Sigma Sigma Sigma finds home on Fraternity Circle

Heather Thomas

Although Sigma Sigma Sigma has been at Kent State since 1925 and is the oldest sorority on campus, the members have not had a permanent residence for the last 19 years.

After living in four different undersized, off-campus houses and holding chapter meetings in the student center, the sorority has found a place to call “home” on Fraternity Circle.

“It gives us a home, a base to go to,” said Sigma Sigma Sigma President Megan Liddle. “I think it will strengthen our sisterhood a lot more.”

Five years ago the sorority bought the lot from Theta Chi fraternity, and since then they’ve formed a housing corporation to organize the building plans.

They’ve worked with an architect for the past two years to customize the house, and the groundbreaking began on April 17 during the sorority’s founders’ day weekend.

“We had to be renters because there were no available houses to purchase in town that were zoned for Greek housing,” said Abby Snowberger, president of the sorority’s housing corporation. “We wanted [to buy or build] a good house for living in, recruitment, studying, hanging out, cooking and all that stuff.”

Members of the sorority gave the housing corporation wish lists of what they wanted in the house’s design, and between the girls, alumni and advisors, a blueprint was created.

Winnie Warner, the sorority’s chapter advisor, said they needed to make sure they raised enough money, had their plans in place and coordinated with the bank before they could start building.

“I’m excited for the sorority to finally be homeowners,” Snowberger said. “We’ve been sinking so much money into rental properties that I think it will make life easier to be homeowners.”

When the house is completed in Fall 2010, 16 girls will move in and make use of the new amenities like the proposed 34-space parking lot, fire pit and affordable rent.

The new house is expected to bring many changes to the sorority and Dawn Burngasser, informal recruitment and public relations chair, said it will help with recruitment, meeting at a central location and improving the sorority’s image.

“I think it will make us more connected with the fraternities and sororities on Fraternity Circle,” said Liddle, a junior public health major. “It will be easier to have events because everyone will be in the same area.”

Burngasser, a junior advertising major, said the girls have been anticipating the new house and it is the topic of many conversations.

“Everyone’s excited about getting ready for events together, having events at the house, living near the Rec Center, having a place to go between classes,” Burngasser said. “There are so many things that people are really excited about.”

Members of the sorority are looking forward to having a house with their letters on it, and Warner, who has been the chapter advisor for 17 years, said girls have been asking her for a house for years, and she was excited to finally be able to say, “yes.”

“This has been a dream for us for a really long time, not just the last two years,” Warner said. “We’re doing it. That for me is really thrilling because it’s been a long time coming.”

Contact Greek life reporter Heather Thomas at [email protected].