spotlight on extracurriculars: on stage and on the track

Sisters in our Theta chapter are involved in diverse groups on and off campus. Our sisters make time to be involved members of Theta and chase after their pursuits because they love doing both! It wouldn’t be possible without the support of our sisters in encouraging the talents and aspirations of each other. We wanted to highlight a few of our involved members from our Pledge Class, PC ‘18, and what’s it is like to be so committed to something in addition to being in Theta.

Gianna Raimo, Barnard ‘21- Orchesis

“I am a choreographer and a board member of Orchesis, and was just appointed Chair of Orchesis for the 2019 year! This is my third semester being in Orchesis, and I’ve been in three pieces every semester. This semester is my first time choreographing my first dance, a jazz piece, and I’m really excited about that. I’m also a part of the Mama Project, a satellite group of Orchesis. Mama Project is where one student choreographer a year does one show a year, and I’m a part of that cast. Orchesis has been a really great way for me to continue dancing in college.

Both Theta and Orchesis were the best decisions I’ve made so far in college. I sometimes have to prioritize one over the other, but I’m not always busy for both. I definitely have to time-manage though!

When I first joined Theta, I didn’t tell anyone about my upcoming performance (I kind of forgot!), but my grandbig, Holly, and a ton of other Theta’s were sitting in the audience cheering me on, and when I came out after, they all congratulated me and gave me a big hug. I didn’t expect anyone to come—I didn’t even have to ask—it’s just something they wanted to do! This semester people have already started reaching out to me to come to the performances. It just shows that the people who are in Theta genuinely go out of there way to support you and make you feel comfortable in things that are not Theta specific. Even though I met them in Theta, their support has expanded far outside the Theta community. They’ve made me feel a part of the Theta community in things that are not even Theta specific!”

Serena Tripodi, Columbia College ‘21- Columbia Cross Country and Track

“Being a member of the cross country and track teams are probably what I am most involved in because of how much time and energy our training entails. I am considered a long distance (or long d) runner on the team, so I get up to 70 miles/week when I'm in my toughest training phases. We race for 6 kilometers in cross country, and then in track I primarily race the distance events, so the 3k and the 5k, however, I’m planning to move up to the 10k this year! A few other things I'm involved in that most people do not know is that I am a member of the Columbia Art Business Association (CABA) and volunteer for Crisis Text Line, a global non-profit organization that provides free crisis intervention to whomever may need it. I volunteer about 4 hours/ week and it's incredibly powerful to know that you're making a difference in a complete stranger's life.

It has definitely been a challenge balancing these commitments while also being a member of Theta, but I am very selective with the organizations that I choose to be a part of, and it's all of the amazing people I've met along the way that make it enjoyable and completely 100% worth it.

My sisters have been nothing short of incredible in supporting me throughout my running career. My roommate Kim Khaledi has been fueling me with Milano's cake on several occasions, and I have gotten many wishes and congratulations from sisters I didn't think even knew I ran. Theta has really been such a glorious light in my life and introduced me to incredible women who I may not have gotten the opportunity to know otherwise.”