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Greek life: Empowering the students of USF

Photo: Harlie Mast, Photography Editor

Are you curious to know what type of Greek life is offered here at the University of Saint Francis (USF)? Whether it’s a fraternity or sorority, both engage in recruitment of members, social activities and philanthropy. These Greek organizations have a strong sense of community which gives them a strong Alumni network that provides valuable connections and opportunities after graduation.

The university offers two different organizations who are excited to meet new recruits.

Alpha Psi Lambda is the first and largest co-ed Latino fraternity. USF established the fraternity back in 2017 but was founded at The Ohio State University on Feb. 11, 1985.

“Alpha Psi Lambda stands as one family,” Alpha Psi Lambda Chapter President Anahi Rodriguez said. “United our strength lies in our ability to focus on our culture while appreciating the diversity of others."

While the fraternity is Latino founded, everyone is welcome. They throw a multitude of different events throughout the year like paint night, game night and movie night.

Alpha Psi does stress the importance of taking your education seriously. There’s a requirement of at least a 2.7 GPA.

“Professionally it helped me get more public speaking skills,” Chapter Co-President Samantha Gonzalez said. “[Alpha Psi Lambda] made me feel more confident in myself.”

But that isn’t all that Alpha Psi Lambda does. They support each other as a family and rely on one another.

Chapter member August Corria talked about her time in the organization.

“It showed me that other people are also scared and nervous,” Corria said. “We are all trying to figure it out altogether. I feel a sense of community and it helped me grow.”

Alpha Phi, founded in 1872 at Syracuse University, has a rich history of sisterhood, scholarship and service. Existing as the only all female fraternity on USF Campus since 2015, the Alpha Phi Chapter continues to promote these high ideals.

Greek life, According to Chapter President of Alpha Phi Peyton Garrelts, is about family.

“Alpha Phi has given me a second family, you always have someone you can count on and know is in your corner,” Garrelts said. “We are always holding sisterhoods, study groups, and bonding experiences. ”

For alpha phi members, sisterhood is more than a word, it's a connection that will last a lifetime.

Another member, Vanessa Mclean holds her experience in high regard.

“It is an amazing experience that will help you create fond memories, friendships, and there are even leadership opportunities,” Mclean said. “Jump in and embrace it! I was nervous at first but I would have missed out on so much if I didn’t take that first step.”

Service is at the core of Alpha Phi Values. Through fundraisers and events Alpha Phi’s philanthropy supports Women’s Heart Health.

“I think what separates us is our mission to promote sisterhood and our philanthropy for women's heart health,” Garrelts said. “We hold and participate in several fundraising and volunteer events throughout the year; it’s something we take a lot of pride in”

If you’re interested in joining Alpa Phi, you can visit their Instagram @stfrancisAlphaPhi or check around campus for a recruitment flier.

If you are interested in joining Alpha Psi Lambda, go to their Instagram: @usf_apsi so you can get more information about their meeting and application links.

Disclaimer: Anahi Rodriguez is a staff writer for the USF Encounter, and was not involved in the reporting, writing or editing of this piece. Harlie Mast is a member of Alpha Phi.

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