Greek Week Leader Looks Forward to Celebrating a Campus Tradition
UC Senior Jessica King says Greek Week is filled with fun and games, but Greek Week’s philanthropy is what she finds most rewarding.
By: Dawn Fuller
Phone: (513) 556-1823
Photos By: Andrew Higley
Jessica King of Northside headed a student committee that spent the year planning for this very week. King, a member of Chi Omega sorority, is president of the UC Greek Week Executive Board, which worked with UC’s 11 sororities and 21 fraternities to plan Greek Week April 14-21. The very public campus contests and games among the Greek organizations are working to raise $16,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
King has served as vice president and scholarship director of UC’s Pi Alpha Chapter of Chi Omega, which has nearly 75 members. Nationally, Chi Omega, founded in 1895, calls itself the world’s largest women’s fraternal organization with 171 collegiate chapters. King credits her sorority with building her leadership skills and her confidence. “When you join a sorority, there are people here that really support you. You form a close bond, and people want to help you succeed and meet your goals.”
Make-A-Wish is also the national philanthropy of Chi Omega, so the fund-raiser for Greek Week is a cause that’s close to her heart. “The events surrounding Greek Week are really fun to see and to plan, but it’s the ultimate goal – raising money for Make-A-Wish – that’s truly rewarding. Twelve-hundred members of the fraternity and sorority community are coming together for one purpose, and I’m fully confident that we’ll meet our $16,000 goal,” King says.
King is graduating from UC as a Distinguished Honors Scholar in June with a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish, earned from the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. Now 21, she first took classes from UC when she was just 16, by entering UC’s Post Secondary Enrollment Options Program.
Immediately after graduation, she’s off to Texas to work with Teach for America – a national corps of outstanding college graduates of all academic backgrounds who make a two-year commitment to teach in urban and rural public schools. King says she’ll be teaching English to a 99-percent Latino student population. The day after graduation, she flies out to Texas to undergo an intensive summer training program. Aside from spending an academic quarter studying abroad in Costa Rica, it will be the first time she’s lived so far from home for an extended period of time. “It’s a little scary since I’m taking this journey all by myself, but it’s also exciting and I am looking forward to everything that is waiting for me.”
King, of course, is used to transformation. She was attending UC and working as a tour guide for UC Admissions before and after the construction of the MainStreet corridor was completed. “I remember when I first started giving tours and had to walk around all the fences and all the machinery and try to convey to potential students how this mess was one day going to be really amazing,” she says. “Now, our guests immediately see the impact, and I get to tell these future students that I survived the construction and now it’s all ready for them to enjoy.
“I also like hearing the alumni stories about how the campus used to look. It’s a job I will miss after I graduate,” she says.
But for now, it’s Greek Week. Let the games begin.