University council works to empower others

Alicia Seitz

The University of Akron’s Panhellenic Council (PHC) is active in fundraising and philanthropy, along with many donations and long, hard hours put into helping Greek Life and the community at UA.

President Gabrielle Dimengo said that the point of the council is “to unify and maintain the sorority life here at The University of Akron.”

The PHC consists of members of sororities on campus. During the fall 2012 semester, the PHC raised $11,390 for national and local philanthropy. PHC also spent 4,395 hours doing fundraisers that were performed by the whole community, according to the council.

Council members on the executive board have unique responsibilities in each of the university’s chapters.

Executive positions other than Dimengo’s include vice presidents of administration, recruitment, membership, communications, judicial affairs, management and sisterhood.

PHC includes morer than 300 women, making it the largest women’s organization on the University of Akron campus.

“Each Panhellenic sorority is made up of strong, intelligent women,” Dimengo said. “Sorority Life provides opportunities to be involved in intramural sports, Songfest, Greek Week, philanthropic events, and many other social events to get to know other students
at UA.”

The PHC normally focuses on causes pertaining to women. “To help focus on sisterhood and each chapter, each sorority has its own philanthropy in the Panhellenic Council,” said Kristin Forkapa, the vice president of sisterhood.

Each chapter has the opportunity to help and donate to the organization of the sororities’ choice. The organizations include Alpha Delta Pi Ronald McDonald House, Alpha Gamma Delta Foundation (which supports diabetes research and prevention), and Alpha Phi Women’s Cardiac Care.

Along with these philanthropies, the PHC also helps the surrounding Akron community by having fundraising events where the proceeds go directly to the organization.

Fundraisers include things such as sisterhood events and open events to all of the UA community. Another example of fundraising is the PHC’s work with Access, a women’s shelter in Akron that the sisters donate to.

Along with their faculty appreciation day, the council promotes awareness of women’s issues, risk management and other chosen topics through presentations.

Many negative stereotypes, including those pertaining to intelligence, surround the sororities and fraternities, but the council said these are not accurate. For instance, each year every student with a certain GPA, depending on the chapter, may join Greek Life.

“PHC consistently maintains over a 3.0 community GPA, which is higher than the overall undergraduate women’s average GPA,” said Dimengo.

PHC said that they strive to get rid of these negative stereotypes and show The University of Akron that there are many wonderful opportunities when joining and being a part of Greek Life.

For more information on Greek Life at UA, visit uakron.edu/studentlife/fraternityandsororitylife.

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