My name is Paige Hopkins. I have a B.A in Art Education from Adelphi University and an M.A in Fine Art from Adelphi University. I studied art and philosophy abroad in Florence, Italy. I have also done continuing education as a teacher through Chico State. I am originally from Long Island, New York but moved to Northern California two years ago where I live with my husband and step daughter. I am currently a full time Elementary Music Teacher where I teach at two schools. One of my school’s is on Beale Air force Base, where my husband is stationed.
Your high school days are slowly winding down. Everyone is counting down to the last days of school and discussing future plans. You’ve been accepted and have chosen your college of choice. Now what? How will you make new friends? Will you change the kind of person you are? Will you join and organization on your new campus? Will you “Go Greek”? These are the questions I asked myself when I began my college journey. I have always been interested in the idea of joining sorority. I didn’t know what to expect or if it was something that was right for me.
Arriving to school that first semester of my college career, it was both terrifying and exciting. I was meeting new friends that lived in my dorm building and creating a sense of self through my studies as an art major. Still, something was missing. It was then I knew I wanted to “Go Greek”. I went to recruitment and received a bid from my sorority of choice. I wasn’t sure just yet what that meant but now looking back on the choice I made it changed my entire life.
Going Greek taught me so many life lessons that I use almost every day in my adult life. It was learning how to deal with older sisters who wanted respect. Learning about my pledge sisters whom I had to work with and collaborate to get through my new member process. The new member process is where I learned to really have compassion and care for others. I listened to the stories of my sisters’ pasts, learned to love the flaws they presented in their future, and figured out how to work together with other women that I would have normally not wanted too. The process was intimidating, long, and at times didn’t feel worth it. However, learning about someone and why they chose the sorority gave me hope that one day I too would feel the passion, love, and respect they had for their organization.
Becoming a sister was a truly life changing moment. I finally felt like I belonged somewhere. I felt like I had developed friendships that truly would last a lifetime. These girls did not only know who I was but they respected and accepted everything about me. I couldn’t imagine going through the highs and lows of college without this kind of support system. When I was struggling with a class, there was a sister who could help me excel. When I needed a shoulder to cry on, someone was there. When I made mistakes, these women forgave me without hesitation. Developing these kinds of relationships showed me who I really was, and who I still am today. If I asked today the best part of my college life, it would be my sorority.