Sorority hosts weekend-long leadership retreat for women
Last weekend, the Omega Phi Chi sorority held a retreat for female leaders, which aimed to support Rutgers women and promote solutions to prominent social issues.
Mason Gross School of the Arts junior Asia Dockery ran the event and said that the goal was to empower women and provide them with tools to be better leaders.
Dockery has been in the Omega Phi Chi sorority since the Spring 2016 semester and she is currently the public relations chair.
Omega Phi Chi was founded in 1988 at Rutgers to represent females from diverse backgrounds. According to the site for the national organization, the overall purpose of the sorority is to promote unity among all women.
The idea for the summit was first proposed by a member of the group in December to provide a platform for speakers to address Rutgers women, Dockery said.
While Omega Phi Chi organized the event, the Asian-American sorority Alpha Kappa Delta Phi also helped, acting as the event’s co-sponsor and co-marketer.
All of the students at the conference were considered campus leaders, Dockery said.
One of those speakers, School of Arts and Sciences senior Chelsie Riche, shared her experiences studying abroad in South Africa, emphasizing differences she saw in education based on class and race as well as the need to make lasting change.
“For the overall Rutgers community there are limitations. I don’t often see it. Especially in the room, it’s predominantly women, women of color, and it’s not often that I see things like that and I think that if it was something that we were to build upon within the larger framework of Rutgers that would be great,” Riche said.
Thu Truong, a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore, is not in either of the sororities, but decided to attend after seeing promotions for the event on Instagram. She was interested because she is a mentor at Douglass Residential College (DRC) and a classroom facilitator who wanted to further develop her leadership skills, she said.
She felt she got a lot out of the program because it allowed her to connect and learn with other women leaders while focusing on broader social issues, she said.
“There are not a lot of people outside of DRC doing this,” Truong said. “This is a good way to reach out to other people, to go to things like this because it’s not just about women’s rights, it’s about human rights and I think I need you need to learn things like this.”
Kimberly Peterman is a School of Arts and Sciences junior. She is a contributing writer for The Daily Targum.