woman with curly brown hair and white dress

The Meaning of Sorority Life To Delta Zeta's VP of New Member Education: Kiana Stino

Kiana Stino, a senior from Lake Mary, Florida, is the Vice President of New Member Education in the Alpha Sigma chapter of the Delta Zeta sorority. This woman in leadership is an aspiring elementary school teacher, which is fitting to her current position here at FSU. Kiana is majoring in Family and Child Sciences with a minor in Education. Her passions include working with kids, singing and, formerly, competitive dance. Her Campus conducted an interview with Kiana to discuss the connection and empowerment women share in sorority life.

Her Campus (HC): Why did you choose Delta Zeta and what do the women in DZ mean to you? 

Kiana Stino (KS): I chose Delta Zeta because it was the place that made me feel at home. Going through recruitment can be very difficult for many people, and I was one of them. I had many self-esteem issues stemming from me not loving the way I look, [which] made it very hard for me to go through the process. I told myself to stay true to who I am and that's exactly what I did. When I went to DZ, I felt like everything was so natural. I didn't have to try to be something I wasn't. I didn't have to worry about sitting a certain way, so I looked skinnier or holding back a laugh that may be seen as "too much." I was loved for being just the way I am, and I didn't feel judged because I didn't have the "perfect body" or because I was of a different ethnicity than others. In addition, I valued conversations that weren't like the rest. If you have gone through formal recruitment, you notice very quickly that you tend to have the same conversation in many places. I liked how the first conversation I had at DZ wasn't basic. She told me her story with Delta Zeta and how she knew she belonged here, and that's something I still remember to this day.

The women in DZ mean everything to me. You hear this cliche that you meet your future bridesmaids in your sorority but honestly, that's a reality. The friendships I have made will truly last me a lifetime. These aren't just my sisters but my family. Being away from home can be hard, and just because we are "adults" doesn't mean that we don't need to lean on each other sometimes. My sisters were there for me through it all. From the little things like needing a cute top to wear or borrowing a phone charge, to the harder things to deal with like heartbreak or the stress of classes. These women are my family and I wouldn't be the person I am today without them.

badge that reads Photo by Kiana Stino  

HC: How do you think sororities bond, shape and empower women?

KS: Sororities give women an outlet to accomplish the things that society may deem as only a "man's job." We have finally gotten to the point where people are starting to realize that women can do pretty much anything a man can do. With that, we are finally getting those opportunities. Sorority life is an organization run FULLY by women. We all pitch in and do our part to make this a well-oiled machine. We all work together to raise money for our philanthropy, which helps bond us in many ways. We also support each other in leadership roles. There comes a time where elections take place and sisters will be running for positions in the chapter. It's amazing to see how our sisters support each other in the running for these positions and give them the confidence to go for positions that sometimes may seem unimaginable.

HC: How does your role as Vice President of New Member Education relate to your future plans?

KS: My role as Vice President of New Member Education relates to my future plans as I want to become a teacher. I think this position opened my eyes to many things, including the age I want to teach. Originally, I saw myself as an elementary school teacher, and that only. After working with these amazing women, I have to say that high school has been calling my name. Although I am continuing with elementary, I would be lying if I said I'm not actively thinking about high school. I think this position helped me get a taste of teaching a different age group, which will benefit me in any teaching I do in the future. 

HC: What is your teaching strategy like during the era of COVID-19?

KS: Teaching during COVID-19 was definitely a new experience. My strategy was to figure out a way to make meetings effective, fun and engaging while also allowing members to feel as though they are bonding through the screen. To some extent, these meetings are like a class, but I don't want [them] to feel like a chore. These meetings are supposed to help members learn not only about Delta Zeta but themselves. I utilized Zoom and PowerPoint for all my meetings, and for smaller groups, I was able to do it in-person with masks. I do various activities and reflection tasks that allow members to grow together but also grow from within.

HC: As one of the first sorority women new members meet, how do you welcome and make them feel at home in Delta Zeta?

KS: I try to welcome each woman with open arms. Joining a sorority can be completely overwhelming and everyone handles that stress a little differently. I try to make everyone feel at home by letting them know that I am always here if you need me. I never want my members to be scared of me or feel as though they can't approach me with any questions or concerns. By keeping an open flow of communication, I feel I was able to help a lot of women feel at ease with the transition.

HC: What has been your favorite moment as the VP of New Member Education?

KS: My favorite part of being VPNME is getting to meet everyone. It's crazy for me to think that I have now taught about 100 women. I feel like the time has gone by so fast, yet the feelings were so personal with each member. Creating those bonds is something that will live with me forever. The retreats, bonding events and meetings are all so much fun, but nothing will ever replace being able to get to know each of my members and being there to see them get initiated on their special day.

Want to see more HCFSU? Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, Youtube and Pinterest!