For four semesters in a row, the university’s Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. chapter never officially had more than three members. This semester marks the first time the group will meet the student handbook requirement of a minimum of seven active members.
According to the AKA website, the sorority is an international service organization and is the oldest Greek-lettered organization established by African-American college-educated women.
AKA President Liberty Bell said trying to revive the sorority has been challenging, but she takes it in stride every day.
“Yes, a lot of things you can do when you have larger numbers, but the eight of us are really passionate about what we do,” Bell said.
Cynthia Walsh, assistant dean of student development, said smaller groups could keep their organization on campus if they provide evidence to the 0ffice of Student Organizations that they have been effectively trying to retain members.
“If they still haven’t been able to meet their numbers then say, “OK here is what we’ve done, we would really like to continue,'” Walsh said. “At that point, the Office of Student Organizations can make a decision based on whatever evidence they provide us.”
One of the Panhellenic sorority presidents, Aly Pollard, aid smaller groups, like AKA, should be given the chance to prove they want to keep their organization active.
“If they are doing what they are supposed to be doing, doing all the events and the activities and holding themselves up to a standard, I don’t think they should be penalized just because they can’t get a certain quota,” Pollard said.
AKA member Brittany Turner, who is also a senior cadet in Army ROTC and a TCU cheerleader, said even though the sorority is small, it holds a special place in her heart.
“That sisterhood is something I’ve never really had because my family is a military family, so we move around,” Turner said. “It’s definitely emotional for me to never have had a best friend or anything like that and then to come here to TCU and actually find that bond with only eight girls.”
Chelsea Rowel, a sophomore AKA member, said having a small group was actually a plus and one of the sorority’s benefits.
“I feel like if our group was too big, I wouldn’t have the chance to meet everybody as well as I have with my eight sisters,” Rowel said.
AKA’s adviser, Bertha Scott, said she believes the sorority will continue on a strong journey and will have a big effect on the TCU community.
Bell said AKA puts on several events around campus throughout the year, including a back to school luau that took place earlier this semester.
She said the chapter is looking forward to its upcoming Ivy Week activities. Ivy Week lasts for six days, and will take place at various locations around campus.
Ivy Week involves different programs, ranging from group aerobics classes to attending church together as a group, Bell said. It begins Sept. 27 and lasts through Oct. 3.