Eta Pi, the Virginia Tech chapter of the Alpha Delta Pi sorority, has been awarded the Maxine Blake Golden Lion award by the organization’s 2011 national Grand Convention. This is the highest honor a chapter may receive.

In order to be recognized for this award, individual chapters must meet and excel in all areas of operations and programming for a minimum of six consecutive years. This is the first Golden Lion awarded to the Virginia Tech chapter. The award is given every two years.

Chapter President Brittany Walker of Covington, Va., a senior double majoring in biology and psychology in the College of Science, said the award is ultimately the culmination of 10 years of hard work, and that it says far more about the entire organization rather than just the current members.

“To all of us, getting the Golden Lion is such a big pay off because it’s something we’ve been working toward for so long, but our most important thing is our sisterhood,” she said. “While getting awards is amazing, it really speaks to the sisterhood that we have that we’ve been able to work together for 10 years. So many different sisters have been a part of it, sisters we don’t even know.”

Prior to beginning the six consecutive years of overall excellence necessary to be eligible for the Golden Lion award, individual chapters must have met other criteria for at least four years. Walker said if a chapter consistently meets all of the criteria every year, 10 years is the least amount of time it can take to be awarded the Golden Lion.

The Eta Pi chapter has been active at Virginia Tech since 1990.

Some of the chapter’s strongest showings were in philanthropy, fundraising, and academic achievement. The chapter participates in Alpha Delta Pi’s national philanthropic cause, the Ronald McDonald House, by visiting and assisting the Roanoke location several times a month. Fundraising efforts for the cause include the annual Safari Hunt. Members from all of the university’s fraternities and sororities come together to raise money in this week-long event, which was held in September.

Other fundraising efforts include the annual 5K benefiting the Gregory Weiner Foundation, which raises money to help the foundation promote awareness of safety helmets. Weiner was a first-year Virginia Tech student when he died following a skateboarding accident in 2008. He was not wearing a helmet. The next 5K event is planned for April.

The chapter must also maintain at least a 3.0 grade point average (GPA) over the calendar year. Eta Pi has accomplished this, and held the highest GPA of any fraternity or sorority at Virginia Tech in the spring 2011 semester.

Other criteria taken into account by the Grand Convention include various education, recruitment, and leadership requirements.

Alpha Delta Pi is part of Virginia Tech’s Panhellenic Council, which was recently honored with several top awards, including Overall Excellence, by the National Panhellenic Conference.

Formal recruitment for the Panhellenic Council begins in January. Those interested must register for formal recruitment on the Panhellenic Council website.

There are also several 365 Recruitment events throughout the remainder of the fall semester for those who want to learn more about the organization.

 

 

Written by Jennifer Gibson.