As a newlywed, I asked my mother-in-law to help me wallpaper
one of Pi Gamma’s
bathrooms. My chapter at the U
of New Mexico
needed my help and this was a small way
that I could make a difference as an alumna. Little did I
know where that simple task would lead me.
Years later, after moving to Florida, I began working with
at Florida State U
. I served on their advisory
board for a couple of years and gradually saw the
greater need as an alumna was to serve on their house
corporation. So I took the plunge and began a journey
that has led to many great adventures.
I have completed several major building projects for
Gamma Chapter and it has been a pleasure to see the
chapter flourish. The collegians seem to love the chapter
house, and I know that it provides the anchor for their
Year after year, I have decorated and re-modeled and
maintained their home but I have been given even greater
gifts from my Gamma Sisters. The chapter members have
kept me current with fashion, music, computer skills, and
more. Plus I always had the best babysitters for my boys as
they grew up. I was confident when my son left for college
as I understood the current college student.
A big misconception is that house corporation members
don’t work with collegians. Quite the opposite! You get
to know the women, observing how they use space and their likes and dislikes. In this way, you can create and
maintain a home that meets their needs.
In 2001, I was invited to the Chi Omega Executive Headquarters
to be part of a task force focusing on how the
Fraternity could support its local volunteers. One thing
led to another and I was asked to serve as charter member
of the National House Corporation Team (NHCT).
I am so glad I said “yes!” This role introduced me to many
special friends. I truly have Sisters coast to coast. NHCT
pushed me to learn new skills and exceed my personal expectations.
I would have never imagined I would be representing
Chi Omega on a national level and that others
would be asking for my advice.
I have a degree in nursing and have two sons. Neither
of these necessarily points to being a house corporation
volunteer. Nevertheless, as a volunteer I have learned to
create budgets; am now knowledgeable about building
permits; and I have countless computer skills. Chi Omega
continues to encourage me to step outside my comfort
level and never stop learning.
The Fraternity has always held a special place in my heart.
During my college years, Chi Omega provided many
great memories and special friendships that have lasted a
lifetime. As a collegian, I saw the importance of alumnae
support, and I’m so glad I’ve been able to carry on their
Fast Facts: Chi Omega
- Number of properties
owned by Chi Omega
House Corporations: 79
- Combined live-in capacity
of facilities owned by Chi
Omega House Corporations:
- Live-in capacity of all Chi
Omega occupied, university-
owned facilities: 1,396
- University + Other (rented):
1,453 (e.g. universityowned
housing, dorm floor,
- Number of volunteers serving
on Chi Omega house
corporation boards: 999
- Number of volunteers serving
on the National House
Corporations Team: 13
- Facility Type / Number / %
House 102 59%
It’s important to remember
Dorm 21 12%
Lodge 15 9%
Suite 18 10%
None 17 10%
that all Chi Omega chapters
should have a house
corporation to maintain
the chapter’s assets, which
may include improved real
estate, saving for possible
future housing or housing
upgrades, and storing ritual
supplies, and more.
Gillian Stewart graduated with a bachelor of science degree in nursing from the U of New Mexico. She was initiated by Pi Gamma Chapter and served as recruitment chair, personnel chair, and G.H.
Now a resident of Tallahassee, Florida, Gillian is an inveterate volunteer for Gamma/Florida State U, where she served as financial advisor and Panhellenic advisor. Since 1998, Gillian has been president of Gamma’s house corporation. She is a founding member of Chi Omega’s National House Corporation Team and currently serves as chair. She is also a member of the Chi Omega Foundation’s 1895 Society. Gillian and her husband, David, are the parents of two adult sons.