Sarah Slotnick, 26, credits Sigma Delta Tau, the historically Jewish sorority, with helping her find herself, both professionally and personally. (She and her fiancé were actually set up in college by a mutual friend for a sorority event.)
The Brookline, Mass. native and digital marketing professional chatted with WJW about why she loved being a sorority sister, the Patriots (pre-upset Super Bowl loss) and her (kind of) Instagram famous labradoodle, Callie.
You’re from Massachusetts, so how are you feeling about the Super Bowl this weekend?
I am feeling cautiously confident about this weekend. Being from Boston, it’s hard not to be a football fan and it’s really fun to root for the Patriots because they really do just get a whole region behind them.
Maybe alongside the Yankees, the Patriots are pretty well hated.
Right, if you don’t love them, you hate them. There’s no in between feeling. My fiancé is a diehard Ravens fan, so we have a nice football rivalry in our house. But this year it wasn’t too much of a competition.
You’re very involved with Sigma Delta Tau. What brought you into sorority life?
I went to the University of Maryland, a huge, huge school. So I really needed something to shrink the school. And I fell in love with the women in SDT. People always say to me, “Is it true, do you find your best friends?” I’m getting married in September, and I have seven bridesmaids and besides my fiancée’s sister they’re all members of SDT. So, for me it really was true. It really was where I found the people I intend on having in my life forever.
Greek life can get a bad rap. So, what about it made it such a good experience for you?
I think there’s a couple pieces. The first was the women in the entire organization really were just good people. Everyone had the same intention of finding people who were there for them unconditionally. It’s nearly impossible to have 200 best friends, but it’s not impossible to have 200 women who have your back no matter what.
And I don’t think you’re always exposed to so much leadership opportunity. SDT gave me the ability to take on new roles and explore what the adult-ish version of me looked like. It just gave me an outlet to find who I was. SDT is all about empowering women and I feel like it really did just that for me.
And you’re an adviser now for a chapter …
Two chapters! I think there’s something so special about being able to have the impact on women who are closer in age to you, but looking for someone they can look up to, someone who can understand where they’re coming from and how they got to where they are. Being able to have that impact on them, that’s what does it for me. It’s a time commitment, but it’s worth it.
What do you do when you’re not working or spending time with your sorority chapters?
I live in D.C., I am engaged, I have an almost 3-year-old labradoodle. So, I really spend whatever free time I have with my family and friends exploring D.C. We are big foodies, so we love to try the new restaurants. And we spend a lot of time at the dog park.
What’s your labradoodle’s name?
Her name is Callie. Callie is a giant ball of energy masked in a cuddle monster. She is the sweetest, most caring dog who loves nothing more than chasing after a tennis ball and her daily nap. Like, she loves a good nap. And you can follow her on Instagram @CapitalCallie.
Aw, she’s an Instagram dog. How popular is she?
Um, moderately. She’s very popular among our friends and family.
So, what does your Jewish identity mean to you and how does it play into your life?
I don’t think it’s necessarily a religious identity. It’s kind of my cultural upbringing and my moral identity. It’s always had an impact on my life — I went to Jewish summer camp, I was youth group president, the whole nine yards — but it was more always about the culture and the morals and less about religion. And I think that has come through to my life today. I don’t live near my family and I’m very, very fortunate that my fiancé’s family is incredible and they live in Baltimore, but, like, we hosted Rosh Hashanah at our house this year. And we invited all our friends who live a little bit away from their families and that was important to me — the community aspect, the cultural aspect, being together and recognizing who we are and where we came from. And I think that’s what’s really important to me, not the physical act of doing Shabbat.
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