Zeta Alpha

Zeta Alpha Chapter was founded at Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts on February 16, 1980.

Founding Date: Feb 16th, 1980

Status: Active



District: Rho

Establishment of Zeta Alpha

On Thursday Sept 13, 1979 Kappa Kappa Gamma colonized its 104th chapter, Zeta Alpha, at Babson College in Wellesley Mass. Marjorie Matson Converse - Gamma Delta, Purdue, Chairman of Extension, presided at the colonization ceremony as 13 Babson undergraduates pledged Kappa! The entire event was quite exciting as the girls had petitioned Kappa the prior spring in hopes of obtaining permission to colonize, and for each of them that day had finally arrived.

Many Kappas in the New England area helped prepare and participate in the colonization of Zeta Alpha. Over 21 members of Delta Nu chapter at the University of Massachusetts arrived on Thursday evening to serve as big sisters to the members of the new colony. Both Judy Preston, Rho Province Director of Chapters and Patty Gesell, Rho Province director of Alumnae were present for the event. The Boston Intercollegiate Alumni Association had a great turnout and hosted a reception following the ceremony

Kappa was the second NPC Sorority on campus, preceded by Sigma Kappa. Babson College was founded in 1919 but did not accept women until 1970. The women number 300 out of a total school enrollment of 1250.

The charter members are: Elisabeth Andersen; Celia Bumstead; Susan Connell; Amy Fairclough; Elizabeth Gregory; Carol Hasenfus ; Kathleen Hogan; Helen Joy; ·Kathleen Lopas; Diane Magee; Catherine Mannix; Jane Mason; Karen Myjak ; Sybil Neidecker; Dolores Paino; Linda Powers; Gail Prescott; Gretchen Schwabe; Deirdre Sisk; Pamela Will

Installation of Zeta Alpha

On the morning of Saturday, February 16, Boston area Kappas woke to grey skies and snow-filled driveways. Until then, the winter of 1980 had virtually been snow-free in New England. Fifteen miles west of Boston, the town of Wellesley was blanketed in snow by the time all the Kappas arrived for the installation of Zeta Alpha Chapter at Babson College.

Babson is a small, independent co-ed college of management located on a wooded 450-acre campus, a few miles from Wellesley Square. The college was founded in 1919 by financier Roger W. Babson and enrolls 1330 full-time undergraduates and 1535 graduate students, of which one quarter are women.

The setting for the installation was the Wellesley Congregational Church, as steeped in history as the town of Wellesley itself, which will celebrate its centennial next year.

The church today is the fourth to stand on the present site. On June 23, 1774, nearly a year before the first battle of the Revolutionary War and the battles of Lexington and Concord, the first meeting house was begun, but, because of the war, not completed until 1798. In 1835, a second church was dedicated, its white steeple dominating Wellesley Square until 1871, when it was purchased by Mr. Charles Dana and moved to his property in Wellesley, where it later became the first building of the Dana Hall School for Girls. The third church, dedicated in 1872, was destroyed in a spectacular fire on December 30, 1916. Less than two years later, the Parish House of the present church was completed, and in 1923 the present church was dedicated.

Registration was held on Friday afternoon across the street from the church in the lobby of The Wellesley Inn, which once served as a boarding house for Wellesley College students in the early 1900's. Registration and hospitality was headed by Joan Gill Craig, BZ -Iowa. Helping her at Friday's registration was Anne Chapman Booth, BI - Swarthmore and Daisy Davenport Temby, Σ- Nebraska. Handling the finances was Joan Davis Dimond, ΔΔ - McGill.

The weekend activities started Friday evening with the FS Service being held in Wellesley Hills at the lovely home of Margaret Taylor Daggett, ΠΔ - U of California at Berkeley. After the quiet ritual of Fireside, Kappa alumnae gathered around the punch bowl and had an opportunity to become acquainted with the members of Zeta Alpha colony.

On Saturday morning, Kappas trudged through newly-fallen snow into the Parish House of the Wellesley Congregational Church for the Installation Service. Dinnie Texter Callahan, BM - Colorado, had driven from Headquarters in the blue and blue van, bringing with her all the necessary equipment to set the stage for a memorable ceremony. Assisting her were Ann Ritter Johnston, ΓN - Arkansas, Mary Lou Speery Kruse, ΔM - U-Conn, Connie Adler Engle, ΔA- Pennsylvania, Jane Terrell Berry, BBΔ - St. Lawrence, and Pam Price Botts, Θ - Missouri, who was in charge of properties. Leslie Zittell Jose, BBΔ - St. Lawrence, ably assisted by Jean White Lamb, BΔ - Michigan, had taken care of every last detail in the dressing rooms.

For Ann Johnston, Installation Chairman, and Mary Lou Kruse, Vice-chairman, the Service was the culmination of months of planning and work since the chapter's colonization last fall. They received support every step of the way from the members of the Boston Intercollegiate Alumnae Association, many of whom served on the Installation Committees.

The installing officers were Jean Hess Wells, 6. ΔY- Georgia, Fraternity president, Sally Moore Nitschke, BN - Ohio State, director of chapters, Wilma Winberg Johnson, ΔN - U-Mass, Boston Intercollegiate president, Judith Farnham Preston, Φ - Boston U, Rho province director of chapters, Patricia Coffee Gesell, ΔA - Penn State, Rho province director of alumnae, and Corinne Mani, ΔB – Duke, Zeta Alpha graduate counselor. Also taking part in the Installation Service were Chapter Presidents from Rho province Kay Huffman, ΔM - U-Conn, Alison Kenney, ΔN - U-Mass, and Kirk Evilith, EX - Dartmouth. Serving as Pages were Barbara Laitner, BM - Colorado, field secretary; Jane Brock. ΓΔ - Purdue; Suzanne Morgan, BY - W. Virginia; and Carolyn Bodie, EΣ - Virginia.

Sorely missed was Marjorie Mat on Converse, ΓΔ – Purdue, extension chairman, who was recuperating from an accident and unable to make the trip to Boston. It was due to her continuing guidance of these 20 girls at Babson, that Zeta Alpha Chapter exists today. Following the Installation Service, the new initiates and their Delta Nu Big Sisters, gathered in the church parlor for an informal lunch of sandwiches, chips and Coke. Giving Joan Crain a helping hand with lunch and Saturday registration was Susan Huston Lakin, ΔA - Penn State. After catching their breath, the Zeta Alphas conducted their first pledge ceremony for six super pledges - Corinne Collins, Katheryn Gilchrist, Stacey Holmes, Deborah Kory, Jennifer Spalt, and Jane Stasikelis. It was an exciting moment for Dolores Paino, Zeta Alpha President, assisted by Carol Hasenfus, Pledge Chairman and Karen Myjak, Marshall.

With a snowblower keeping the church walkway clear, Kappas quickly reached their cars and attended a reception on the Babson College campus in contemporary Trim Hall. Fran Wilson Hartwell, ΔM - U-Conn, was in charge of this event which drew a crowd of alumnae, parents and friends, coming together to welcome Kappa Kappa Gamma to the Babson campus. Doing the honors at the punch bowl were Carolyn Bodie and Jane Brock. As shadows fell on the snow-covered Babson campus, Kappas hurried back to their dorms and homes to get ready for the Installation Banquet, held at the popular Marriott Hotel in Newton. A lovely setting and delicious dinner was arranged by Banquet Chairman Joy Barron Babcock, Φ - Boston U, and her committee: Kathleen Raynor. ΨΔ – Cornell; Edie Crouse Hawkridge, ΓΞ - UCLA; Jan Long Welty, ΔZ - Colorado College; Betsy Roberts Sands, BBΔ - St. Lawrence; Elinor Reynolds Hanley, BΦ - Montana; Jeanne Mill ΔΦ – Bucknell; Jane Brock; Ann Booth; and Daisy Temby. Sally Nitschke got the evening off to a great start as Toastmistress, taking the place of Ruth Hohele Lane, Φ – Boston U, former director of chapters, who was unable to attend.

Coordinator of Student Activities at Babson College Mary Dunn, in welcoming the new chapter, offered them challenges: One was a challenge to be different – “To resist the pressure to follow old ways, to conform to the norm.” “I would also challenge you to work toward a actualizing the goals and ideals of our Kappa Chapter,” she said. Then one hundred and forty glasses were raised as Alison Kenney Delta Nu President gave a toast to Zeta Alpha Chapter.

Wilma Johnson read letters and telegrams of greetings from chapters and alumnae groups near and far. The Installation address by Jean Wells carried an inspiring message to all the Kappas present; from those who had worn their key for just a few short hours, to those 50-year Kappas, Ann Booth, Betsy Sands, Daisy Temby and Kay Bailey Hoyt, BN - Ohio State. Kay Hoyt then presented Dolores Paino with the President's Key as a gift from Boston Intercollegiate Alumnae Association. Ann Johnston and Corinne Mani presented each new initiate with a small jewelry box, its cover finished in blue and blue needlepoint, individually monogrammed.

Patty Gesell presented the chapter with many lovely gifts, including a silver Paul Revere bowl from the Alpha Province alums, and silver candlesticks from two Connecticut alumnae groups - New Haven and Fairfield County. From Rho Province came award jewelry from Dartmouth, a handmade banner from U-Conn, and the U-Mass Big Sisters Chapter passed along their gavel.

A most meaningful gift in the name of Beatrice Woodman, Φ - Boston U, was presented by Patty Gesell and Judy Preston as a Chapter Award in the form of a fleur-de-lis pin; to be given annually to that member of Zeta Alpha Chapter who best exemplifies the ideals of Kappa Kappa Gamma Fraternity.

In keeping with tradition, the Banquet was closed with the Candlelight Ceremony, bringing an end to an exciting and memorable day for all Boston Kappas.

On Sunday morning, the new initiates of Zeta Alpha chapter reviewed the ritual and received the chapter archives as Jean Wells and Sally Nitschke conducted the Model Chapter Meeting. And a tinge of excitement from the previous day was felt by all present as Dolores Paino, ZA - President, conducted the last part of the meeting. It was hard to believe that these girls' dream for a new Kappa chapter at Babson had in fact come true.

Involvement at Babson College

Established at Babson College in 1980, the Zeta Alpha Chapter pride themselves on their leadership skills, academic focus, philanthropic spirit, and sisterly bonds.

More than half the chapter is not only involved in another organization on campus, but is also an established leader in that organization (ie. President). Zeta Alpha encourages its chapter to be well rounded, multifaceted, and a strong part of the Babson community. Some examples of organizations the chapter is involved in are Babson's Dance Ensemble, AMAN (South Asian student Association), Babson Investment Banking Association, Babson Exchange Ambassadors, Peer Mentors, Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship Mentors, Babson College Admissions Panel, Women's Varsity Volleyball, Women's Varsity Swimming, Babson Cheerleading, Babson Co-ed Volleyball Club, Luxury Fashion Association, Japan International Circle, Hillel, Student Government Association, Babson Asian Pacific Student Association, as well as the prestigious Weissman, Presidential, and Women's Leadership Scholarship Programs.

Highlights of the 1980's

Zeta Alpha was very proud to have the highest GPA on campus. In 1989 they had a 5 member pledge class initiated in February. The pledges did a sheet drive for their philanthropy "the Home for Little Wanders". The chapter raised funds via a raffle to benefit the Armenian Earthquake.

A Greek semi-formal was held in November, and a Spring Formal was held in April.

The chapter sought to build good public relations with the University. To do this they held a Halloween party for the children of the faculty and also spen time at a local nursing home during Christmas.

Highlights of the 1990's

Zeta Alpha Chapter once again won the 'Song Contest' during Greek Week. They celebrated a bit of redecoration in their Tower Wall. In 1990=-91 they initiated 12 new members, while working on philanthropies to aid the homeless and entertain the children of faculty members.

The new members delivered pumpkins to all Greek organizations on campus and hosted TKE pledges for a Mexican Dinner. Additionally the NM's had an off campus retreat.

The chapter worked on Public Relations, wearing their Letters and Pin to show a positive effect while helping host events on campus.

By the mid-90's Zeta Alpha was celebrating 15 years as a chapter. There were 32 sisters and 2 sororities on campus. Kappa co sponsored a Run-Walk for the United Way

By 1997 the chapter had grown to 37 initiated members. The chapter was recognized for Gracious Living by KKG and for Community Service by the Campus Community. The chapter participated in the Annual Walk for Breast Cancer in Boston.

Highlights of the 2000's

In 2005 The 25th Kappa Anniversary celebration was a great success. Our sisters enjoyed conversing with both the young and older alumni of Kappa Kappa Gamma. There were many planned events that went on throughout the night. There were some speakers who spoke about the first official chapter night. Our sisters heavily enjoyed listening to the chapters history. Not only was there entertainment to listen to, but there was also great food and drink selections that was enjoyed by all.

In the Philanthropy realm Zeta Alpha showed great creativity in their Benefit for "A Suitable Image". This local charity donates business clothes and prepares women for Interviews. Zeta Alpha put on a Fashion Show and raised $1800 in 2006. They repeated this event in subsequent years. Additionally they host a Professor's Tea that gives the sisters a chance to socialize with the faculty of Babson College.

In 2009 the chapter won Best Chapter Management Award at the KKG National Convention. At the Babson College Greek Awards they won Best Recruitment/NewMember Education Award and the Leadership on Campus Involvement Award. The chapter won the 'Highest GPA' not only of Sororities on campus but also All Women and All Greeks. The chapter size was around 50 members with members active in many other activities on campus.

Highlights of 2011

One of the biggest accomplishments of the Chapter was to win the Chapter Of The Year for the third consecutive year. Other awards achieved by ZA included Excellence in Risk Management (2010-2011), Excellence in Academics (2010-2011) , and Three Stars of Excellence (2010-2011). In terms of community service, there were many opportunities offered in the Chapter. The traditional semiannual Nat-Yo-Average Nacho Bar and annual Kappa Fashion show were successfully executed. In March, Kappas helped Best Buddies to Setup for their event. In addition, throughout the year, "Kappa Klean Up" was held almost every Sunday. The Chapter was present in many of Babson's Panhellenic Council events, including the Crush Party (which has been going on for three years now) and Professor Ice Cream (Spring) and Cider (Fall). In terms of Academics, the Semi-Annual Professors Tea was successfully held this year. On October 5th, sixteen new members were initiated as sisters. It has definitely been a successful year for Zeta Alpha.

Campus: Throughout the year, there were no major changes on campus. The programs and classes were consistent with previous year, and for the 15th year, Babson was ranked number 1 in Entrepreneurship. One of the biggest changes that definitely affected the Chapter was a decision made by Panhell. In the Fall, it was established that every sorority on campus had to have a total amount of 60 members.

Chapter: Since Zeta Alpha had a total of 53 active sisters, it was decided in the Fall that during Spring 2012, a COB event would occur so that seven more girls would be given bids in order to meet Panhellenic requirements.

Two of the major challenges encountered in the Chapter were unity within Zeta Alpha and accountability (attendance). In order to improve unity, one of the biggest focuses was to reform the tower lounge so that it would be more inviting for hanging out. In addition, there were movie nights and homework sessions created. A meal with a different sister(s) every week was also encouraged. As for accountability, the Standards Committee made sure to express consequences if needed in order to imply seriousness. There were also awards distributed by the Secretary at the end of the year to girls with perfect attendance.

Highlights of 2012

In fall 2012, Zeta Alpha chapter received the most new members of any of the Greek organizations on Babson campus, with a total of 30 girls. Our chapter also had several philanthropic successes. One of our greatest acheivements was the Annual Kappa Fashion Show. This philanthropy event raised over $1,000 for Dress for Success, which raises money for women who cannot afford business clothes.

Zeta Alpha also participated in a Founders' Day celebration at Harvard University on October 13th, which allowed us to celebrate Kappa history, learn more about its tradition, connect with nearby chapters, and meet alumni.

Our chapter also received an award from Babson College in Spring 2012 for our weekly "Kappa Kleanups," where sisters clean up our campus on Sunday mornings. Moreover, our chapter actively participates in Panhellenic events on campus, such as "Jail & Bail," which raised money for Rosie's Place, a local homeless shelter for women. Finally, we held our semi-annual Professors' Tea, where sisters could interact with professors outside of the classroom. These philanthropy events, campus involvements, and acheivement awards have made for a successful year for Zeta Alpha.

Throughout the year, there were few major changes on campus. The programs and classes were generally consistent with previous years, and for the 15th year, Babson College was ranked number 1 in Entrepreneurship. One of the biggest changes that affected the Chapter was a decision made by Panhellenic Council. In the Fall, it was established that every sorority on campus must have a total of 69 members. This meant that the Fall Recruitment process was more intensive, and required that a larger number of bids than usual be given out to potential new members. The effect on our Chapter was that Kappa received 30 total new members.

Highlights of 2013

At the start of 2013, Zeta Alpha hosted Kappasta, a 24-hour pasta bar event to benefit the Kappa Foundation. We also visited a regional early education site for a RIF event in which we read to children, provided them with many books, face painted, and had dessert cups. This afternoon spent at the Baldwin School proved to be very rewarding and fun for all of our sisters. As a chapter we participated in Greek Week, and we finished second in the overall contest. Our chapter was also awarded the Outstanding Greek Service Award at the Babson College all Greek forum following Greek Week.

Following Greek Week, we held a philanthropic event with the men of Delta Tau Delta known as “Delt Derby,” where turtles raced and barbecue food was provided. This new event was something our chapter was very proud of, especially since we were able to cooperate with another fraternity on campus. A few weeks later, our spring semester came to a close. Upon return in the fall this year, we hosted Kappa Kupcakes, to benefit the First Descents charity; we had a cupcake bar as well as several other desserts and coffee/tea. Our fall semester all of our sisters were very committed to academics and sisterhood, and we were able to strengthen our bonds in these avenues. We also prepared for spring recruitment 2014, in which we received 24 wonderful new members.

Recent changes on our campus include our campus having access to a hired Greek Leadership consultant; this has proved to very beneficial to our New Member chairman, as she has access to another advisor on campus. We also just finished a very successful recruitment this past week, in which we received 24 new members, all of which we are very thrilled to have received.

Highlights of 2014

Over the course of 2014, the Zeta Alpha chapter participated in many philanthropy events. In the spring semester, we had our usual RIF event where we go to a local area where the children do not have as many opportunities and spend time reading with them, face painting, and doing other activities. Seeing each other so involved and happy to give back was inspiring for all of our sisters. We also held a Kappa Con Queso event, where we serve nachos for 24 hours straight outside of our tower on campus. All of the proceeds, which amounted to over $900, were donated to RIF. Greek Week happened shortly after, and we united as a chapter to win first place. We were very proud of this accomplishment and it was a great way to show off how dedicated all of our sisters are to each other. One of our sisters won the Mrs. Greek Week competition, which was another big accomplishment for our chapter. We won Best Big/Little pair, as well as various other awards. In the fall, we started off our semester with the annual Kappa Fashion Show, which was a great success. We were sponsored by E.A. Davis and the Babson book store and had a great turnout, as well as an impressive amount of sister involvement. We had a large variety of items in our silent auction, from Kappa Alumni donated items to unique and beautiful artwork. After this event, the Zeta Alpha chapter turned its focus to a new event titled Kabob Con Queso. We took this philanthropy opportunity to partner with the business fraternity on campus, Delta Sigma Pi. It was a spin off of our Kappa Con Queso event and turned out to be one of our most successful events. With all of the amazingly successful events we participated in or ran over the course of 2014, we were excited to gain new members to help make these events even better in 2015. We added 21 outstanding new members this spring and we are sure they will do impressive things for our chapter in all of its endeavors.

The chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma at Babson College is extremely diverse given our small numbers. Babson is a strictly business college with only 2,000 students, and over 30% being international which is displayed in our membership involvement: usually around 70 women, including new members, involved with over 20 organizations. In terms of recent changes with Greek Life, a new Director of Fraternity and Sorority Life was hired and she has been very passionate about Greek life at Babson. She has done a lot to help our chapter and all of the other chapters adjust to the newer conditions Babson put in place for Greek life.

Chapter meetings are held in classrooms or conference rooms on campus. They are not chapter owned; we book an available room each week to hold chapter in. Our campus' Greek life is different in the fact that there are no sorority or fraternity houses allowed. Our chapter does however have a five floor "tower" of on campus housing that contains fifteen singles and a kitchen/common room. It is located next, and connected, to the sororities and fraternities that are also allowed housing on campus. The tower is university owned and has been the only location of Zeta Alpha's housing.