Kicking up the dust with Make – A – Wish

Danielle Campbell Copy-Editor

After a round of everyone’s highs and lows of the day, the philanthropy chair of Omega Zeta Pi sorority, a local organization founded at the university in 2004, gave a PowerPoint presentation. Sisters and a few prospective sponsors to the organization filled the room, listening intently to the presentation on Make a Wish.  

The presenter was business administration major Alexandra Baptie, a senior, who had an intimate relationship with the Make-A-Wish foundation.  

“They connected my family after everything went well with my surgery,” said Baptie, “and then before I started radiation, they actually gave me permission, like the hospital I think, to travel and to go where I wanted to for my Make A Wish. And since it was just Florida, I got approved.” 

Baptie had a rare bone cancer, Ewing Sarcoma, as a child and that experience is what allowed her and her family to have a wish granted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The connection to the foundation is what drew her into the philanthropy chair role in Omega Zeta Pi.  

“I feel like I could bring a different aspect to the philanthropy in a sense because I have a perspective and people don’t really have perspectives on what happens, what’s the process you have and the people who actually give you the wish and stuff,” said Baptie.  

The event was part of the Omega Zeta Pi recruitment process, and this particular event was to showcase what the organization was passionate about, which is serving others. The theme for this semester’s series of events is “cowgirl.”  

“I believe this semester our events are about three weeks long. We welcome all to come to our events. Really want to get to know people and make connections and let everybody kinda know us and what we stand for. What our organization is about,” said Kaitlyn Moore-Markey, recruitment chair, junior, elementary education major. 

The Kick Up the Dust with Make-A-Wish is the second of many events of the semester to introduce the campus and potential sisters to the organization. 

“I went to a different Greek tent first but then I saw pink cowgirl hats, so I was like I have to go over there. And then they started telling me about Make-A-Wish. And I had a friend who had a wish granted for her. So, that was a big thing for me that they did something for Make-A-Wish,” said Sydney Anderson, sophomore, elementary education major.  

After the presentation, the group gathered to get materials to make bracelets and cards for sick children to encourage them in their hard times. This showed the prospects in the room that the organization wastes no time getting their philanthropy started and including them in it.  

“I thought this was just gonna be like they talk to us (about) what we would be doing if we were in with the sisters in the sorority, but I like that we’re actually doing things right now for it, even though we’re not technically in it yet,” said Anderson.  

The group filled a table with these cards of encouragement and bracelets with motivating words on them. The sisters had been sitting between prospective sisters to learn more about them and answer questions about the organization.  

“When I went to Meet the Greeks, I did the breakout room with them, and then that’s how I just kinda knew right away that this feels like it’s a fit for me,” said Olivia Carter, sophomore, special education major. 

The Omega Zeta Pi mission statement says they “strive for academic excellence, sisterhood development, Greek unity, community involvement, and leadership.” 

“We really want to build our community, get our voices out there and really build an empowering group of women,” said Moore-Markey.  

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