The Big Little Tradition


NATALIE CERASOLI – Features Writer

The sorority big-little tradition actualizes rush’s promises of  the organization being, “A home away from home, a family miles away from your own.”

Each of Samford’s sororities go about the process in different ways, yet all have the same result: a new “little” sister with a “big” sister from the previous year’s pledge class to love and guide her.

Alpha Delta Pi pledges were the first to receive their bigs this year. At their pledge class sleepover, the girls each found a basket of their favorite things and a pair of pajamas. The girls were then told that their bigs were waiting for them in the chapter room, wearing matching pajamas.

Freshman education major Alyson McDonald said that she “loved the surprise and loved getting her big so early on in the year.” ΑDPi is unique in their big process, as other sororities had to wait weeks to find out who their bigs are.

Alpha Omicron Pi had a similar big-little reveal just a few weeks ago. The 2013 pledges were each given a pair of socks wrapped in colorful paper. They then went into the next room, where they found their big wrapped in the same paper as their gift and wearing socks matching the ones the littles had just been given.

Freshman nursing major Anna Catherine Davis said that the “moment when [they] unwrapped their bigs’ faces to reveal their identity was beyond exciting.”

The new sisters of Chi Omega, Phi Mu and Zeta Tau Alpha are still waiting to meet their bigs. The process these sororities use is quite different than that of the other two, with each new sister paired with a different potential big every week.

Chi Omega’s new sisters have “owl pals” that take them around Birmingham weekly. Zeta calls these girls “crowns,” and go on “crown dates.” Similarly, freshman journalism and mass communication major Allie Hales said that Phi Mu members “spend time with their ‘heart sisters’ each week.”

These weekly dinners and activities provide both girls with an opportunity to get to know each other better. At the end of the month, these three sororities will have their new sisters rank the older girls with whom they have spent time with. The older sisters do the same and are paired with their top choices.

The big-little tradition may be stressful for some, but for many sorority sisters, it is the most wonderful time of the year.