To Be

a Sister 

Product Design

Spring 2017

The idea for this product came from the belief that the experience of being in a sorority would be greatly improved if the members valued each other as if they were actually sisters.


I created this project to encourage sorority sisters to treat each other like family. The product is meant to be used in the “Big Little” ceremony that most sororities have. Overall, the product speaks to what it means “To Be a Sister.” Inside, there is a pledge and two necklaces to be serve as reminders of the pledge. There is also a book that explains what being a sister is about and shares the story about my sister and me. Initially, I questioned whether my story needed to be in the book. But I realized that I needed to make sure that my message was taken seriously and that the necessity for care and compassion was clearly understood.


This issue is very important and personal to me. My own sister, who has passed, was in a sorority that outright bullied her and abandoned her in her time of need. Like many other new college students, my sister struggled to find her place in a large school. She sought out a sorority in the hopes of feeling the sense of community they advertised. Instead, she experienced judgment and exclusion.


The pain she felt broke my brother’s and my hearts. We urged her to quit, but she remained optimistic. She insisted, “I just need to find my people; I need to give them a chance.”


The night she died, she had left a fraternity party with some of her sorority sisters. She was dropped off alone, somewhat close to her dorm. She was so inebriated that she walked off completely in the wrong direction. She continued walking until she stopped to rest at the campus fire station, where she was run over by a car.


Although her sorority was not directly responsible for her death, I believe they could have prevented it. In the state she was in, she should have never been left alone. A sister should lay their sister down on her side, get her some water and stay with her until she was sure she was safe.


Many sororities throw around the word sisterhood like the dictionary definition is a group of women who binge drink together. The relationship between sisters should instead be based in love, loyalty and respect.


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