Whether you’re part of the 85% of graduates who move home, or one who goes straight into a job or graduate school, you’re still no longer an active member in your chapter. Here are some things to expect:
1. Your best college stories are the ones with your sisters and Greek events, no one outside of a college or Greek community can relate.
Be prepared to come up with alternative conversation pieces to relate to your “hometown friends” or new colleges. Trust me, they become just as annoyed with your stories as the “unaffiliated” population at the school you attended.
2. You will need to redefine yourself.
Think about whom you really want to be as a person and work towards that. Your letters have been your best accessories thus far. Walking through the thousands of people on campus, you were somebody; you belonged to an exclusive community, you were aware of this and so was everyone else. To adults, you didn’t have to be anyone or be doing anything, you were a student and that title was admirable. To your peers, you didn’t care how they perceived you as long as you had your clique in the Greek life.
The next phase after college, when you’re asked what you do or who you are, how will you define yourself? You may not have a career yet, or continue being a student. Guess what? There are plenty of things that you are after your sorority life. You are a role model, a philanthropist, a leader, an entrepreneur, a networker, a policy maker, and so much more. Apply these valuable skills to something you are passionate about.
3. We all know that social media has taken over; it’s a sorority’s most effective marketing tool and your Greek community’s way of connecting campus-wide.
As a srat star, you obvi follow all social media outlets of your chapter. Scrolling through your instagram and twitter and seeing a picture of the newest pledge class, their bid day, and your sisters still lucky enough to be in school, will absolutely crush you.
Appreciate your sisters and the value the time you have left. Before you graduate, accept that your chapter can, and will, continue the cycle and go on without you. Be okay with this, and happy that your chapter is thriving; without you and your sisters overcoming hurdles to keep your charter you wouldn’t have a chapter to be nostalgic about.
4. Reality: you and your soul sisters are now in a long-distance relationship.
One day you’re a room away, the next day you not only move your tassel from one side to the other, but you and your other half move to opposite sides of towns, states, or even countries. My best friend leaving her house key on the counter the day after graduation was an emotion I had never felt before.
Imagine being forced to break up with your soulmate when it wasn’t what either of you wanted; that is the moment you truly realize everything is changing. You have run into more of your sisters than the Starbucks on every corner that you drive by, this accessibility will no longer exist. You need to learn how to make an effort. Like when you want your boyfriend to show you he cares, but you don’t want to have to tell him; it goes the same way with your besties. My PBOs and I send each other surprise letters and small reminders of memories we’ve shared; we know we’re always thinking of each other regardless of how busy our lives may be.
5. Most importantly: IT GETS BETTER.
You’re going to feel like the best years of your life are over and that you have no idea what you’re going to do next. Be open to change and actually be excited about it!
You now have an opportunity to pursue anything you want. Be confident; the experiences that you have had and the role you have played in making your organization successful is far more valuable in life after college than any major listed on that degree of yours. Go into interviews and sell yourself, just like you did during rush week.
As you rediscover yourself and start working towards your goals, every win, big or small, will bring you more satisfaction and happiness than a good grade on an exam or the exec role you were voted in for in chapter.
Your letters are for life, you will always carry those values and experiences with you, but change is inevitable. Moving to the next stage is always scary and difficult, but when you look back, you realize it’s only gotten better with time. Your time will become your most valuable possession, spend it following your dreams and doing whatever makes you happy.