The Impact of Gamma Sig
I joined Gamma Sig in Fall 2016, which was the fall of my freshman year. Although I joined knowing no one and completely on my own, which was way outside my comfort zone, I knew I wanted to be a part of an organization based on service since I was so involved with community service growing up. After joining, I quickly met sisters who instantly became friends and to this day I am so thankful for the friendships that are all due to joining Gamma Sig. I have met my best friends and future bridesmaids (shoutout Seashore Fam) and so many other girls who I would have never had the privilege of becoming friends with if not for Gamma Sig. Although the immediate friendships were great, I was so excited to start serving my community and going on projects.
I remember going on several projects my first semester as an MIT and really liking some of them (and others not as much) but there was one project that to this day has been my favorite project that we do with Gamma Sig, and that project is TOP Soccer. For those that don’t know, TOP Soccer is a program that creates the opportunity for kids with disabilities to play soccer with peers who are like them as well as with buddies who help them achieve this. As Gamma Sig volunteers, we are the buddies for these players. As a future pediatric occupational therapist, this project was right up my alley, as it is working with kids with disabilities and helping them out when needed. Although I loved the project from the start, there was one specific instance during the project that really encouraged me to keep volunteering.
At the beginning of this semester, I went on TOP Soccer and was paired with a girl named Maddy. She definitely came across as shy, as she was hiding behind her mom and didn’t even want to participate at first. As I tried to encourage her to participate like the rest of the kids, I was getting frustrated that I was not being successful in doing so. However, eventually she came out from behind her mom’s back and started playing with me. We talked about our favorite things-movies, foods, songs, books, places, etc- and I really felt a connection to her, even though we had just met. The hour of soccer flew by and I was so sad to have to leave Maddy. However, when I came back to do TOP Soccer again the next week, I was greeted by a smiling Maddy who hugged me and told me she was ready for another hour of soccer! Her mom told me that she originally did not want to go, but that her mom had reminded Maddy of how much fun she had with me and Maddy said she wanted to go to see me again. This made me so thankful to Gamma Sig for creating opportunities and moments like this one. Knowing and seeing firsthand the impact you have not only on the community but on individual people as well really is so rewarding. Gamma Sig has created so many opportunities for growth, reward, and impact and I can’t imagine my college life without it!