The Fall 2011 Collegian of the Quarter is Ginger Burton. Ginger is featured as our Collegian of the Quarter for her consistent involvement with the sisterhood, her Presidency with the MGC at Purdue Lafayette, her involvement with the NASPA NUPF program, and more.
Ginger took some time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions for us about her commitment to service and excellence.
Tell us more about you! Where are you from? Why did you join Delta Phi Mu?
I am originally from Austin, Texas but I moved to Greencastle, Indiana when I was fifteen. Though, I am still a VERY proud Texan!!!I decided that I wanted to go Greek my sophomore year so I explored my options starting off with doing informal rush for Panhellenic. I went to several houses and went to social events with the sisters. I had a fun experience but the overwhelming amount of girls made it feel impersonal. I decided that maybe going Greek wasn’t for me. I got an email from the Latino Cultural Center about a call out for a Latina sorority so spur of the moment I decided to attend. I really connected with what Delta Phi Mu stood for and the sisters made me feel welcomed. Also, I had decided getting back in touch with my Latina roots wouldn’t be such a bad thing; I missed the sense of family that went along with it. After the informational, I went to a few socials and decided to pledge. Best decision of my college career! I love Delta Phi Mu and wouldn’t trade my sisters for the world.
You are graduating this semester. I'm sure you're excited. What do you plan to do after graduation?
I’m in the process of applying to graduate schools all over the nation. I want to get a masters in higher education with an emphasis on Student Affairs. Ideally, I want to work at a university in Texas advising in the Greek Life department. Going Greek has changed my life and I’d like to help other undergraduates in their respective organizations. Working with students has always been a passion of mine and this career would provide that on a daily basis.
Ginger, we selected you because of your multiple accomplishments and responsibilities this year. You are a NASPA NUPF mentee. Can you tell us more about this program? How did you get connected with this program and what you have learned so far?
The NASPA Undergraduate Fellows program is a semi-structured mentoring program for undergraduate students wishing to explore and better understand the field of student affairs and/or higher education. Students and mentors apply as a pair, and if selected are provided the foundation to establish a semi-structured mentoring relationship at their institution. Students, once selected, are known as Fellows, and are also given the opportunity to attend a national conference, participate in paid internships, and participate in the Summer Leadership Institute.I was told about this program by Delta Phi Mu’s National President at the time, Christa Wessels. With her guidance, I applied to the program and was accepted. It has been a great help and given me a lot of great connections with other students pursuing the same goal. I’ve also formed a close relationship with my mentor on Purdue’s campus, Martia Brawner. She has helped me to realize what I need to go in my postgraduate career and informed me of several opportunities. Overall, the program has been a great contribution to my success and will continue to help me in my career.
You also serve as the President of the Multicultural Greek Council. Tell us more about this experience. What have you enjoyed? What has challenged you?
I have truly enjoyed serving as the President of MGC. It has been very rewarding seeing organizations put aside their differences and work together as members of Purdue’s Greek community. It inspires me to see Greeks come together for a collective purpose, we can accomplish so much more when we are united. I constantly strive to emphasize this to MGC and it’s wonderful to see the results.
The biggest challenge with being MGC President has been motivating the organizations to stay involved. Every organization is focused on their internal issues that they forget to reach out to each other. I try to build those bridges and give them opportunities to work together to build unity. It’s been a struggle but I think we are finally moving in the right direction.
If you could describe your legacy to the Purdue Greek Community, what would it be?
I was one of the first of four MGC members inducted into Order of Omega, a Greek Honor Society. As MGC President, I maintained involvement in this organization so MGC will always have a presence because it is dominated by the other councils. I encourage other MGC members to apply for membership and hope this will be a continued legacy.
I have tried to be an active, helpful Greek in a large community. I hope that my contributions are remembered and that Greeks continue to build each other up.
It has been an honor to be selected. I strive to be a good sister and will always remain active with Delta Phi Mu.
Ginger is an inspiration to all sisters of Delta Phi Mu and alwomen who wish to make a difference in their community by uplifting others while we climb.
Congratulations Ginger for being named the Fall 2011Collegian of the Quarter! We look forward to all the great things you will do in the future.
Pictured below is Ginger with our fellow Alpha Chapter Sisters doing the "D-PHI Walk".