LEXINGTON, Ky.- One University of Kentucky student didn’t take the usual college spring break. On her calendar was a trip to Costa Rica with 17 strangers.
Stewart Cook, a junior and member of Delta Delta Delta sorority, applied in late August for the Evergreen leadership program that consisted of an application process and would develop leadership skills of the 18 selected members from across the country. The director of the program was Sigma Chi’s national president.
“During the course of the week, we would have seminars in which each day we would focus on learning about leadership and we would hold conversations about problems in our chapters and how we felt we as leaders could resolve these issues,” said Cook.
After these seminars, the afternoons were filled with excursions throughout Costa Rica like hiking, zip lining and visiting a coffee farm. These activities were used to apply what the women learned and to work as a team in difficult situations.
Other Delta Delta Delta members from Missisippi State, James Madison, Washington State, University of Maryland, Ohio State, UCLA and Butler University joined Cook.
One selected member was Leah Drinnon from Mississippi State.
“The best part of the tip was meeting Tri Delta sisters from all over the country. With over 200,000 sisters across the country and Canada, it’s hard to think that I was put with 16 sisters I didn’t know, and within one week we all came out as best friends,” said Drinnon.
After the Evergreen retreat, Cook believed that her experience in Costa Rica ultimately made her a better leader.
“The most important thing I learned was the importance of trusting and valuing myself as a leader and having the confidence to step up and do what is right,” said Cook.
Cook says that she would encourage other girls to apply for this opportunity because she not only learned a lot as a leader, but she also built great friendships.