“It was my senior year in high school, and one of my church members was telling me about how the summer bridge program at JSU was for her. And I always wanted to go to an HBCU, so I was like, ‘Well let’s go look and see what Jackson State is like.’

When we came down, I loved how the campus looked, and they had a DJ playing music on the plaza. I saw the Greek Unity Circle and how everyone was strolling together. I said to myself, ‘I want to go here because it feels like family.’ I knew this was the school for me.

I always wanted to be Greek. Last spring, I became part of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated. My mom is a member of Sigma Gamma Rho. She crossed up north where Sigma Gamma Rhos are very big. And growing up, I wanted to be just like my mom, but she told me not to do anything just because she did it. She told me to see which chapters follow their principles and watch how they handle themselves. That’s who you want to go with.

Well the Lambda Beta chapter, every since I’ve been here, has been warm and welcoming. They have people with different shapes, sizes, personalities, and majors. So I was like, ‘That’s an organization I would love to be part of because I don’t have to try and fit in. I can just be myself.”

– Khaliya, junior psychology major from Park Forest, Ill.