It is a pleasure to meet you and welcome you to Cal's Panhellenic Council (PHC). Our organization is home to the university's brightest academics, innovative researchers, dedicated athletes, budding businesswomen, and inspiring community activists at Berkeley. With 13 chapters and more than 1900 members, we live out our four pillars of friendship, scholarship, leadership, and service in truly dynamic, varied ways. We are energized and ready to meet our largest PNM class in years.
My journey to joining a sorority is far from typical (but then again, no story is quite "typical"). I transferred to Berkeley in Fall 2020 and, in the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, spent that school year entirely remote and at home in Los Angeles County. No one in my immediate or extended family has ever joined a sorority, and the prospect of joining one seemed daunting. I was older than many prospective new members (PNMs), did not (and do not) look like the stereotypical sorority woman, and considered myself perpetually uncool. And somehow, I swallowed my insecurities and went through Fall Primary Recruitment because I wanted to be part of something special at Cal. I am so glad I did. Immediately, I was welcomed into something indelibly magical. I am overjoyed to meet PHC women in every class, Cal event, and endeavor at Berkeley. Because of PHC women, I have been called to be my best self, to take myself less seriously, to laugh harder and more fully, and to reflect and reckon seriously with what are my most important values. What a privilege it is to lead this organization.
Having said all this, I also want to acknowledge the work that PHC and Greek life writ large have left to do. Greek life has historically been a racist, discriminatory institution designed to uphold White supremacy. Berkeley is by no means an exception to this. We are working actively to change this to ensure that we don't just provide lip service to diversity, equity, and inclusion but follow through with tangible action. We value and celebrate the multiplicity of your lived experiences and sincerely hope each of you will feel your most confident, comfortable selves in PHC. If you have questions, suggestions, or want a conversation, don't hesitate to contact me at email@example.com.
With all my Panhellenic Love,