Panhellenic Blog Celebrates Success
The blog, started by a member of USF’s Panhellenic Executive Board, hopes to combat stereotypes around sororities.
By Laura Kneski
TAMPA, Fla. (Sept. 21, 2012) – Alcohol and partying are just a couple of the negative impressions associated with sorority life, and that’s what University of South Florida student Danielle Kushner wants to change.
Kushner, vice president of external affairs for USF’s Panhellenic Executive Board, knows firsthand that the stereotypes can adversely impact a sorority. That’s why she hopes her blog can open some eyes and warm some hearts around campus.
Originally, the blog was created in lieu of a newsletter from USF’s nine sorority chapters. The intent was to provide a platform to showcase some of the successes and accomplishments the chapters had attained in the name of their philanthropies. But when one young woman decided to share the story of how she came to be a sister, the blog’s metamorphosis was instantaneous.
USFPanLove.blogspot.com is now host to dozens of personal entries submitted by sorority members. They provide first-hand accounts of sorority life at USF, provide information on how easily someone can get involved and provide inspiration to others. Kushner shares that her favorite anecdotes are the ones that can target specific readers, especially shy women.
“People think that you need to come in and be peppy, but I think that the best leaders are the ones who have grown from that (shyness),” Kushner said.
The common misperceptions are due to ingrained assumptions, Kushner said. For years, sororities have been thought of as a place where parties abound.
Kushner points out that sororities are much more focused on networking and community service. The mission statement of the USF Panhellenic Association notes that it wants to “empower all women to exceed their full potential by providing honest and caring relationships, leadership experiences, and the opportunity to develop lifelong skills through collaboration, education, purposeful programming and accountability.”
“The point of a sorority to me,” Kushner said, “is for women to reach their full potential.”
USFPanLove combats some of the negatives and misperceptions. It highlights the triumphs of the students. It promotes friendships and celebrates successes.
The blog can be found at USFPanLove.blogspot.com and the main Panhellenic site is USFPanhellenic.com. Any questions are more than welcome, and members of the USF Panhellenic council are located on the second floor of the Marshall Student Center, room 2300.