Students at the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics have almost 30 unique student groups that they can choose to join. In each installment of this series, an executive member of one of these student groups will share their first-hand experience choosing, participating in and eventually leading their group.
Jill Sawyer, Class of 2022 economics and marketing double major, is the president of Alpha Kappa Psi (AKPsi) at the Lerner College. Sawyer shared why she joined AKPsi , what makes this group unique and more!
Lerner: When and why did you choose to join this student group?
Sawyer: As a sophomore and a recent transfer to the Lerner College in Fall 2019, I was looking for an organization to help me both grow professionally and build social connections. AKPsi was the perfect place for me, as it is a group of like-minded and hard-working individuals who push each other towards success. From the first night of my recruitment process, I met so many brothers that made me feel welcome and at home. I knew AKPsi would give me the perfect balance of professional and social development with the sense of community and family I was looking for.
Lerner: What is the mission/goal of your student group?
Sawyer: AKPsi was founded on the principles of educating the public to appreciate and demand higher ideals in business and to further the individual welfare of its members during college and beyond. AKPsi is a brotherhood that means many different things to different people, but all members share the fraternity’s vision: “Alpha Kappa Psi is recognized as the premier developer of principled business leaders.”
Lerner: When and where does your student group meet and approximately how many members do you have?
Sawyer: Our chapter has about 115 members who meet weekly on Monday nights normally in Kirkbride Hall, but all meetings will be held virtually this semester. In addition to our chapter meetings, we hold a variety of professional development events with major companies and prominent speakers, as well as brotherhood events to keep our chapter connected both in-person and virtually.
Lerner: What is your best memory from this student group?
Sawyer: My best memory from AKPsi was as a new member in Fall 2019. Towards the end of the new member education process, both pledges and brothers went to Milburn Orchards for a hayride and bonfire. This night was so special for me as it was the first time I got to spend quality time with the brothers alongside my pledge class. It was full of fun and showed all of my hard work and dedication to the organization was beginning to pay off and I was even more excited to become an official brother.
Lerner: What is unique about your student group?
Sawyer: AKPsi is much more than just another organization; it is a unique, prestigious association of students, professors, graduates and professionals with common experiences and goals. Our organization provides the perfect balance of professional development and social events. We provide opportunities for professional success while also holding fun, social-based events.
Lerner: What has been your proudest moment leading your student group?
Sawyer: One of my proudest moments so far leading AKPsi was seeing our brotherhood come together and build an active online environment over the past year. Being virtual, it can be tough to gain a sense of community and harder to plan events to keep brothers engaged. Alongside other members of the executive board, our organization has successfully implemented a virtual recruitment plan, several online professional development events and brotherhood events. Our brotherhood has such a strong bond that we use our strengths to adapt to ever-changing environments and it has been an honor to play a role in our chapter’s growth and transition.
Lerner: What are your goals for the future of your student group?
Sawyer: As for the future of AKPsi, I hope to continue to form strong bonds among brothers, creating a family full of dedicated and hard-working people who support each other through anything. I hope to push our chapter to build professional connections and skills by providing a diverse array of events and speakers for the chapter. We also strive to work towards making our organization a safe and welcoming place for all while upholding our core values of brotherhood, unity, knowledge, integrity and service.
Lerner: How has your student group helped you grow?
Sawyer: Being a member of Alpha Kappa Psi has significantly impacted not only my college career, but my life as a whole. Coming into the university, I was very unsure of myself and often questioned my abilities and skills. After completing our chapter’s new member education process and spending some time as a brother, my own self confidence has grown tremendously. With the whole brotherhood supporting me and all the skills they taught me, I now am confident in my skills and get to give back to the organization that has given so much to me.