Northwestern’s chapter of the sorority Sigma Gamma Rho hosted their Neophyte Show on April 2 in Harris Hall to welcome freshman Ashley Woods to Eta chapter, joining senior Qunsia Daniel. Woods is a freshman from the South Side of Chicago who is studying Learning & Organizational Change. She entered college knowing that she would join a sorority, but didn’t know which until she attended the Sigma Gamma Rho information session where she found a connection.
“I chose Sigma Gamma Rho because the sisterhood. It felt so genuine, and I got along and connected with Qunsia and Loreal so much…There’s a lot of community service events that focus on empowering women, with a focus on education and that’s two things that I really value.”
Prior to the show, Woods prepared for her big reveal in the basement of Harris. With her hands clasped tightly together and a timid expression on her face, she silently recited her speech in pure concentration. During the show, she executed effortlessly, and the crowd was entertained by her self-assured attitude throughout her solo speech and performance.
Her course of intake began soon after winter break, so since then she has been studying the extent of Sigma Gamma Rho history, the Greek alphabet, and much more. Her mother was initially hesitant about her decision to join because she imagined Sigma Gamma Rho to mirror sorority stereotypes shown in popular culture.
“Once I told her that this is something that I’m really interested in and I wouldn’t do anything that would make her seem like she didn’t raise me the right way…she understood I wouldn’t do anything really crazy.”
Now that she is endowed with rites and a bunch of new paraphernalia, Woods is excited to host more events to spread awareness about the sorority. Being one of two members in Eta chapter this year, Woods will assume a position of leadership that allows her to propose and shape ideas.
“I have hopes that at least by the time I graduate, [Sigma Gamma Rho] is a thriving sorority and I leave a good foundation behind for other women to be able to participate in.”