Zoë Rogers is the current president of the Panhellenic Council. In her new role, she hopes to focus on promoting the values of friendship and service across the eight sororities on campus. To achieve these goals, she dedicates her time to conducting meetings, collaborating with other leaders in each chapter and the school and overseeing upcoming initiatives.
What made you want to be involved in the Panhellenic Council in addition to your prior involvement with Greek life?
Last semester, I thought that I wanted to slate for a position in my sorority. I thought a lot about one of the questions, which was, “What is your vision for the sorority in the next year?” I considered how I wanted to extend our influence on campus and interact with the other sororities more. We all have friends in different sororities, so I feel that participating in activities that focus on our similarities rather than our differences is a crucial element of being part of the Panhellenic community.
I went back through the descriptions of positions offered and realized that none of them really fit this desire to foster the relationships between sororities. It almost felt like a sign when, the next day, I received an email about applying to the Panhellenic Executive Board. Reading through these positions, I realized that this was how I really wanted to get more involved.
What does your day-to-day consist of as Panhellenic President?
Much of my time during the week is spent attending meetings. I have a weekly meeting with the chapter delegates, a meeting with the executive council and a meeting with our Panhellenic Advisor Shane Taylor. I have other bi-weekly and monthly meetings as well. On a typical day, I go to class and then my afternoons usually consist of communicating with university administration or catching up with some of my executive council members to discuss current projects. In the evenings, I like to take a break and spend some time with friends.
What is the time commitment as Panhellenic President? Do you think people realize how much work goes into this?
The main commitments of the Panhellenic president are conducting meetings, managing communication between the school and the chapter presidents, collaborating with the presidents of Interfraternity Congress and National Pan-Hellenic Council and overseeing projects that members of the executive council are working on. I would say that I probably spend about five to ten hours a week working on Panhellenic-related material. In all honesty, I think that most of what the Panhellenic Executive council does is a mystery to most people. One of our goals this year is to increase awareness about what Panhel really is and to find new ways to connect with the chapters.
How has the transition been for you this semester coming back from abroad in addition to being elected to such an important role?
Last semester, I studied abroad in Salamanca, Spain. While it was a great experience, in some ways, it was slightly isolating because we all lived with different host families. Towards the end of the semester, I was ready to get back to campus where I could see all of my friends every day.
When I found out in November that I got this position, it just made the excitement grow. This position has made the transition back to campus feel a little busier, but I was ready for a packed schedule after a laid-back semester in Spain. I like to keep busy, and this has helped with that.
What are the values of Panhellenic as a council that you want to emphasize while you are president?
Two of the Panhellenic values that we as a council are striving to emphasize this year are friendship and service. We hope to encourage friendship among members of different sororities through group events involving members from multiple organizations. We hope to promote service by incorporating more events centered around our Panhellenic philanthropy, Circle of Sisterhood. The purpose of this organization is to fund education for girls and women around the world who would normally be deprived of this opportunity. In the past, this cause hasn’t been focused on as much, but we believe that if the whole Panhellenic community comes together to support this amazing organization, we could make an incredible impact.
The slogan of the Panhellenic Council is “women supporting women.” What does this mean to you?
During a time when there is so much positive change centered around women, it is so rewarding to be in a position where I can challenge women to work hard for what they believe in. As I mentioned before, I believe that Panhellenic is such a supportive community. To me, this slogan represents the unity and encouragement that underlies all of the Panhellenic Council’s actions. It means sticking up for one another and providing a community where others feel supported and loved by their peers. Although we are eight different sororities, we form one community, and together, we can make amazing changes.