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Black fraternities and sororities have a long and rich history of fighting for the right to vote and promoting the democratic process in the United States and that legacy continues until today.

In this spirit of fighting to have our voices heard, the Black fraternities and sororities at Virginia Commonwealth University teamed up to create a video about why they think people should vote, especially during this 2016 election.

The video features Alphas, Kappas, Omegas, Deltas, Zetas, Sigmas and SGRhos from the school.

Check out their video below:

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These AKAs Celebrated Their 25th Line Anniversary in Costa Rica and Gave Back To The Community at the Same Time

International line and chapter trips are becoming a big trend in Black greekdom but these women of Alpha Kappa Alpha are doing something that a lot of other trips are missing — community service.

The ladies of who were initiated through Gamma Kappa Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. at Tuskegee University in the Spring of 1992 recently celebrated their 25th AKAversary in Costa Rica.

Twenty-two of their 34 line sisters were able to make the trip and while they got to experience the Pura Vida and do an AMAZING line photoshoot, they also kept up their sorority’s mission and gave back to the community where they were having fun.

The ladies showed up at a local library and dropped off school supplies and books for kids.

“We always take time to celebrate each other and do our part to improve the community where celebrate,” LaTarsha Mills-McKie told Watch The Yard.

This may be a small act but it means a lot and is something that every Black fraternity and sorority line, chapter or group of brothers/sisters should do when they travel or road trip — show up with something in hand to improve the community.

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An Introverts Guide to Networking – Six Simple Steps

The following was written by author, speaker and social entrepreneur Keisha Mabry, a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Sorority Inc.

Hey, Friends. Let me start by first clearing the air. Yes. I am clearing the air and going on record to say — clears throat — NO ONE LIKES TO NETWORK! And I do mean no one. No one and nobody likes to do this because networking is a business card exchange, it’s transactional, it’s take-take-take, it’s quantity not quality and it’s cold and surface. So whether you are an extrovert or an introvert—no one likes to network.

So now that we are on the same page, let me continue by saying that this is not a guide to networking. I know I kind of lied to get you to read this, but if I were to title this article the introvert’s guide to connecting you would be confused. Very, very confused because no one refers to networking as connecting. No one and no body. Everyone refers to it as networking but there’s a difference. A BIG difference.

Connecting is story sharing, it’s people caring, it’s relational and reciprocal, it’s give-give-give, it’s quality not quantity, it’s warm and deep and most importantly it’s way different than networking. It’s different and I want you to walk away from this article knowing the difference and knowing that you do not have to be an extrovert like me to connect with peeps. So let’s get ready, let’s get set and let’s connect.

Ps…the tips below are for those wanting to connect and build genuine, authentic relationships with people not those wanting to network for the sake of using people When you connect and build your network prior to needing people your network and support system will be there when you are in need. Capisce?

 

  1. Have One-on-Ones. Often times extroverts, like me, are led to believe that introverts don’t like to connect and meet peeps – but they do. They just tend to prefer to do this one-on-one and not in groups. So my advice to you is to connect one-on-one. Meet people for coffee, lunch, dinner or brunch to chit and chat. Matter of fact, I do this all the time – like weekly – and it’s fairly easy. I start with the people I know, professionally and personally, and then I ask the people I know to recommend other folk. And just like that my connections grow and grow and grow. Now I am up to grabbing coffee or tea with one new person a week. So try it and see and meet, meet, meet.
  2. Volunteering is a great way to connect with people, and when I say volunteer I don’t just mean what you typically hear when you hear the word volunteer. When most people hear volunteer they think nonprofit and philanthropic—and although they could always use our time, talents and treasures—there’s plenty of other organizations and associations that could use these things too. There’s boards, camps, clubs, churches, clients, cohorts, colleges, committees, conferences, events, family, friends, fellowships, fraternities, sororities, hobbies, masterminds, military, professional, sports, travel and work groups to name a few. And there are so many things you can volunteer to do. You can volunteer to take the lead on something or volunteer to do the thing no one else wants to do. This will give you quick exposure too and another opportunity to meet folks that are new.
  3. Mentor and be Mentored. When people hear the word mentor, they get scared. Not because they don’t care but because of the time they have to spare. Mentor has become synonymous with time commitment and for this reason, many people are starting to resent it. But mentorship can be whatever two peeps decide it should be. It can be a check-in here or a cup of coffee there. It can be a weekly, monthly or even quarterly frequency. Again, it can be anything two peeps decide it should be. So call it something else if you want, pick your frequency and get to mentoring. You can mentor someone you know or someone new and you can even mentor someone that works with you. And while mentoring, you should be mentored too. So just do it. No more excuses and no more shooting mentorship the deuces. Just do it.
  4. Become a SME. It’s important to note that connecting isn’t always about you being proactive to meet peeps—connecting is also about you creating opportunities for folks to meet thee. And one way to do that is to become a SME. A SME is a subject matter expert and it’s something you should strive to be. Being a SME is a great way to meet peeps because when you are a SME people seek you out for your expertise. I’ve always been known for my connecting and socializing expertise, so when people seek resources, places to be and people to see—they seek me. What subject, what matter and what expertise can you share with the world? Coaching, investing, exercising, training—the list goes on and on and on. So identify it, certify it and don’t be quiet about it because the more you spread the news the more you will be introduced.
  5. Drop A Line. Make a new friend by dropping a line from time to time. I drop lines when people get promotions, when people get awards, when people graduate, when people join boards, when people get married and when people expand their family. If I don’t personally know the person, I drop lines via social media. If I personally know the person, I drop lines via email, text, phone calls, cards and sticky notes. But regardless of the medium, the message is always the same—congrats on such and such. And like dropping lines, you should also drop knowledge from time to time, like articles, resources, information and sources, because everyone has goals they are trying to reach and you can meet new peeps by helping them achieve.
  6. Be A Connector. Be a connector. Be a person that introduces people to other people. A person that introduces others to others that others should meet, and sooner than later people will return the favor. That’s it. This way is that simple and that quick.

Well, introverted friends, we have come to the end, BUT there’s a lot more where the above came from in my new book Hey Friend: 100 Ways to Connect with 100 People in 100 Days. It’s a must-read, a fun read and the ultimate guide to meeting peeps. Much luck on your connection journeys and don’t take it too seriously. Navigating an extroverted world as an introvert may sound like a lot but it can be done. Just breath, relax and have some fun!

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About Keisha Mabry: Keisha Mabry is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. She is also an author, speaker and social entrepreneur on a mission to change the world one connection at a time by changing trajectories and changing minds. Her new book Hey Friend: 100 Ways to Connect with 100 People in 100 Days is a movement to make the world friendly again or at the very least friendlier than it’s ever been. It’s a must-read, a fun read and the ultimate guide to meeting new peeps. Learn more about this fearlessly free human being on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and at www.keishamabry.com

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These Two Famous Alpha Kappa Alpha Members Are Getting Their Own Legos

Lego has announced it will soon release a set of minifigures of five pioneering female scientists whose contributions to NASA have largely been underappreciated. Two of these four women just so happen to be members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority! Yes, that is right, your kids will soon be able to play with Black women scientist legos!

The set of female NASA mathematicians and space scientists includes Katherine Johnson, 98, who is best known for calculating and verifying trajectories for the Mercury and Apollo programs and was recently celebrated in the Oscar-winning film Hidden Figures where she was played by Taraji P. Henson.

Johnson has co-authored 26 scientific papers and in 2015 President Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She is a Diamond member of Alpha Kappa Alpha.

The astronaut and physician Dr. Mae Jemison, 60, who became the first African-American woman in space in a 1992 mission aboard the space shuttle Endeavour will also receive her own lego character.

Fun Fact: In true Alpha Kappa Alpha spirit, she carried an Alpha Kappa Alpha banner with her into space with her personal belongings. We’re pretty certain that Lego won’t include that as an accessory but there is no doubt that someone will craft on themselves.

The others characters are:

  • computer scientist Margaret Hamilton, 80, who worked on the onboard flight software for the Apollo missions
  • astronomer Nancy Grace Roman, 91, known as the “Mother of Hubble” for her role in planning the Hubble Space Telescope
  • the late Sally Ride, the first American woman in space in 1983

Lego has approved the minifigures and is currently in development to have this released at a date that has not been yet announced.

We are sure that this set of Legos is going to fly off the shelves! With all of the parents of Black children who are paying extra attention to STEM educations as well as all of the lovely women of AKA out there who are amazing mentors and mothers, you are definitely going to want to get a pre-order because these are guaranteed to sell!

Click here to read the full story on Dr. Jemison.

Click here to read the full story on Johnson.

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