am? They are bound by these promises because most of them are also initiated members of Sigma Kappa. It’s a commitment deeper than just signing a contract binding us to the same regulations and requirements. It’s a commitment to not only the organization, but also to to each other as sisters.

My supervisor does not get the credit she deserves. Her job does not end at 5:00 PM each day, nor do her weekends consist of radio silence from the office. Her office is not in one place; it is all over the country with each of the women she oversees. Her inbox is always full and her phone goes off literally 24/7. Her job is as much paperwork and reports as it is comforting my teammates and me when we’re upset. There is no limit to the number of hats she wears incredibly well or the roles between which she transitions flawlessly.

Although she is not physically present in Mobile, Alabama or Hickory, North Carolina with me, she gives me peace of mind knowing she is only a phone call or text away. Because of constant travel, late nights and an ever-changing schedule, I sometimes forget to tell her how much I appreciate what she does for me. I forget that she needs her cup to be filled, as well, as she so often does for me when I am in need of it. So, I hope this does the trick!

Elizabeth, there are so many things I didn’t know I didn’t know before I started this job, but you didn’t make me feel inadequate. There were difficulties I encountered that I didn’t foresee, but you didn’t make me feel weak for struggling. You understood me and my thought processes before I even understood them sometimes, but you let me try to figure things out for myself. There were personal impossibilities I couldn’t overcome, but you made me feel proud for even trying. There were personal impossibilities I did overcome (like living by myself) and you shared my successes with as much enthusiasm as I did. There were silly, little things that I needed (like extra locks on my front door), but you didn’t make me feel silly for needing them. There were times of frustration and hurt, but you always built me up instead of letting me give into those feelings.

Thank you for all those things. Thank you for answering emails I sent at 1:00 AM and then letting me call you early on a Sunday morning. Thank you for asking about my personal life each week. I knew you weren’t just asking to ask, but asking because you genuinely cared. Thank you for connecting me to extra resources, volunteers who could help me in my job search, and for supporting me in expressing my thoughts and opinions. Thank you for learning alongside me and for being interested in my passions. Thank you for the countless hours of advice, recommendations, and comfort. I felt comfortable sharing so much more than I thought I would with you. Thank you for being not only my supervisor, but also my sister and my friend.

Most of all, though, thank you for taking a chance on me. I am forever grateful for that.

The One That Made Me Cry

Morgan Chaney, Epsilon Mu, University of Missouri
Morgan Chaney, Epsilon Mu, University of Missouri

This is my last blog as a consultant this semester. The fact is hitting me for the first time as I write this that the semester is coming to an end, and I have to leave Indiana in a few short weeks — which still doesn’t seem real. This semester has been a whirlwind of coffee, conversations, laughs, smiles, hugs and learning experiences that I can’t wait to put into play as I continue my journey as a leadership consultant next semester. While I do get to continue my journey next semester, I’m sad to end the journey I’m currently on.

For those who know me, I’m a crier. I cry when I’m happy, when I’m sad, and anywhere in-between. As my roommate Brianna McKay, Kappa Eta, could tell you, I cry about everything from proposals to puppy videos, so writing this has been making me feel like this:


So this is the blog that makes me cry, and the one where I’m really able to say thank you to everyone that’s given me an amazing experience this semester.  So here we go…

To my family: Thank you for everything you’ve done for me this semester. Thank you for dealing with my hectic schedules, thank you for taking my phone calls at midnight, thank you for sending me care packages, and for making this home away from home feel closer to you all. I wouldn’t have had the courage to apply for this job without your constant encouragement, and I wouldn’t have made it through this semester without your constant support. You’ve been here for me through the tears, through the laughs, and through all the craziness of leadership consultant life.


To the collegians: Thank you for being you. You are all such smart, beautiful, amazing and accomplished women, and I couldn’t have asked for a better group to begin my leadership consultant journey with. Thank you for the countless hours in the IMU by the Pizza Hut, your adorable emails, all the pictures, the laughs and the reassurance that I’m making the same impact on your lives that I was given by the consultants that worked with my chapter of Initiation. I appreciate everything you all have done this semester, and seeing how much you’ve grown in only 75 days absolutely blows my mind. I can’t wait to see where you are in a year or two. Even though I may be off somewhere else next year, know that I will always be there as your friend and your cheerleader. Thank you for an amazing experience and as always, Go Hoosiers *insert me attempting (and failing) to do the IU arm thing*!


To Bri: Thank you for being my best friend through this journey. You truly have become the big sister I’ve never had, and I’m so proud to call you my sister. Thank you for putting up with my constant crying, love of gluten, and horrible dance moves; you’ve really made this semester amazing, and I wouldn’t have wanted to spend it with anyone else. I really don’t know what I’m going to do without you next year, but I promise to visit you and your super cool job so we can eat way too much queso and reminisce about the semester we watched 154 episodes of Gilmore Girls and obsessed about corgis. Here’s to being the dynamic duo, love always BLMEC.


To our supervisors: Thank you for making this all possible! You all are rock stars and I don’t know how we would function without you. You all have helped us through the good, the bad and the glittered, and I’m so thankful to have two amazing women leading us through this experience. You really are inspirations to us all, and I can’t wait to continue my experience next year with you.988537_10204057784021146_4584620739444997532_n

To my team: Thank you so much for an amazing year. You all have made me laugh, made me cry, and have become some of my favorite humans. From our favorite songs, to all of the inside jokes, the trips to get ice cream, and making sure we keep Lindy Luchowski, Gamma Zeta, away from nuts, you all have made this year one for the books. I am so proud that we were able to complete SEVEN colonizations, and were able to reach and make an impact on so many chapters across the country. I’m so proud of all of the long hours you all have put in for this organization, and I feel so honored to have worked on a team with you all. While I am lucky enough to see so many of you as returners next year, to those who are moving on from the LC journey, I can’t wait to see where your lives take you and all the things you all accomplish outside of the violet bubble. Again, thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone on the team; you all have made this journey so special. Love you all.


I hope everyone has an amazing summer and I’ll see you all next year! Sending you all love through the tears,


One Incredible Journey

Brianna McKay, Kappa Eta, Texas Christian University
Brianna McKay, Kappa Eta, Texas Christian University

It is hard to believe as I am writing this my time as a leadership consultant is coming to an end. Over the past 2 years I have gone to over 20 Sigma Kappa chapters, lived in two different states and met countless sisters. In honor of the 20 wonderful chapters I had the opportunity to work with, I am going to countdown from 20 in an attempt to explain what this experience has meant to me. (Don’t worry I don’t have something for every number but I will make it to 1!)

  • 20: The number of campuses I have visited as a leadership consultant. Each campus has been different but connected by this wonderful organization. I have been to campuses in California, Oregon, Alabama and Massachusetts. At every campus the women I met with taught me something new. They showed me what it means to be a Sigma Kappa all over this country. I am thankful to every campus and every Sigma Kappa I came in contact with. You all welcomed me with open arms and took me in as your sister.
  • 17: The number of women on the LC team. These women are incredible. I would not have made it through this journey without each and every one of you. You all inspire me to be a better human every day, and this year would not have been the same without you.
  • 14: The number of states I have been to. As a reference this does not include the number of states I visited on an airplane, just the states where I visited a chapter. This job had taught me about the beauty of the world we live in. Going to 14 different states I was able to see so many different areas of the USA. We live in a beautiful country and I cannot wait to continue to explore it.
  • 12: The number of women on the 2014-2015 LC team. This journey would not be the same without you all. You helped me navigate what it means to be a leadership consultant. Thank you for being there for me when things were tough and cheering me on through successes. I couldn’t have asked for better women to spend my first year with!
  • 8: The number of training’s completed. As an LC we have two training’s over the summer, one mid-year and one at the end of April. These training’s would not be possible without our two amazing supervisors. The two of you train and lead us to places we never thought we would go. You both have helped to shape my life and I cannot thank you enough for all that you do.
  • 5: The number of years I have been in Sigma Kappa. Wow. It is hard to imagine a time when Sigma Kappa was not a part of my life. This organization has made me a better person, it has given me my best friends and it has changed my life. This organization will never cease to be a part of me, it truly is for a lifetime.
  • 3: The number of different experiences I have had as a LC. Last year, I worked with one of our new chapters, Lambda Alpha, in Mobile, AL. Last semester, I traveled around the country working with our established chapters. This semester, I worked with our colony at Indiana University. All three of these experiences have taught me how vast Sigma Kappa is and how our four values truly bind us together.
  • 2: The number of years I have been a LC. It has been two crazy but absolutely amazing years.
  • 1: incredible journey.

Thank you to every volunteer, chapter officer and chapter member that have been a part of this journey. Every single one of you made this experience worth it, and for that I am eternally grateful.

Last thank you to my teams for being my support, my supervisors for being my motivators and my family/friends for being my strength.



Bienvenidos a Miami

Jessica Cunningham, Epsilon Tau, California State University, Fullerton
Jessica Cunningham, Epsilon Tau, California State University, Fullerton

I was finally able to travel to one of the cities I have wanted to visit for a very long time, Miami! We’ve seen the movies and television shows of the crystal blue water, fast boats, yachts and warm weather. Let me tell you, my expectations were pretty high stepping off the plane and I was not disappointed.

Being in Miami reminded me of a lot of being home in California. I think it helped that I explored the city with my big sister, Malaina. It was hard not to make constant comparisons between the two locations that are miles and miles apart. Even though I must say Miami traffic and crazy driving beats California by a long shot!

The Food- There are tons of taquerias in California where you can find the best Mexican food. Whatever you want they’ll have it, tacos, burritos and one of my personal favorites, sopes. In Miami, I discovered my love for Cuban food. Malaina and I had many meals consisting of maduros, tostones and the classic Cuban breakfast. I can’t forget the coffee either! Colados and cortaditios have raised the bar on my coffee expectations.

The Language and Culture- I wish I had continued my education in Spanish because it is a first language for many people who live in Miami and California. For that reason, I started learning Spanish in 7th grade but unfortunately stopped after my first semester in college. It would have been so beneficial during my recent trip but I got to break it back out and practice. I also quickly caught on to the Latin greeting in Miami, of cheek to cheek kissing.

The Art- I fell in love with the art district in Miami. There are walls and walls of art on the buildings and streets of Wynwood. I didn’t get to see it all in Miami but when I go back it’s #1 on my list! In California, attending Coachella or going to The Broad Art museum you also get a chance to see lots of unique pieces.


The Shopping and Fashion- We all know I am pretty much a shopaholic and if you don’t SURPRISE. All the malls, shops and stores in Miami had so many items I wanted to take home. They were so big I think I almost got lost in the maze of clothing. Malaina and I went on a shopping spree! In California, there are at least 4 malls and 3 large shopping plazas within a 15 mile radius of my home. They may not be as large as Miami however they are definitely abundant.

The Beach- Being from California you would think that I would prefer to be at the beaches there. This is partially true. In California, I love going to the beach for the hiking trails near the water and the many activities on or near the piers. In Miami, the water is so warm and vibrantly blue unlike California. The sand is also so white and doesn’t have as many rocks as they do back home. This may not be a big deal to some but it makes a big difference. On the sands of Huntington Beach, there are plenty of fire pits for bon fires when night falls however in Miami there are plenty chairs and umbrellas to relax under the sun without baking.


You are probably thinking “Jess which place do you love more?” I think it’s pretty clear….

beautiful world

Time to Jet,



SKLC is…

Kate Wright, Zeta Phi, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Kate Wright, Zeta Phi, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Hello friends,

When I was a collegian I was obsessed with one of our preference speeches, Sigma Kappa is. I loved the story it told about all the things Sigma Kappa can mean in a young woman’s life; it is the perfect representation of what sisterhood looks like in the day to day. Life as a LC is making our sisterhood your entire life and so what I would like to leave you with in my last post is what being a Leadership Consultant for Sigma Kappa is…


  • SKLC is taking so many personality tests, doing so many team builders, eating Blaze pizza and Brics ice cream as you spend a few summer weeks in the basement of NHQ making lifelong friends.
  • SKLC is stressing for days about packing two suitcases you will live out of for the next 4 months.
  • SKLC is saying “Hey there. Have you heard about Sigma Kappa?” thousands of times. No really, thousands. It’s hundreds of coffee dates, and many late nights to create the seven amazing new chapters we have. It’s looking back on all of that and feeling so incredibly blessed to have had the opportunity to change women’s lives by introducing them to Sigma Kappa.
  • SKLC is meeting collegians that make you think “Thank god I am a Sigma Kappa because I have the privilege of being this woman’s sister”.
  • SKLC is 23 states (and a territory) in less than a year.
  • SKLC is moving to a new place and living alone for the first time in your life.
  • SKLC is meeting and spending time with alumnae who show you the kind of woman you want to be when you grow up.
  • SKLC is watching women who inspire, challenge and amaze you learn our traditions and our secrets. It’s crying when they are installed as a chapter. It’s watching them grow in our sisterhood and knowing that though what they’ve already accomplished is incredible, there is so much left in store.
  • SKLC is watching women you love go through some really tough things, and being in awe of their grace as they do.
  • SKLC is so many face time calls. It is your very best friends. It is squad goals.
  • SKLC is sobbing as you write this post, because you realize that this journey is soon coming to an end.
  • SKLC is the most challenging, most rewarding, most amazing year of your life.

Thank you for coming along on this journey with me. Thank you for reading my posts. Thank you for an incredible year.

— Kate

A Recipe for Resilience

Lindy Luchowski, Gamma Zeta, Northern Illinois University
Lindy Luchowski, Gamma Zeta, Northern Illinois University

With the end of the semester just out of reach for most of us, we all know how hard it can be to power through strong when you’re just feeling burnt out. The idea of “giving up” isn’t anyone’s ideal situation, but after we have been beaten and worn down from a long semester of hard work, it actually starts to not sound that bad. The most common phrases I hear from people around this time include, “I’m done.” “I don’t even care anymore.” “I can’t do this anymore.” “I’m not even enjoying what I’m doing anymore.” So I started looking into the idea of resiliency. Resiliency is a skill that takes years and years to perfect and it is often forgotten, but in my opinion, it is 100% the most important skill we can have. For those of you who don’t know what resiliency is exactly, my explanation is it is your ability to bounce back strong from difficult situations. It is your ability to pick yourself back up after you’ve been hurt, discouraged or knocked down and keep going.


It’s no secret that life is tough for everyone in its own ways. Have you ever heard that expression, “Life is tough, get a helmet?” Well resiliency is like your own personal built in helmet to protect your head, heart and spirit from the times that life full-on superman tackles you to the ground. You would never go play tackle football without a helmet on, and the same goes for trying to get through life without resiliency.


I thought about the most resilient people in my life and what they all have in common. It wasn’t much, some were old men, and some were young college women. Some came from very well off and wealthy families and others came from next to nothing. Some were outstanding shining stars in life that everyone admires and others were people who have only a very small circle of close friends. However, after thinking long and hard, I came up with 10 things that all of the resilient people do to be successful in their life.


  1. They begin with the end in mind. These people set goals for themselves. Even if they don’t know HOW they are going to get there quite yet, they set a finish line for themselves and don’t stop until they get there. They are “big picture” thinkers. If something happens, they look at the situation with the question “How much does this actually affect my ability to get to the finish line?” Often times, in the big picture setting, many situations seem like a big deal in the moment but if you step back and look at the grand scheme of things, they are only tiny speed bumps in the road.
  2. They stand up for themselves. These people know the importance of maturely expressing to others when they feel they are being mistreated. They have self-worth and know that they are important enough and deserve to be treated with respect. In turn, these people treat others with the same respect they wish to be given. They don’t let people push them around or lower their self-esteem. They see everyone as equals and deserving of happiness and compassion, including themselves.
  3. They know how to recharge. Whether they recharge alone or with other people, they know what they need to do to avoid hitting that “low battery” feeling on a daily basis. They do not wait for all of the pressures in their lives to build up and break them. They recharge in small amounts every day to elongate their battery life. They know how important taking time to make yourself feel good is and how it pays off in the long run.
  4. They are grateful. Instead of seeing what they are missing or what else they want in life that they don’t have, they only see how incredibly lucky they are in the present time. They make themselves feel rich and fulfilled every single day by focusing on all the things that ARE going right in their life. They don’t think about what they need to get to be happy like many people do. Many people think “If I could just make more money I would be happy,” “If i just had that cute dress I would be happy,” “If I had a relationship like that other person has, then I would be happy.” Instead, they make themselves feel rich by what is already in their lives. These people count their blessings and are happy with whatever number that is without comparing it to anyone else’s blessings.
  5. They accept that the world isn’t fair and don’t expect it to be. These people don’t keep score. Life isn’t about who has the most points on the scoreboard, it’s about the experiences you had that got you there. They don’t expect anything out of life and don’t feel like the world owes them anything. They work hard for what they attract into their lives.
  6. They focus on what they can control. There are A LOT of things in life to worry about. However, these people can look at a worry they have and immediately decide if it is something they can change or not. If this factor is uncontrollable, they don’t waste any of their energy worrying about it and instead channel their energy to putting a plan of action together for what they can control.
  7. They are their own number one fan. They are their own cheerleader. They don’t expect anyone else to hold them up, they can do it on their own. They constantly praise themselves and give themselves pats on the back when they feel they have earned it. So often people are waiting for someone else to tell them, “you did a great job,” or “you’re a rock star” and when they don’t hear those words of affirmation, they feel depressed or like they are not doing a good job. People with resiliency say “I’m not going to wait for someone to tell me I did a good job, I’m going to tell myself.” However, this does not mean they don’t know when they have room and opportunity for growth, they are just happy and confident in themselves. They do not care what other people think of them as long as they are content with the person they are. You’re never going to make everyone happy so you might as well just make yourself happy.
  8. They don’t HAVE emotions, they CHOOSE emotions. Instead of saying, “I feel frustrated today,” or “I’m so angry today” they say “I am choosing to be frustrated over this situation” or “I am choosing to be angry about this.” They are in control of their emotions, their emotions don’t control them. This doesn’t mean they don’t let themselves have a good, long cry every once in a while though! They just think about why they are feeling a certain way and what they can do to feel the way they want to be feeling instead.
  9. They are 50 shades of grey thinkers. No, not related to the book series. These people refuse to think in just black and white. They don’t see only two solutions to every problem. They get creative when problem solving and utilize communication and compromise to find the best way out of a situation. They think outside of the box and are not afraid to try something new.
  10. They know “The Secret” and how to use it. Now this may frustrate you, but I am not going to just tell you what the secret is. It’s WAY too good to just tell you. You have to look for it and find your own understanding of it. If you have no idea what this “secret” is, go do some research. On Netflix. #firstworldprobs. Go to Netflix, type in “the secret” and watch that documentary. There is also a book if you prefer to read. This secret is not something that can just be told but once you understand it, it will change your life. I was first introduced to “the secret” when I was in 7th grade and over the years have definitely come to have my own understanding of it. For me, the secret is the power of positive thinking. Find your own secret.

Building resilience takes time, effort and patience. My favorite part about resiliency though is that it looks different for everyone. You can’t just give someone a magic formula that if they follow these steps they will be resilient. It’s a trial and error process that you don’t have to go at alone. Ask other people how they deal with problems and recharge. Ask other people for help and advice. Once you find your recipe for resilience, nothing can stop you from living the life YOU choose for yourself.