Quality versus Quantity
Delta Sigma Theta remains dedicated despite small numbers
Delta Sigma Theta is a small but driven sorority. After having four of its six members graduate in
April 2013, the Grand Valley State University chapter is down to just two remaining members.
“Even though there are two of us, we will continue the work of our organization and uphold our
values,” chapter president Veniecia Wilson said. “Right now we are focusing on doing whatever we
can do while we are here, and on graduating.”
Chartered as the Lambda Pi chapter at GVSU by seven women in 1974, Delta Sigma Theta is a part
of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, the national coordinating body for the nine historically
African-American fraternities and sororities. Over the years, the GVSU chapter’s numbers have
fluctuated. Despite its small size, the sorority continues to focus on the core missions and values of
“In 2011, only one girl was a member (of the GVSU chapter),” Wilson said. “So we are not the
smallest we’ve ever been. The girls who (graduated in April 2013) were actually one of the largest
lines there has been in seven or eight years.”
With only two members, the sisterhood has to have a great bond and a hardworking demeanor.
“Communication over what needs to be done and getting it done,” vice president Lindsay Welborn
said. “We have to make a point to show that, even with little members, we can do it.”
This requires dedication.
“If there’s an emergency, you have to drop what you’re doing and take care of it,” Wilson said.
“When you love an organization as much as we do, you do it.”
GVSU’s Delta Sigma Theta chapter remains focused on its goals as a sorority and as a sisterhood.
“We are a private, non-profit organization that provides assistance and support to the local
community and to communities around the world by educating and helping out those communities,
and by sticking to our rubric of events,” Wilson said.
One of the main focuses of the organization is community service. Throughout the year, the group
averages one to two volunteer projects per week. Service projects include Habitat for Humanity,
Feeding America and collection of canned goods.
“We do service as a way of educating the community,” Wilson said. “Through events, we try to get
the (GVSU) student body involved.”
Past events hosted by the sorority include programs with subjects addressing domestic violence,
rape and the 2012 presidential election.
“We touch on topics not everyone has an opportunity to hear about,” Wilson said.
Rather than being discouraged by its small membership, Delta Sigma Theta achieves success. It
won several Greek awards at the 2013 Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards, including Chapter of
Excellence, the Lighthouse Award and the Founder’s Award.
“Hard work and dedication, sorority over everything, even school, though it shouldn’t be that way,”
Wilson said. “We have an adviser to help us and we take the sorority very seriously.”
Delta Sigma Theta is a selective organization. A minimum cumulative GPA requirement of 2.75 and
hours of community service are required of applicants, which makes finding members even more
difficult. Women interested in joining must first seek Delta Sigma Theta out directly; the sorority
will then consider them as applicants for membership.
“One of our mottos is that intelligent women seek out (Delta Sigma Theta),” Wilson said.
GVSU’s racial make-up has also made attracting members difficult for Delta Sigma Theta.
“Our sorority is not segregated,” Wilson said. “However, African-Americans are normally attracted
throughout tradition.” With a larger proportion of students identifying as white at GVSU, the
sorority has limited interest. This year’s rush week, known as Delta Week, begins Oct. 27 and
consists of a week’s worth of programs that educate potential members on what they can expect
from joining Delta Sigma Theta.
The members’ love for the sorority has kept the chapter alive.
“After you pledge, you’re in for life,” Wilson said. “It’s a combination of sisterhood and service—
meeting a network of people who love and support you no matter what while doing service projects
(with) one of the largest organizations in the world.”
For more information on the GVSU chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, visit the sorority’s page at