Friday, December 19, 2014

Feature Friday Staff Profile: Abby Margulis, Marketing and Communications Intern

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office.  

Abby Margulis is the marketing and communications intern. She manages the advocacy efforts of initiative, including writing newsletters, updating the website and posting to social media.  

About Abby: Abby is from St. Louis and a senior at DePauw University in Greencastle, Ind. She is the oldest of four siblings – two brothers, Will, 19, and Matthew, 16, and one sister, Ellie, 14. She also has a dog, a miniature dachshund, Elsie. 

She is majoring in English writing and minoring in media communications. After graduation she wants to work in the field of journalism/communication or in fraternity and sorority life. On campus she is the DePauw University Panhellenic Association director of communications and the Delta Gamma chapter director of electronic communications. She is also involved with the campus newspaper, The DePauw, writing for sports and taking pictures this fall after serving as editor-in-chief last semester.  

Fun Fact: I am a shoe fanatic, especially boots.

Q & A: 

  1. What do you most enjoy about working at NPC? I never feel like my job is work. Each day I get excited to drive into the office to work with the amazing staff, learn new skills and be creative.
  2.  What is one of your favorite quotes? “Mountains know the secrets we need to learn. That it might take time, it might be hard, but if you just hold on long enough, you will find the strength to rise up.” – Tyler Knott Gregson

  3. When you have 30 minutes of free time, how do you choose to spend it? If I have 30 minutes to myself I will be found running outside. At DePauw one of my favorite places on campus is our nature park with all of its woodland trails. I am always running a new route, and it’s especially beautiful during the fall. If the weather is not ideal, I’ll normally find myself being productive and getting ahead in my work.
  4. What have you gained most from being in a sorority? Being a part of Delta Gamma has not only given me amazing friends that I know I will keep for a lifetime, but it has also pushed me to extend my leadership skills outside my comfort zone and try new things. If it was not for two of my sisters, specifically, I would not be the DePauw University Panhellenic Association director of communications nor would I have learned about the NPC marketing and communications internship. By holding these two positions, in addition to one within my chapter, it has not only broadened my journalism and communication skills, but it has given me a greater understanding and love for sorority life. By becoming part of the fraternal community many doors have opened for me that I never knew were there.
  5. What is something you do every day? I am extremely organized and always create a “to-do list” with exactly what I need to get completed that day. It can include anything from my workout, to meetings, to homework that I need to do. I love the feeling of being able to cross something off after I’ve completed it.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Feature Friday Staff Profile: Alexa Arndt, Educational Support Intern

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office.  

Alexa Arndt is the fall 2014 educational support intern. She assists Jenny Greyerbiehl, training and curriculum design coordinator, with the creation of learning objectives and assessment tests for NPC educational programs. She also helps develop and design various presentations and comes up with new ways to deliver past presentations.  

About Alexa: Alexa is from Canfield, Ohio, and graduated from The Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree in both international studies and public affairs with leadership studies and political science minors. She currently attends graduate school at Indiana University, working on obtaining her master’s in higher education and student affairs. Originally she chose her undergraduate degree with hopes that she was going to join the Foreign Service and travel the world like Carrie Mathison from the television show “Homeland.” Now she looks forward to working in the fraternity and sorority life field.  

Fun Fact: A movie preview can bring me to tears.  

Q & A:
  1. What do you most enjoy about working at NPC? I love working on initiatives that I know will influence the entire Panhellenic community!
  2. What is one of your favorite quotes? “Live, travel, adventure, bless and don’t be sorry.” – Jack Kerouac
  3. What are you most passionate about? Adventure.
  4. What is your favorite book? “The Great Gatsby.”
  5. What are your top five favorite things to do outside of work? Go to the movies, go on adventures, play board games with my family, craft and spend time with people I love.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Feature Friday Staff Profile: Marci Kolb, Business Operations Coordinator

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office. 

Marci Kolb is the Business Operations Coordinator. She oversees the database and website maintenance, executes the sponsor and exhibitor programs and handles daily office operations. 

About Marci: Marci grew up in Peoria, Illinois before attending college in Indianapolis and beginning her career at NPC. A 2014 graduate of Butler University, she majored in strategic communications with a minor in sociology. She has always been interested in nonprofit work and chose this degree to gain valuable skills for that career path. As a freshman, she went through recruitment and joined Pi Beta Phi. She spent time throughout college interning with Team in Training through the Indiana Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Fun fact: My real name is Mercedes, after the car, because it has always been my dad's favorite. 

Q & A:
1. What do you most enjoy about working at NPC? NPC is made up of a small staff, so I know all my coworkers and we are a tight-knit group. I know that I can ask anyone a question and they are always willing to help me.

2. What is one of your favorite quotes? "Never regret. If it's good, it's wonderful. If it's bad, it's experience." - Victoria Holt

3. What is a personal goal that you are working toward achieving? I am currently training for my first half marathon. I have never really been a runner, but I decided it was time to challenge myself. I will be running the Indianapolis Monumental Marathon with Team in Training in November. The cool part about running with Team in Training is that I also raise money to help find a cure for cancer. Not only am I running 13.1 miles, but I am also raising $1,000 for cancer research.

4. Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate. 

5. Where is a favorite place you have been and why? While I always love family vacations at the lake, last year I went to England for the first time and fell in love. I spent two weeks traveling around the country, visiting Stratford-upon-Avon and Bath in addition to staying a few nights in London. I traveled with a class at Butler, which included five of my sorority sisters. While I was there I met Daniel Radcliffe and got his autograph. I am so ready to go back and explore more!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Feature Friday Staff Profile: Caitlin Moulton, Panhellenic Support Coordinator

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office. 

Caitlin Moulton is the Panhellenic support coordinator. She provides direct support to Alumnae and College Panhellenics through communications and resources, and indirect support by making sure NPC volunteers have the materials they need to guide the Panhellenics they advise. Caitlin also coordinates NPC’s "Something of Value" program and consulting team visits, among other duties.

About Caitlin: Caitlin, the daughter of a military man, grew up moving around the U.S. She has lived in eight states: Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Virginia and Wyoming. She was born in Alabama and returned to attend Auburn University. During high school she lived in Illinois, where her family still resides, and she considers Alabama and the Midwest to be where her roots lie. Her older brother, Aaron, is currently working on his doctorate at the University of Arkansas, focusing on political exiles in Latin America. 

At Auburn Caitlin studied Spanish-international trade because she enjoyed Spanish throughout high school and wanted to learn more about business and economics. She joined Zeta Tau Alpha her freshman year and served as a leadership consultant for the organization for a year and a half after college. Today she volunteers for Zeta Tau Alpha, because her passion for sorority life extends beyond her job. 

Fun fact: I have the same birthday as my mom, which I think is an easy explanation as to why we are so much alike and why she is definitely my best friend. She is an Alpha Xi Delta and also attended Auburn. 


1. What do you most enjoy about working at NPC? I love working in an environment for women, about women and by women. Being an advocate for sorority life is important to me because it has shaped me as a person and as a woman. I believe in what I'm doing each day. I love my co-workers, too! We are a great team and understand each other and work together well. 

2. If you could go back in time, what year/event would you travel back to and why?
I would be fascinated to live in the early 20th century and be part of the women's suffrage movement. I'm inspired to know that sorority women had a major role in those changes. 

3. Who do you admire as a leader? I am saddened to say that one of the leaders I admire most passed away recently. Deb Ensor, former executive director of Zeta Tau Alpha, was one of the most driven and amazing women I've ever met. She truly helped shape our Fraternity into the organization it is now. She was known for inspiring others with her words of wisdom, such as "Never underestimate the power of being a woman, never underestimate the power of being a Zeta and never be surprised when greatness is expected of you." 

4. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? I don't know if I had any specific career aspirations, but I’m told I informed my parents that I would own a purple convertible and drive around fast with the top down.

5. How would your friends or family describe you?
Positive. I try to maintain the best outlook I can because I believe strongly that the world is what you make of it. I keep a smile going as much as possible, and I do my best to see the best in people and situations.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Feature Friday Staff Profile: Emily Kile, Office Administrator

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office. 

Today is Emily Kile’s last day working for NPC before she heads to law school at the Indiana Maurer School of Law in Bloomington this fall. Emily started as the marketing and communications intern at NPC in the fall of her junior year at Butler University. As marketing and communications intern, she worked extensively with marketing and managing initiative and with various other NPC communications projects. In May she graduated and began work as the office administrator for the summer. Emily is also the Fraternal Government Relations Coalition intern. As the FGRC intern, Emily has been working on developing a social-media strategy for the FGRC and has prepared various toolkit items for fraternities and sororities to use to promote the work of the coalition.

About Emily:
I am from Greenfield, Indiana, but I consider Indianapolis my home. I am the oldest of four siblings. My younger brother Erik will be a junior at Wabash College this fall, my younger sister, Erin, is a senior in high school and my youngest brother, Ethan, is a freshman in high school. I also have two dogs—a golden retriever named Emma and a mixed breed named Ellie—and a cat named Wilson.

At Butler University I majored in English literature and minored in strategic communications. I was a student worker in the Office of Admission for four years and loved it. Among other responsibilities, I gave tours to prospective students. I joined Kappa Kappa Gamma as a freshman and served on various committees throughout my four years as an active member. I also served as vice president of standards for a one-year term.

I’ll be in law school for the next three years. I’m not entirely sure what area of law I want to practice, but I’m looking forward to starting that next adventure and figuring it all out. I am hoping to move back to Indianapolis when I graduate and practice law somewhere in the city.

Fun facts: I had braces for seven years, and I have never broken a bone.


1. What do you most enjoy about working at NPC?

The people who work here are so inspiring. We all work here because we love what we do and we believe in the sorority experience. It is so powerful to be surrounded by people who share your values and who understand where you’re coming from. Even though we all have different sorority affiliations, our experiences and attitudes are pretty similar. I learn something new every day.

2. Describe what your perfect day would be like?

My perfect day would start with a homemade breakfast on my porch while reading the news or catching up on whatever book I’m reading. I love to cook for my family and friends, so the day would feature a huge barbecue at my parents’ house, including hanging out by their pool and ending with cooking s’mores in their outdoor fire pit. I also love driving my convertible, so my perfect day would have to include a drive somewhere with the top down in weather that isn’t too hot or too cold.

3. What is one of your favorite quotes?
“There are nine innings in a baseball game.”

It sounds silly and obvious, but this one comes from my dad. He’s a huge baseball fan, and his mantra is that no matter what the score is in the 6th or 7th or 8th inning, it doesn’t matter because nothing is over until it is really over. It’s my motivation to keep trying when things get difficult. Until the 9th inning is completed, you never know what can happen.

4. What is your favorite restaurant in Indianapolis and favorite dish to get there?

Napolese Pizzeria! I love the whole Patachou family line of restaurants, but Napolese is my current favorite. I usually try a different pizza every time I go, but Elliot’s Pie is one of my favorites.

5. Favorite place to vacation? 

My family loves Disney World! We go there pretty often. My family also loves baseball, so I have been to almost every Major League Baseball stadium in North America.

6. What have you most gained from being in a sorority?

I feel like I am part of something much bigger than myself. I come from a very Panhellenic family and knew about sorority life growing up, but it wasn’t until I joined one myself that I really started to understand what sorority membership is all about. Working at NPC has helped me with that, too. Now, when I get together with my family and everybody starts talking about their fraternity and sorority memberships, I feel like I’m a part of that, even though we don’t all share the same affiliation. 

Sorority life has made me a better person. I have been held to a higher standard because I belong to something bigger than myself. My sorority membership has made me more aware of my potential and of my actions and their impact.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Feature Friday Staff Profile: Jenny Greyerbiehl, Training and Curriculum Design Coordinator

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and two interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office.

Jenny Greyerbiehl, training and curriculum design coordinator, assists in the creation and revision of educational programs and resources for collegiate and alumnae members. Get to know who Jenny is inside and outside of the office.

Here's the serious stuff:

I have a bachelor’s degree in organizational communication from Alma College in Michigan and a master’s in college student affairs administration from the University of Georgia. I have served as a presenter and/or small-group facilitator for programs including NPC’s “Something of Value,” the North-American Interfraternity Conference’s IMPACT and UIFI, sessions of LeaderShape, Campuspeak's Recruitment Boot Camp, the Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values Central Conference, the South Texas Panhellenic Conference and Beta Theta Pi’s North Central Keystone Regional Leadership Conference. In addition, I have volunteered in many roles with my member organization, Alpha Xi Delta, and currently serve as the national academic director.

Here's the "fun" stuff:
  • I live in Indianapolis with my Shih Tzu, Fibi.
  • I have an identical, mirror, twin named Jessica.
  • My favorite places to vacation are Saint Joseph, Michigan in the summer and Abacos, Bahamas, in the winter.
  • I love the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Lions, but my favorite sports team is the Georgia Bulldogs (particularly in football). Go Dawgs!

What do you love most about your job?
There are so many things. I love developing programming in the hope that it will positively affect those who participate. I love my co-workers, especially my supervisor, Nicki: she is supportive and encouraging and inspires me every day.

What is one of your favorite quotes?
"You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them." — -Maya Angelou

If you had to work on only one project for the next year, what would it be?
Finding a way to survive by being a beach bum!

When you have 30 minutes of free time, how do you choose to spend it?
Reading a good book.

If you could go back in time, what year/event would you travel back to and why?
I would go back to my last overseas vacation, which was to Africa on a safari. It was hands down the best vacation I've ever been on. (Just for fun, I've attached two of my favorite pictures!)

You can see what the @NPCWomen staff is up to by following #npcstaffadventures on Instagram and Twitter.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Staff Profile: Kyle Fowler, Educational Support Intern Summer 2014

The National Panhellenic Conference has five full-time staff members and two interns who work daily to advance the sorority experience. Here we will introduce each staff member and let them tell you who they are and what they do in the office. 

Kyle Fowler, educational support intern, has just completed his six weeks with NPC, so learn about him and what he’s been doing. 

What you do at NPC:
I assist Jenny Greyerbiehl, training and curriculum design coordinator. I create learning objectives and assessment tests for online webinars, develop and design presentations for various presentations NPC delivers at conferences, and come up with new ways to deliver past presentations.

About Kyle: 
I recently turned 23. I was born in San Diego, but consider Plymouth, Ohio, my hometown as I lived there from the third grade on. I graduated in May of 2013 from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, with a degree in public relations and minors in marketing and psychology. I am a member of Alpha Sigma Phi Fraternity. During my senior year and after graduation, I worked as an event planner for the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation.

In the fall, I'll be attending Kent State University, Ohio, to pursue a master’s in higher education and student personnel. I’ll also be working at the University of Mount Union in Alliance, Ohio, as a dual fraternity and sorority life and residence life graduate assistant. 

Fun fact:
I have a tattoo. It's on my shoulder, and it's the word "peace" in eight different languages that create a peace sign.

What do you most enjoy about working at NPC?
I learn several items every day I'm here, and working here never really feels like "work."

Describe what your perfect day would be like? 
My perfect day would be going downtown to the park to explore and hang out with my friends or going to the zoo. Love the zoo.

What do you expect out of the next two years?
For the next two years, I'll be in graduate school, so I expect to learn a lot about not only the profession but myself as well. I also expect to have my ways of doing things or thinking to be challenged and to grow from those experiences. In addition, I'm hoping by the end of the two years I'll have had several internships/experiences in the fraternity and sorority life world to help me learn more about some of the major issues and hopefully be working at a college or university as a fraternity/sorority advisor!

If you could pick one adjective to put on a resume to describe yourself what would it be?

What are you most passionate about?
I'm passionate about having a positive impact on the fraternal movement. I'm passionate about educating and developing students in skills they can't learn in the classroom. I'm passionate about keeping fraternities and sororities around for a very long time. I'm passionate about Harry Potter and Halloween.

You can see what the @NPCWomen staff is up to by following #npcstaffadventures on Instagram and Twitter.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Sharing the Sorority Legacy

As the premier advocacy and support organization for the sorority experience, the National Panhellenic Conference developed to provide potential new members and their parents with information about sorority life. Throughout May and June shared legacy stories, both traditional and Panhellenic. Each year thousands of women go through sorority recruitment hoping to fulfill a family legacy or to begin their own. Many women join the same organizations as their sisters, mothers and grandmothers; but many women also join different organizations and begin a Panhellenic legacy. Each legacy story focuses on the personal journey and decisions a legacy makes during the recruitment process.

Caitlin Moulton, Zeta Tau Alpha

Marci Kolb, Pi Beta Phi

Sue Kingsley Robinson, Pi Beta Phi

Sophia Markowska, Gamma Phi Beta

Audrey Kate Vasina, Kappa Alpha Theta

Emily Oswalt, Alpha Omicron Pi

Megan Kline, Kappa Kappa Gamma

Kristen L. Soltis, Alpha Chi Omega

Jackie Isaacson, Phi Mu

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Thank You Doesn’t Seem Like Enough

By Brandi Barber, Chi Omega

Thank youseems so insignificant to say to someone who believed in you when you didn’t believe in yourself. It doesn’t convey the same sentiment as “You made me, and every one of my sisters who knew you, a better person.” It’s not quite the same as “You were our steady foundation in times of uncertainty.” But I guess there are no words that could truly capture what Janet Ridgway meant to me and the rest of the Psi Mu Chapter of Chi Omega at University of Central Florida.

For over 10 years, Janet served the chapter through various roles, from personnel advisor to financial advisor. If you asked any Psi Mu member during that time what Janet’s role was, she would say that Janet was a mentor, a shoulder to cry on, an ear to listen, a friend, a counselor, the heart of the chapter, the living example of Chi Omega’s symphony.

Thank you, Janet, for always being what we needed most.

Advisors like Janet are the reason the Greek experience is still great a one. Personally, I know I would not be where I am without her influence. Take time this month to thank the amazing advisors who have affected your life in ways you can’t even describe.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thank You for Helping Us Rebuild

Lynnda Wolf Hoefler, Delta Zeta, NPC Budget and Finance Committee chairman

We didn’t have Advisor Appreciation Month when I was a collegian, and I don’t think that it is ever too late to say “thank you” to those who mentored us along the way.

I was part of a small recolonization effort for my chapter at Kent State University years ago. I clearly remember the struggles we had when we were without local chapter advisors. For awhile we were so blessed to have a wonderful graduate student, Sanni Tenkku, from our Gamma Alpha Chapter at Baldwin Wallace College as it was called at the time, serving as our chapter advisor. Sanni was a tall, beautiful, willowy young woman, and we just wanted to emulate her in every way possible. She provided so much guidance to us as we worked hard to rebuild the Delta Zeta chapter.

Among those early supporters was our house corporation president, Susan Little, from our Alpha Chapter at Miami University. We were in the little yellow house that slept seven in those days, and it seemed she was there to greet us when we moved in and there to see us off when we went home for the summer. She still serves in that same capacity for my chapter today -- but the chapter is 10 times larger and enjoys a much larger home for 30 women. Sue still takes care of that house like it is her own -- we owe her so much! And she continues to provide guidance and direction for the many collegians’ lives she touches daily.

And then there was Norma Andrisek, another Gamma Alpha, who was serving as the national vice president at the time. She assisted our chapter with our recolonization efforts and guided us through recruitment for many years. She was a very early mentor to me and is still there for me today. I was privileged to serve on her council when she was national president. We have been blessed to travel together to council meetings and conventions for many years. We will head off together again this summer for convention in Tucson, Ariz.

I have been truly blessed with wonderful Delta Zeta advisors and mentors in my life who have become some of my dearest friends. Although all of our experiences and the paths we travel are unique, there are key individuals and advisors in our lives along the way we will always remember with great fondness for the roles they played in our lives. I give special heartfelt thanks to Sanni, Sue and Norma.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Unsung Heroes

Carole Cordray-Syracuse
Donna C. King, Sigma Kappa, NPC vice chairman
During Advisor Appreciation Month, I would like to honor and say thank you to the many women who selflessly and tirelessly give of their time to support our collegiate chapters. One such woman is a friend and sister I work with daily. Carole Cordray-Syracuse juggles a demanding volunteer and professional schedule. Carole serves on the Sigma Kappa NPC delegation as an alternate delegate, as an NPC area advisor and as a collegiate chapter alumnae advisor at Ohio University. What makes Carole's story unique is the fact that she is an alumnae initiate of Sigma Kappa. As an undergraduate at Kent State, Carole’s studies precluded her from joining a sorority. Career and family took her to Athens, Ohio, Ohio University and Sigma Kappa. 
From the day she was initiated, she has continuously given her time, talents and gifts to Sigma Kappa collegians at Ohio University. She has provided guidance, education, support and a good listening ear to countless young women over the years who remain in close contact with Carole today.  
Carole represents a legion of women: our local chapter advisors who are often the unsung heroes of our organizations. They touch the lives of many, give countless hours of service, and deserve our deepest appreciation for the work they do daily. Thank you to Carole, and thank you to the countless women serving our organizations as chapter advisors. Please take the time today to say “thank you” to the women who support our collegiate chapters as alumnae advisors.  

Friday, April 4, 2014

Thank You for Being a Confidant

By Jen Wetzel, Pi Beta Phi, NPC marketing and communications Intern

Advisor Appreciation Month is a time to reflect on those who go above and beyond to play a positive role in the lives of others, simply because they care. I have been fortunate to have these people surrounding me since I went through primary recruitment in January of my freshman year.

As a freshman, I could never have anticipated the impact that belonging to a sorority would have on so many aspects of my life. It has given me the confidence to be a leader, the patience and understanding to belong to a sisterhood of very different personalities and the drive to pursue all of my goals head-on. A lot of this confidence grew out of my position on Pi Phi’s executive council as the vice president of administration (VPA).

In my chapter, the VPA is considered the “rules person.” Not exactly the most fun-loving position for someone who typically approaches situations with humor. The position required me to adjust and stand out as a leader much more than I ever had in the past. During that time, I had several alumnae advisors who were there for me without fail -- there to answer email, stop by the chapter house on a minute’s notice, take midnight phone calls and be there as constant confidants. Two advisors, Kristi Geiger and Gretchen Foran, became my friends.

What makes advisors so special is that they are volunteers. They choose to use their own time to help further your goals and ideals, because they want to see you succeed. During some of the tougher moments of my term as VPA, I recall receiving hand-written and email notes from my alumna counterpart, just dropping in to say I was doing a great job. These moments of reassurance and kindness helped build my confidence as a leader while showing me the support that I had not only as a sorority member but also as a person.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Geraldine “Jerrie” Fredritz Mock, Phi Mu

Photo courtesy of "The Aglaia" of Phi Mu
In honor of Women’s History Month, the NPC blog is featuring biographies of Panhellenic women who have been influential historical figures. Our final post spotlights Geraldine “Jerrie” Fredritz Mock, who was initiated as a Phi Mu at The Ohio State University, where she studied aeronautical engineering. The first woman to fly solo around the world, she had always been fascinated with flying and married a pilot; her husband only encouraged her to pursue her interest in aviation. She received her private pilot’s license in 1958 and decided she wanted to see the world in 1964, leaving for her worldwide flight in March that year.

 Mock encountered several difficulties in her journey around the world. Shortly after leaving from Columbus, Ohio ¾ where she lived with her husband and their three children ¾ she realized that her long-range radio was not working properly. When she landed at her first stop in Bermuda, she found that her brakes were also not working as well as they should have been. She had the radio fixed in Bermuda and made additional stops in Morocco, Tripoli, Cairo, Manila, Saudi Arabia, Guam, Honolulu, California, Arizona, Texas and Kentucky before arriving home in Columbus 29 days, 11 hours and 59 minutes after she left.

Her flight set a total of seven records. Twenty-seven years after Amelia Earhart’s mysterious disappearance, Jerrie Mock became the first woman to fly solo around the world, the first woman to fly around the world in a single-engine plane and the first woman to fly over both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. She also set a record for the fastest flight around the world for Class C1-c aircraft, among several other records. Her plane, the Spirit of Columbus, was re-acquired by Cessna after her flight and was displayed at the Cessna factory until 1976, when Cessna donated it to the Smithsonian Institute. Today, the Smithsonian displays it at the Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles Airport in Washington, D.C.

After her record-setting flight around the world, Mock continued to fly and set several more world records. She was presented with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration Exceptional Service Decoration in 1964 and was awarded the Louis Bleriot Silver Medal by the Féderation Aéronatique Internationale in 1965.


Friday, March 28, 2014

Edith Head, Delta Zeta

Photo courtesy of Delta Zeta Sorority
To help celebrate Women’s History Month, the NPC blog is spotlighting Panhellenic women who have been influential historical figures. The third featured Panhellenic woman is Edith Head, an academy- award winning costume designer and member of Delta Zeta. Head was born in San Bernardino, Calif., and raised in the mining town of Searchlight, Nev. She attended the University of California, Berkeley and earned a master’s degree in French from Stanford University. After completing her education, Head taught school until 1923. In 1924, she began her career as a costume sketch artist for Paramount Pictures.

Although she started as a sketch artist, Head worked her way up and quickly became known as one of Hollywood’s top costume designers. During her career, Head designed costumes for black and white films, color films and television. She designed for the top stars at Paramount Pictures and Universal Studios, where she constructed many iconic dresses that are still replicated today. Head was known for her outgoing personality and willingness to work with stars to create the perfect wardrobe. To honor her contributions to costume design, Head was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

In 1960, Head was selected by Delta Zeta as an honorary convention initiate. She was initiated as an alumna member into Mu Chapter at the University of California, Berkeley. After her initiation, Head continued to be involved with Delta Zeta. She lent her talents to the Southern California Council of Delta Zeta for its Lamplighters’ Flame Fantasy fashion show several times during the 1960s and 1970s. In 1968, Head was named Delta Zeta Woman of the Year.  The Delta Zeta Foundation awards a scholarship in her name for members studying fashion design.

Head died Oct. 24, 1981. In 2013, Google commemorated Head’s accomplishments and what would have been her 116th birthday with a Google Doodle. Head’s career as a costume designer spanned over 50 years and included 35 academy-award nominations and eight Oscars. She holds the record for most academy-award nominations and the most Oscars for a female.

Edith Head will be forever remembered as a Panhellenic sister who opened doors for women in the male-dominated field of costume design.


Saturday, March 22, 2014

Margaret Chase Smith, Sigma Kappa

Photo courtesy of Sigma Kappa

To help celebrate Women’s History Month, the NPC blog is spotlighting Panhellenic women who have been influential historical figures. The second featured woman is Margaret Chase Smith a member of Sigma Kappa. Smith was an accomplished politician and a proud Panhellenic woman.  She was born and raised in Skowhegan, Maine. She graduated from Skowhegan High School in 1916 and married Clyde Smith, a politician, in 1930. Smith became involved in local politics during the 1930s when she was elected to the Maine Republican State Committee. After her husband unexpectedly passed away in 1940, she ran for and won his spot in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Smith was the first woman to serve in both houses of Congress and was the first woman from Maine to serve in both the House and the Senate. Smith’s political career began in 1940 and lasted until 1972; during that time she was the first woman to lead the Senate Republican Conference. In the 1964 presidential election, Smith tossed her hat into the ring and was the first woman to receive a nomination at a major party convention. Despite losing every primary election, she stuck with it until she placed second to the other Republican candidate, Barry Goldwater. Smith was honored for her accomplishments in politics with the Presidential Medal of Freedom awarded by George H.W. Bush in 1989.

Although Smith never attended college, she was awarded an honorary degree from Colby College in 1943. In 1949, the Sigma Kappa Alpha Chapter at Colby College extended Smith an offer of honorary membership. On Feb. 18, 1949, Smith was initiated into the Sigma Kappa sisterhood.

Margaret Chase Smith exemplifies the definition of a Panhellenic woman. She was a fearless leader who opened doors for women in politics. During her lifetime she received 95 honorary degrees and more than 270 honors and awards. Smith will forever be remembered for her contributions as a member of Congress and as a trailblazing Panhellenic woman.