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This is Why I Joined A Sorority — Here’s What It Means to Me

When I first moved to Bloomington-Normal, I was super nervous. I always had a really big, close-knit group of friends in high school and I had never been apart from them before. I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to find close connections like I had before. When I got here, I struggled a bit to find people who were similar to me. I was from a really small town down south while all the other people I talked to were from the suburbs of Chicago. They all had more in common with each other, which made me frequently left out in conversations considering that I had no idea what was going on. There were also only three other people from my high school that went to Illinois State, we all had very different personalities and never really talked much in the past. My roommate and I also weren’t super close, she was more on the quiet side.

However, I met her sister and that was when things started to change for me. She was super perky, nice, and brought up her sorority sisters in almost every conversation we had. Her energy and personality could light up a room. She told us that we should go through the sorority recruitment process together. It would get us more involved on campus and we would get closer as roommates. I had never really looked into Greek life before; all I knew were the negative stereotypes of being super ditzy and partying all the time. These stereotypes turned out to be 100% wrong. The recruitment process was really overwhelming and exhausting considering I went into it completely clueless about what sororities even were. But at the end of the day, I would choose to do it over and over again. It turned out to be one of my favorite college memories, I still have friends to this day that I met throughout that long week. We would all walk back to Hewett/Manchester hall and get Subway at midnight and tell stories of all the crazy stuff that happened to us throughout the day, very good vibes.

During recruitment, I loved every house that I visited. The girls were all really nice and I could tell each chapter was like a family by the way I saw them talk to each other. I was shocked to find out that each sorority had core values and a main philanthropy that they helped raise money for. I really just thought sororities were girls who wanted a lot of friends and only wanted to have fun. The fact that they do this WHILE raising money through philanthropy events really made me excited and more motivated to find my future sorority sisters than I was before. There was always one chapter that stood out to me the most, and that was Sigma Sigma Sigma. One of their partner philanthropies is March of Dimes. They raise money for premature babies and babies with birth defects. They also have educational programs for mothers with lower incomes and very little education. This hit home for me because I want to work with newborns for my career. I thought this would be a great way to get more involved in what I’m passionate about. Then the five core values for my sorority are faith, hope, love, wisdom, and power. I really resonated with all of these because those are all of the things that I find most important in life. The girl who explained all of these things to me actually ended up being my big in my sorority. Your big is the person who leads you around when you’re a newer member and is kind of like your go-to person. Without her, I might’ve never joined Tri Sigma.

Getting involved in Greek life impacted my life in ways that I would have never expected. It’s cheesy, but I really have found my future bridesmaids and life-long best friends through this organization. My sorority also helped me find my voice and become a leader. I’ve had two leadership positions already just for this organization. Five years ago if you would’ve told me that I would be a leader, I wouldn’t have believed it. I probably would’ve laughed. I’ve also joined two other RSO’s because I felt more comfortable on campus and with myself and my abilities. I’ve really become a stronger and more empowered woman because of Greek life. All of the sororities are there to support each other along with the girls in your chapter. I couldn’t imagine college without it. It’s an amazing way to meet people that you’ll fit in with and be able to be comfortable in your own skin. College is a hard adjustment for a lot of people but getting involved in Greek life really pushed me out of my comfort zone in the best way possible. It shaped me to be the person who I am today and I hope it continues to do the same for everyone else who’s new to college as well.

Bella Sibenaller

Illinois State '23

Hi, my name is Bella and I'm a junior here at Illinois State. I'm a psychology major, but I'm also going into nursing. At ISU, I am also apart of the National Society for Leadership and Success and currently serve as the social chair. My hometown is Charleston, Illinois. It's a super small town south of ISU. In my free time, I enjoy hanging out with friends and Facetiming my eight year old sister. If you have any questions about Her Campus or any of the other organizations I'm involved in, please reach out! My Instagram is @bellajsib.
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