In joining any organization, you not only become a part of something bigger than yourself, but you also become a representation of your organization. As a member of Gamma Phi Beta, others will recognize you, especially around campus, and associate you with the Sorority as a whole. New members will look to you for guidance and it’s especially important to mentor younger sisters who are adjusting to college and sorority life. You don’t have to be celebrity to be a role model to others. Whether you are their peer, co-worker, friend or sister, here are five ways that you can act as a role model in your community.

1. Follow through.

When promising to complete a task, ensure that you are available to complete the task in a timely manner. Not doing so will not only place the burden on someone else, but will affect the trust others place in you in the future.

2. Treat everyone with respect.

Respect is a two-way street. If you don’t treat others with respect, there is a good chance they won’t treat you with any either. Whether you are speaking with a cashier, a maintenance worker, your sisters or a professor, everyone deserves respect, regardless of their position or social standing.  

3. Help others grow.

When your sisters show an interest in a leadership position, encourage them. Helping others reach their own goals and potential is one of the best ways to give back. Provide feedback and set them on a path to success.

4. Follow the rules.

If you are in the position to make or enforce rules, don’t break them yourself. Doing so will only make your sisters resent you for not following rules they have to abide by, and can even get you in trouble. Lead by example and practice what you preach.

5. Apologize.

We are all human, and as much as we may try to be perfect, mistakes will be made. When this happens, be honest and apologize for them instead of making excuses, or worse, placing the blame on someone else. Your sisters will understand if you are transparent with them. Owning up to your mistakes is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Being a role model to others is one of the greatest and most fulfilling positions a person can have and living up to their expectations will be beneficial to all parties involved. It is not a chore, but a gift.

Katrina Botell (California-Santa Barbara): Katrina is a recent college graduate from the University of California, Santa Barbara where she studied psychology and English. She became a member of Gamma Phi Beta as a transfer student in 2015 and served as a member of the social committee before gaining the position of new member social chair. In addition, she served as editor at UCSB's Focus Media Journal. Katrina currently resides in Sacramento, California and in her free time enjoys reading, writing, crafting and hiking.