By: Jacqueline Johnson
Sororities hope to empower women through inclusivity
“I believe that there’s definitely more to be done,” she said. “You can never stop progressing, [and] that should be [why] things should keep moving and going forward each day.”
Chandler Duncan, 21, a member of Pi Beta Phi, and also a rising senior at the University of Alabama, echoed Norman’s assessment of the University’s progress and added that her social circle has made her aware of this issue.
“I have a lot of friends outside of greek life, so it makes me more attentive,” Duncan said. “I think [the University’s] doing a pretty good job at making it happen as quickly as they can, but there’s still a long way to go.“
According to a news release from UA, Fall 2015 ushered in 214 minority women, including 25 of those who self-identified as black, indicating an increase of nearly 13 percent from 2014.
Duncan, a native of Fort Myers, Florida, summed up the need for inclusivity on campus as not only a University-wide standard, but a principle by which to live.
“I think being a [part of] diverse group of women makes us empowering to all people rather than just selected few,” Duncan said.
As the school year approaches and sorority rush is about to begin, minority participation in greek life continues to tick upward. But some members of UA sororities say more progress must be made.
It’s expected that various combinations of the greek alphabet separate one member from the next, but some members of The University of Alabama sororities hope that’s where the division stops.
Shelby Norman, 21, a rising senior at the University of Alabama, and a member of the University’s Student Government Association’s (SGA) Division of Greek Life Affairs, expressed support for full integration of UA’s greek sororities even though she has been a member of the historically black Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority for years.
”You have to understand you can’t say, ‘Oh, they had theirs first, why don’t we have our own?’,” Norman said. “It was something that was created as a necessity, because individuals were not allowed [to be members]. I think that people try to make that argument but they don’t realize that it’s a different argument entirely.” Norman said.
Norman, the Loganville, Georgia native, said that although her sorority was founded as a response to the traditionally white sororities, she was still inspired by the possibility of further improving the diversity of UA’s greek community.