Campus Celebrity: Panhellenic Council President, Katie Guarino

Name: Katie Guarino

Year: Junior – Class of 2017

Hometown: Wakefield, MA

Major: Health Science (Pre-Nursing)

Extracurricular Activities: Panhellenic Council, Alpha Delta Pi Sorority, Student Government, Trumbull Emergency Services, Health Science Club and American Medical Association.

 

Katie (far right) with her sorority sisters at the kickoff brunch!

 

Can you tell us a little about Confidence With Heart? More specifically, what you are doing around the halls of Sacred Heart?

Confidence With Heart is a week-long campaign promoting confidence and empowerment in women on our college campus and in our community. The idea is to inspire one another to be our best selves and learn that there is no such thing as being perfect, but there is such thing as being individually and uniquely perfect! Throughout the week, we held different events every single day to promote and inspire women’s self-confidence. On Monday, we handed out of 1,000 handmade compliments made by the sorority women and Her Campus. On Tuesday, we demonstrated our pledge banner made by Danielle Berube, a sister of Theta Phi Alpha, and asked women to write what they were specifically confident about in themselves. We even got the guys involved by asking them how they can be supportive of women’s confidence. We followed that event with attending Project STRONG, an after-school program for girls in Bridgeport. We talked to them about how they can be confident and positive in their school and in their community. Wednesday we brought in a confidence coach, Coach Keisha, who inspired us to be our best selves no matter the circumstances. She was truly a motivating woman who connected with so many of our students. Following the speaker, we supported a “Cycle with Confidence” event promoting women’s bodies and a healthy lifestyle at the Westport SoulCycle (hosted by Trish Flaherty, a sister of Alpha Delta Pi). On Thursday we had an event, “Mirror, Mirror, on the wall who is the most confident of them all?” in which we encouraged women to decorate mirrors to symbolize their own beauty and perfection. On Friday, we went out into the community to talk to fifth through eighth grade girls at Park City Magnet School about how they can be confident and always pursue and follow their dreams. Our mission throughout this entire campaign has been to make this confidence issue a known matter, as well as to encourage and inspire all women to be their best self because, in reality, everyone else is overrated.

 

Handing out compliments to other SHU students!

 

How did you come up for the idea of this week?

Kappa Delta Nationals reached out to Sacred Heart University back in March of 2015 with information regarding the Confidence U grant. Laura Arena, Director of Greek Life, forwarded the message on to me. Immediately, I knew this was something I felt so passionate about, so I brought it to the Panhellenic Executive Board who also got on board with me. From there, we began writing our proposal and coming up with ideas about how we can bring this campaign to our campus. In August of 2015, Sacred Heart University won the grant along with nine other schools in the entire country. The Panhellenic Council has done such an amazing job putting this campaign together, and I really could not have done it without all of their help. The Panhellenic women are true inspirations-- not only to the campus but also to myself. So many organizations came together this week to promote confidence in their own ways and within their organizations. Spreading this message and being a role model for women (who are constantly scrutinized in today’s society) has been such an amazing opportunity.

 

Katie and Danielle Berube posing with motivational speaker, Coach Keisha.

 

How have you been spreading this movement throughout the Bridgeport community?

Confidence with Heart has been spread throughout the Bridgeport community to promote confidence in younger girls. Tori Lettiero, sister of Theta Phi Alpha, and I attended Project STRONG through Volunteer Services to educate fifth grade girls about the importance of self-confidence. During this talk, we made girls realize that perfection is not real and, instead, it is their unique characteristics that make them perfect in their own different ways. We told the girls to always shoot for the moon and settle for nothing less. Friday afternoon, we went to Park Magnet Middle School. We educated fifth grade through eighth grade girls about how they can be confident in themselves, promote positivity among their peers and never let anyone tear them down or tell them that they cannot do something. We incorporated activities and other fun games to show the girls that being confident is fun and always something they should be proud of! Elizabeth McLean, sister of Kappa Delta and Vice President of Scholarship, helped run and organize the entire day for the younger girls. It is really important to connect with our community regarding this issue because it is not only a college concern but also a national problem amongst all women, young and old.

 

Katie speaking to the Project STRONG girls with Tori Lettiero.

 

What do you think confidence is?

Confidence, to me, is being internally and externally positive and true to yourself. Confidence is being yourself and not letting anyone or anything change who you truly are. It is always being proud that you are unique and different than others. Confidence should be something you promote and show the world every single day in various different ways. We are all human-- we make mistakes and fall down.  However, confidence is giving yourself the ability to laugh it off, take it as a life lesson, press restart, get back up and try again. It isn’t how you fall, but rather how you get back up that shows your true confident self.

 

Check out the Panhellenic Council’s Confidence with Heart video! It was shared at University of Dayton, University of New Hampshire, University of South Carolina, as well as all over Massachusetts and New York!

 

 

Thank you so much, Katie! We’re so happy to have you as our Campus Celebrity this week. You have definitely earned it!