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The Life & Times of MTM - the first virtual alum club of Alpha Chi Omega

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August 11th, 2005


amzmtm
01:08 pm - Our July 2005 activities
Our summer 2005 newsletter was completed and mailed out – thank you to our PR Guru, Heather ZU ’93!!

Thank you to Candice and Liz for the photo and caption from the July 8th all-AXO picnic at the house; and to Karen ZU ’98 of the photo of her and her big sister Cat ZU ’98 at the Chicago wedding of a Case classmate.

We announced MTM’s new public website to our members. http://axomtm.squarespace.com

The chapter had an extra piano at the house so we advertised one for sale to our members.

An update on MTM was published in the summer issue of The Lyre as well as a mention of Sarah ZU ‘95’s wedding.

Dues billing was sent out via email by CIAO. Thank you Alison!

The book club discussed its fourth selection The Time Traveler’s Wife July 26th.

The collegiate chapter invited us to a Welcome Back BBQ at the House August 27th.

We announced three Alpha Chi Omega job openings (house director at Alpha chapter, resident consultant for the University of San Diego chapter, and Leadership Mentor for the Northeast) and posted job descriptions on the private site.

Heather, the ZU Chapter Advisor, sent an update on the house, including the hiring of a new house director and cook and details of renovations underway this summer. She also announced she has a co-chapter advisor Amy. Welcome, Amy & thank you, Heather!

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amzmtm
01:01 pm - Our June 2005 activities
The academic year was winding down but the philanthropy committee was working overtime.

Race for the Cure
We unveiled our plans to participate nationwide in the Susan J. Komen Race for the Cure this year and learned that not 2 but 3 of our members were out representing us June 4th - Leila and Nikki in the National Race for the Cure in Washington DC as part of the Alpha Chis for Alice team and Christine in the Madison, WI Race for the Cure. Thank you Leila, Nikki and Christine for the photos and reports!

We updated the "Other Projects" philanthropy page to be specifically about the Race for the Cure, and encouraged our members to see when their local events are and sign up.

DVA website pages
We expanded the philanthropy section on our website to include a number of ways to provide support to domestic violence shelters and survivors, including 60 Seconds for DVA (help you can provide in 1 minute!), Shop for DVA and Music for DVA. http://axomtm.squarespace.com/dva-projects/

We shared the lovely flash presentation created by Alpha Chi Omega Foundation in honor of the Symphony with all our members https://ssl9.chi.us.securedata.net/pursuant2.com/alphachiomega/axoselect/flashstory.asp?tpgid=0&sn=1

We congratulated Lisa ZU ’86 and Carole ZU ’88 on their engagements; Lynette ZU ’88 and her family on their impending move to Cleveland; and Victoria ZU ‘01 on her graduation summa cum laude from Temple University.

We congratulated Beckie ZU ‘98 on the birth of her son, Jen ZU ’95 on the birth of her daughter and Lynn ZU ’93 on the birth her son; and thanked them all for the photos as well as Summyr ZU ’84 for the photos of her daughter.

The collegiates invited us all to an all-AXO picnic at the House July 8th.

And for the second time in 3 months an Alpha Chi was featured in the Alum news e-newsletter distributed by the Case Office of Alumni Affairs. This time Rahila ZU ’95 was pictured.

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amzmtm
11:04 am - Our May 2005 activities
Greek Week in April prompted a flurry of postings of old Greek Week memorabilia as we tried to remember Variety Show themes and songs we used years ago. Among the postings – AXO variety show lyrics from 1987 and 1989; names of songs and themes used pretty much from 1983 through the 1990s; and various fraternity variety show lyrics from the 80s (Pikes, Sigma Nu and Sammies 1986).

On May 13th we received in the mail our official certification as an alumnae chapter, signed by the National President. We scanned it and posted it to the private site. We are really official!!

We celebrated Case’s very large incoming freshman class for 2005-06 and mourned the passing May 14th of Dr. Ignacio Ocasio a beloved chemistry professor who was famous in part for memorizing the names of everyone in each freshman class and in part for his energy in the classroom and the quality of instruction he provided.

We introduced all the graduating seniors on our private site with a photo of each and a brief bio.

We set up our new public website http://axomtm.squarespace.com and started adding features.

The book club discussed its third selection Like Water for Chocolate May 25th.

And we congratulated Michele ZU ’85 for her Congressional testimony given May 24th before the United States House Judiciary Committee!

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May 15th, 2005


amzmtm
01:06 pm - our April 2005 MTM activities
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month so we kicked off the month with a posting http://www.livejournal.com/community/mtm_axo/7126.html that took on a life of its own and ended up being cross-posted on a number of communities and individual user blogs. I was really pleased the message had a positive impact.

Greek Week at Case was the first weekend in April – we sent individual good luck emails to the chapter, posted old photos and old variety show lyrics on our private site, then said Hurrah when AXO took 2nd place!! It was great seeing photos from this year’s events – thank you Kristina for help with the captions!

Heather (our PR guru) and I had a phone chat to map out the MTM summer newsletter.

We hatched a plan to match up our ZU full-time graduate students with MTM members who could send them good luck notes and care packages during finals week. Since finals time runs from late April through mid-June (many schools are represented, Arizona State University, Boston University, Stanford, UC-San Diego, Northwestern, University of Cincinnati, Case, SUNY-Stony Brook, Columbia, Brooklyn College, Georgetown, Rochester, MIT, Vanderbilt, and the University of North Carolina) we don’t know how the project is working out yet but hopefully it will be a success! It would be great to expand it to include the part-time students, since their lives are especially busy, working and going to school at the same time. This effort is part of our greater goal of supporting the academic achievements and endeavors of our sisters.

Nikki posted a poll about instant messenger platforms – which we use – to help us figure out the best and easiest chat rooms to meet in.

We welcomed the seniors as new alums – inviting them (the evening of their Hall of Commitment ceremony) to our private site at myfamily.com and sending each one an e-booklet to help with the transition from their collegiate years to the rest of their lives. A summary of that booklet is posted http://www.livejournal.com/users/amzmtm/4023.html. We also posted a list of all the new alums’ names and addresses on the private site and hope to have photos and bios to share soon as a means of introducing our newest alums to the rest of the group.

Christine Gosen, a ZU senior, was featured in April’s monthly Case alumni e-newsletter http://www.case.edu/alumni/news/alumnews.html - a great article with a photo and mention of her Alpha Chi Omega activities! Congratulations, Christine!

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April 22nd, 2005


amzmtm
08:58 pm - March 2005 activities
*We celebrated Hera Day 3/1, Alpha Chi Omega’s National Day of Service to Others http://www.livejournal.com/community/mtm_axo/6422.html

*Nikki launched the book club blog 3/1 http://mtmaxobookclub.blogspot.com/

*Leila compiled a brief history of all the places Zeta Upsilon chapter has called home – at the request of the New Member Educator - to share with the new members (a copy is posted on the private site).

*We celebrated International Badge Day 3/7 http://www.npcwomen.org with a post on our site and some interesting information from Vicky Harrison, Alpha Chi Omega’s National Archivist:

“The stones in our pin must be diamonds or pearls and there must be at least three (each upper outer corner and the center just below the scroll. In the beginning, the badges were member choice on size, how many stones, and what kinds. In 1906, an official die was ordered and the standard size as we know it was adopted. No reason for the 22 pearls. They just fit the design.

There are no rules governing placement of guard, accompanying fraternity pins, etc., but you will usually see the dangles and guards lower.

The new member stickpin was designed so the badge could be added to it at 2nd degree. It was an effort to get rid of the pledge (inferior person) concept. So instead of giving up your pledge pin after you earned your badge, you instead receive the first part and then the second part.

Neal Armstrong's first wife is an Alpha Chi from Purdue. We did have them in a Lyre article once, but there is no lyre badge on the moon. There is no badge in the Smithsonian. At one time, the jeweler ran the "prettiest badge" contest. The lyre supposedly won and the story started that it was on display in the Smithsonian. [2 big myths dispelled there!!]”


*We celebrated International Women’s Day 3/8 with a quiz from http://www.internationalwomensday.com/

*3/16 Karen posted a stack of photos from 1998-2000

*3/19 we were invited to attend AXO Formal to be held 4/1 at the Cleveland Athletic Club.

*3/28 our first book chat – it did not go perfectly (same issues with chat platforms that we experienced with our exec board meeting in February) but overall it was a good start. We posted the transcript and have open discussion threads on the blog.

*During March, there was also a lot of behind the scenes exec board work – getting projects organized – we found someone to help with our website – then 2 weeks later found out he couldn’t. Nikki talked with the Center for Women staff at Case about working together with them on some projects.

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amzmtm
07:21 pm - February 2005 activities
We welcomed the newest members of ZU with a photo posted on the (private) website. Of course everyone wanted to know how Recruitment went!!

We celebrated MacDowell Month, Alpha Chi Omega's time to focus nationally on fine arts appreciation. http://www.livejournal.com/community/mtm_axo/2278.html?view=742#t742 is a text copy of the message we sent to our members, to the collegians and posted online.

We sent the new ZU Exec board members gifts to say congratulations and good luck with their offices - cute thermal coffee mugs - perfect for winter in Cleveland. http://www.greekcreations.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=15 The funny thing was the first shipment contained Chi Omega mugs instead of Alpha Chi Omega ones. Fortunately Greek Creations corrected their mistake!!

We launched this blog!

And most importantly, we had our first MTM Exec Board meeting via chat. It took us awhile to get started - clients did not work as predicted (or if we could have predicted, we might have seen that Murphy's Law was after us - whatever could go wrong did go wrong!). The chat feature on myfamily.com uses a java console that wouldn't load for everyone so we went to AOL IM but not everyone had IM set up. We ended up on MSN IM and from there out things went beautifully and we got a lot accomplished - many plans set into motion and lots of ideas off the drawing board and into implementation. The transcript was 18 pages long! Among our long-range goals - setting up an e-card feature on our website with cards specifically targeted to AXO and ZU/Case, holding a contest with prizes to the sister who created the best graphics and flash files to use as e-cards, revamping our website to manage the e-card feature, publishing a newsletter over the summer, making some purchases requested by the spirit chair at ZU and the chapter president, new member gifts for the newbies at ZU (along with an introduction to MTM http://www.catholicsupply.com/christmas/19410.html), getting the fundraising committee going (lots of brainstorming about who might be able to participate), and providing long-distance support for the advisory board. It will probably take us awhile to implement some of these things but it was exciting to talk things out and get some of the plans sketched out in more detail! Thank you to Leila, Nikki, Heather and Erin who "attended" the meeting and Karen, Lisa and Jen who read the transcript and sent their comments in afterward.

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April 1st, 2005


amzmtm
09:45 am - April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month
As you know, one of Alpha Chi Omega's National Philanthropies is Domestic Violence Awareness.

Sexual assault unfortunately often goes hand-in-hand with domestic violence. To better educate ourselves on domestic violence and to protect us, our friends, sisters and families, here are some important things to know about sexual assault.

Statistics

One in four female college students reported they had been the victims of attempted or completed rapes; 80% were victimized by boyfriends, friends or acquaintances. http://www.icasa.org/uploads/adult_victimss.pdf

Women ages 16 to 24 experience rape at rates four times higher than the assault rate of all women http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/mime/open.pdf?Item=269

There is no boundary for who might be raped. Almost 18%, or 17.7 million women, in the United States have been victims of rape or attempted rape sometime in their lives. http://www.icasa.org/uploads/adult_victimss.pdf

Prevention

Being Date Smart http://www.teenpcar.com/girls/default.asp

Don't use alcohol or drugs which can impair your ability to make smart decisions, lower your inhibitions, and render you unconscious, making it easy for someone to force you into a harmful situation. If you're going to drink, enlist the buddy system and NEVER leave your drink unattended.

Be aware. If someone's drunk, aggressive, touching, or pinching you and won't stop, DON'T wind up alone with him.

If you're in a relationship, it's time to get out when:
· He doesn't listen, talks over you, ignores you. He doesn't respect you and might not listen when you say "NO."

· He shows hostile feelings or has a demeaning attitude toward women.

· He does what he wants, regardless of your opinions. If he always has to be in control, deciding where you go, what you wear and who you see, he may take control when it comes to sex - regardless of what you want.

· He acts overly possessive or jealous, all signs of a bad temper, which can lead to violence.

Getting Involved

To find a Sexual Assault Awareness Month event in your area http://www.nsvrc.org/cgi-bin/suite/calendar/calendar.cgi?request=month&website=default&month=4&day=1&year=2005&category_id=121&set=1&session=3ffaf0800d87dab2


Decide to End Sexual Violence – Build Healthy, Respectful Relationships
more links at http://del.icio.us/tag/saam+axo

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March 5th, 2005


amzmtm
10:32 am - January = Recruitment (January 2005)
Recruitment Recruitment Recruitment!!!

Case now holds Formal Recruitment in the winter (there is a history of bouncing back and forth between fall and winter - this year was the 2nd one for winter this go around).

As a club, we emailed all the ZU alums to keep them in the loop. We also posted info about recruitment events, times and attire on our public website. http://axoalummtm.org/rush.html

We sent out a blanket request for alumnae help with a mock recruitment session held on Thursday 1/20.

Because there are 4 local AXO alumnae groups in Cleveland, each one in charge of one of the 4 recruitment events, and because so few of our members live in the Cleveland area, we volunteered to sponsor 2 Sisterhood Events – one Saturday 1/22 and the other Friday 1/28. Thank you to Kelly and Lisa for being the alums in charge at these events! Saturday was pizza night (in the middle of a blizzard) and Friday was snacks and soda/pop – we also sent in old AXO stuff we alums had to share with the collegians – t-shirts, stuffed animals, stickers, etc. – that they used for door prizes that 2nd sisterhood event – and art supplies for making signs and things for the new members.

Our members also mailed cards and notes to the house and sent encouraging emails to the VP-Fraternity Relations to share with all the sisters.

Non-Recruitment related activities

We posted information about AXO Foundation Scholarships – with the forms and deadline. Many of the scholarships awarded go to graduate students so we specifically sent the information and forms to our alums who are in school.

We received a nice thank you from the chapter for the pencils.

And we solicited advice for the new VP-Education from our members specifically those who had held the job previously.

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March 1st, 2005


amzmtm
06:59 am - Happy Hera Day! (March 2005)
Tuesday March 1st is Hera Day, Alpha Chi Omega’s national day of service to others.

Celebrate by doing an act of kindness. It can be as simple as smiling at an acquaintance! Explore more ideas here:

http://www.actsofkindness.org/
http://www.helpothers.org/pif/ideas.html

Remember – when you give to others good comes back to you – in more ways than one. Here are some of the health benefits of kindness:
“Numerous scientific studies show that acts of kindness result in significant health benefits, both physical and mental.” http://www.actsofkindness.org/inspiration/health/detail.asp?
id=2

"The majority of us lead quiet, unheralded lives as we pass through this world. There will most likely be no ticker-tape parades for us, no monuments created in our honor.

But that does not lessen our possible impact, for there are scores of people waiting for someone just like us to come along; people who will appreciate our compassion, our unique talents. Someone who will live a happier life merely because we took the time to share what we had to give.

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have a potential to turn a life around. It's overwhelming to consider the continuous opportunities there are to make our love felt."
Author:Leo Buscagli


"There is a wonderful, mystical law of nature that the three things we crave most in life -- happiness, freedom, and peace of mind -- are always attained by giving them to someone else."
Author:Unknown


[Quotes courtesy of the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation]

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February 28th, 2005


amzmtm
07:22 am - December activities and the Post & Win contest results (Dec 2004)
Despite the fact that we were all busy with our holiday preparations, December was an active month for us.

The collegians elected a new executive board - we thought about what we could do to congratulate them.

We posted a revised version of our alumnae address directory on our private site.

The Post & Win contest turned out to be a good experiment. During the 5 weeks, sisters posted 18 items about themselves. Because it went so well we decided to give 2 runners-up prizes (in addition to our grand prize). Congratulations to the winners – Lynn, our grand prize winner, who posted her new home announcement, and Gretchen & Sheri, our runners-up, who had coincidentally both posted photos of their weddings. They all (also independently) chose gift certificates from amazon.com (the runners-up were offered $10 gift certificates for either blockbuster, the photo finisher of their choice or amazon). Because it went so well, we thought we'd run the contest as an annual event.

The best part of the contest of course was seeing and hearing everyone's news and photos! Also the contest created some great momentum for us - there were lots more postings through the end of December, into January and now! (2/28/05)

Our printed finals week pencils began their journey to Cleveland. What should have been a 2-day priority mail delivery turned out to be over a week, but they did arrive - though most of the sisters did not get to enjoy them until January. Live and learn!!

We welcomed the one ZU senior who graduated in December by posting her photo and a short bio on our private site. Congratulations Jennifer!!

Nikki suggested we start a book club and volunteered to be in charge.

The Winter Lyre (AXO's National quarterly magazine) came out – our article and photo (from the Installation) were included.

And we wished everyone happy holidays and a wonderful new year!

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