In an effort to highlight the young leaders who are leading undergraduate chapters across the nation, we at Watch The Yard reached out to the sorors of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc.’s Mu Phi Chapter at Loyola University Chicago and did an interview with Ngozi Ude the president of the chapter.
The position of president of an undergraduate chapter of a Black sorority is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes. 20-year-old Ude has used the position to gain new leadership experience, improve the lives of other students on campus and help the community around her.
We interviewed the Biology major and talked about her position, goals, future and what it means to hold a leadership on campus in the digital age.
Read the full interview below.
What does it mean to be a chapter president to you?
Being a chapter president means being selfless and hardworking. You must be willing to do a thankless job wholeheartedly. The job is tough but must be done. You must hold yourself accountable as well as other members in the chapter. However, I feel great knowing that I am playing a very active role in my chapter’s success. As a charter member of the Mu Phi Chapter, I love being able to directly impact my chapter and make decisions aimed to help us flourish. I have learned so much in these almost two years serving as chapter president and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
What made you decide to attend the Loyola University Chicago for undergrad?
I decided to attend Loyola University Chicago because I was offered a full-tuition academic scholarship for my four years here. Also, although my hometown is a couple minutes away from Chicago, I wanted a more immersive experience of a big city. It was a win-win situation.
What specific initiatives is your chapter heading up this year and how do you think they will improve the campus/surrounding community?
One of the initiatives we are heading up entails mentorship of female youth groups through local organizations. Through fellowship with these young ladies at their meetings on the Southside of Chicago and/or on our campus on the Northside of Chicago. we have emphasized the importance of varying topics. These topics include but have not been limited to the importance of education while pursuing what they are passionate about, being a servant to their community/communities, sisterhood, and informing on Black history (ex. the Divine Nine).
Through Zeta’s National Initiative, Adopt-A-School, the Mu Phi Chapter has also helped to support our ‘adopted’ grammar school in whichever ways we can similar to that of the local youth group organizations. Unlike Zeta Phi Beta Graduate Chapters, Undergraduate Chapters don’t have the privilege of having youth auxiliaries for practicality. However, the Mu Phi Chapter has and will continue to aim to be proximate to the youth! Our objective is to be a resource to these young ladies while being an example of what it is to be Finer Women. Therefore, by seeing Black collegiate women like ourselves, we hope they become and remain motivated to attain their goals and be assured that their goals are attainable, no matter the circumstance.
Mu Phi Chapter also regularly serves at a local church, participating in their community feast. We get to serve and package meals for people and families in need. We also have a biannual donation drive during our Zeta Week where we encourage all attendees to donate specific items depending on the cause.
What made you want to pledge Zeta Phi Beta?
I wanted to join Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. because I saw and experienced an energy that was so exhilarating and refreshing. Zeta was not on my campus when I arrived at Loyola and I yearned for something different that would change the status quo on campus. Everything I felt and saw regarding Zeta was genuine. I felt at home around Zetas before I even became one. This is also due to the fact that my mother is a Zeta. I grew up having her as one of my role models and I am proud to be her legacy.
What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?
Mu Phi Chapter is unique because we are the first and only NPHC organization to charter and host a chapter on Loyola’s campus. Also, we were chartered on the campus of Loyola University Chicago on April 28th, 2018, making us the newest Greek organization on campus. We have also gotten great feedback from our campus. People see how we actually do work and have events on campus. We have introduced a new definition of “community” on campus. We get to set the standard, as we are the first ones here. We literally run the yard.
We now live in a digital world, what do you think undergraduate chapters across all orgs need to do to represent themselves online in 2019?
Undergraduate chapters must protect their brand. We are not only representing our chapter online but our organizations as a whole. It is very easy to post things flippantly, however, we must be intentional with everything we put on social media. This applies to our chapter platforms and personal platforms. On a brighter note, we must take advantage of this digital age. Being that it is very convenient to distribute information to the public, we must constantly refine our marketing techniques so our chapters are getting the most out of our platforms.
What does leadership mean to you?
Leadership means being able to share the stage with others. I have never seen a successful leader by his or her lonesome. True leaders are surrounded by other leaders. Leadership means having a support system. Leadership means being able to correct your mistakes and admit when you are wrong. Leadership is taking suggestions from others. Leadership is guiding different people to one common goal.
Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?
Watch the Yard is important to Black greekdom because every organization is represented equally in a positive light. This platform highlights Black excellence daily. I frequently am amazed at the historic pictures that are posted of the Divine Nine. It really makes me think and reflect on each of our organizations’ roots and why we were founded. I also appreciate how Watch the Yard is not afraid to call out ignorance online. Everything this platform does is to help the positive legacy of the Divine Nine carry on.
What does sisterhood mean to you?
Sisterhood means having someone by your side that you can call on at any time. Sisterhood means knowing that you can correct that person and that they can also correct you. Sisterhood is pushing your sister to be her best and only her best. Sisterhood is agreeing to disagree. Sisterhood is laughter, tears, and more laughter. Sisterhood is a lifelong bond that cannot be easily shaken.
What do you plan on doing after graduation?
My after-graduation plans include continuing on to graduate school through a 5-year plan here at Loyola University Chicago where I will receive my Masters in Business Administration in one year. I then plan to attend pharmacy school, gain my Doctorate in Pharmacy and work in a hospital setting. I also plan on joining a graduate chapter.
We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Ngozi Ude for her work as the president of Mu Phi Chapter.