Finding Belonging in DPhiE

Finding Belonging in DPhiE - Betty LeungAs a first generation college student, Betty Leung was faced with a unique set of challenges. Her parents immigrated from China in pursuit of the American Dream; working low-paying jobs in order to provide their children a better life and a good education. Betty shared, “Since I was a young child, I was taught the importance of education and it surrounded every facet of my early life. While my parents were able to guide my path to college, they were unable to relate or understand my struggles – I had to figure out a lot of it on my own, such as, applying to colleges, understanding financial aid, and choosing my course load and major.” 

Throughout her time in college, she worked an on campus job in order to financially support herself and took part in organizations to provide her a sense of belonging. Reflecting on her college experience she shared, “My experience taught me grit and my parents’ sacrifices shaped me into the person that I am today. Graduating from college is the greatest accomplishment in my life thus far.”

The core source of her sense of belonging during her collegiate years was Delta Phi Epsilon. Betty leaned on her chapter sisters as a support system. She shared her favorite DPhiE memory from her chapter days, “The spring semester of my senior year a few of my pledge sisters and I traveled to Europe for spring break! We visited Paris and Barcelona and had such a great time!” Her support system of sisters created a home away from home for Betty on campus and will forever be her lifelong friends.

After changing her major three times, she earned her degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Business Analytics. She found her passion in using technology to drive meaningful insights. After graduating college, Betty went on to work as a Corporate & Investment Bank Analyst at J.P. Morgan in New York City. 

In addition to the support from her sisters, Betty also received support financially from the Delta Phi Epsilon Educational Foundation. By receiving a scholarship. She was able to reduce her financial burden, have a peace of mind, and continue to pursue her educational dreams. Betty shared, “I am forever grateful to the Educational Foundation for their generous financial support when I needed it the most and for believing in me and my dreams.”


Where Are They Now

By: Emily Mertz

As a current law student at the University of Iowa, Emily Mertz credits DPhiE for providing her valuable professional development opportunities and helping her to find her lifelong passion. As her chapters Member at Large and an International Leadership Consultant on staff at IHQ, Emily learned professional skills that she uses everyday in her career. 

Emily shared, “With a career in law, you always have to be thinking on your feet. During my time as an ILC I learned adaptability and professional communication skills – both of which I use daily. Those are skills you don’t typically learn in college but as an ILC I had to be able to resolve problems on short notice and communicate the solutions properly.” Throughout the year as an ILC she learned about herself, her leadership style, and her communication style.

As the Member at Large for her chapter, she oversaw the standards board process. Learning organizational and mediation skills throughout the year.  When interviewing for law school, she spoke highly of the experience she gained from DPhiE and how it helped her pinpoint her passion for justice. 

Throughout her various involvements, her biggest takeaway from DPhiE was the opportunity to lobby on Capitol Hill. This was an opportunity to advocate in favor of legislation important to DPhiE, share updates about her campus experience with Senators, and network with undergraduate and alumnae fraternity/sorority life members. Reflecting on this opportunity she shared, “It’s a really unique experience and you get to meet sisters from all over the country! At the end of the day you channel your communication skills from talking with people one on one – while advocating can be applicable to many different careers, a political career does not have to be your end goal to participate.” 

After a day long training, the program pairs you up with fraternity/sorority life members from your region. For 15 minutes you speak with political representatives from your region to pitch your platform. Emily shared, “The meetings are quick, sometimes you’re even walking down the hallway meeting with senators.” You also get to connect with DPhiE sisters and volunteers from across the country. “We (DPhiE sisters) all met for group meals and everyone got really close – it was a great experience to work with sisters from completely different backgrounds.”

Emily is currently a law student at the University of Iowa, a volunteer intern for the Lavender Legal Center (a center that provides direct representation, advocacy, and referrals for LGTBQ youth), and a Research Assistant at her university! The skills she learned from Delta Phi Epsilon across her various involvements has provided her the skills to thrive.

If you are interested in learning more about Hill Visits, reach out to

Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority, the First to Welcome Non-Binary Members, Rallies Support for Universal Policy Change

Alexa Lamanna, West End Strategy Team; 202-320-2766

Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority, the First to Welcome Non-Binary Members, Rallies Support for Universal Policy Change
National Panhellenic Conference to introduce policy amendment in April, allowing each sorority to define “woman-only” as they choose, which allows for inclusion of non-binary individuals

PHILADELPHIA - Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority (DPhiE), an international social sorority that was the first -- and remains the only -- to establish a membership policy welcoming both transgender women and non-binary individuals, is calling on fellow sororities to follow suit and become more inclusive.

On April 10, the 26 member organizations of the sorority umbrella organization, the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC), will have the opportunity to vote to adopt a proposed policy change that if enacted, will allow each sovereign member sorority to define “woman” however they choose. This change would pave the way for non-binary, as well as transgender individuals, to be considered for membership within participating sororities.

DPhiE’s Trans Woman and Non-Binary Gender Policy, established in 2017, is the only existing recruitment policy to explicitly invite non-binary individuals to pursue membership. The forthcoming introduction of an amendment to NPC’s Panhellenic Recruitment Eligibility policy will support DPhiE’s policy and allow for other member organizations to adopt parallel policies.

“Delta Phi Epsilon applauds NPC for introducing a proposed change that has the potential to open up sorority membership on campuses across North America to people who are committed to the advancement of womanhood,” said Roxanne Donovan, international president of the Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority International Governing Board. ”We hope all our fellow NPC member organizations will vote to adopt it. As an organization guided by our founding principles of justice, sisterhood and love, and committed to anti-discrimination practices, Delta Phi Epsilon established our gender policy to respond proactively to the evolving gender binary and what we were seeing on our campuses. The policy has been rewarding for our members and aligns with our values and purpose. Our founders formed DPhiE with the purpose of accepting all races and religions, and with the motto, ‘Esse Quam Videri’ -- ‘To be, rather than to seem to be.’ We live our values, and we welcome members to come as they are, be true to themselves and find a sense of belonging within our sisterhood.”

DPhiE’s Trans Woman and Non-Binary Gender policy reads: “As the public understanding and definition of gender identity and expression evolves, so must our understanding and definition of what makes a person eligible for inclusion in sisterhood. We believe this policy continues our long legacy of leadership relating to our commitment to sisterhood itself.

“The purpose of this policy is to establish an environment that is safe, free from stigma and discrimination, and welcoming for all potential new members, sisters, volunteers and staff, regardless of sexual orientation or gender expression.

“Delta Phi Epsilon is dedicated to the empowerment of all women. This necessarily includes our being welcoming and inclusion of trans women and gender non-binary individuals.”

After DPhiE enacted its policy, NPC questioned whether it might impact Title IX exemption status, ultimately concluding this year that the concern was unfounded. NPC’s proposed amendment updates recruitment eligibility language to state that each member organization “determines its own membership selection policies and procedures, including its definition of woman,” which opens the door for all member organizations to consider welcoming non-binary members.

"As a non-binary person, I had absolutely no intention of joining a sorority because I thought that the Greek life system was outdated and harmful in its reinforcement of cisheteronormativity and the gender binary. But when I heard that DPhiE was explicitly non-binary-inclusive at the international level, I became intrigued and decided to give it a chance," said Kelly Chen, a member of DPhiE at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where they are a senior. "Joining DPhiE was one of the best decisions I've made as an undergrad. I found an incredibly supportive community in my chapter, without which my MIT experience would have been very different. I never would have joined DPhiE without the trans woman and nonbinary inclusion policy. Policies like ours allow people like me to strengthen and be strengthened by Greek life communities."

Added Nicole DeFeo, Delta Phi Epsilon International Executive Director, “Delta Phi Epsilon is proud of the leadership efforts we have undertaken that have contributed to the larger fraternal community in bringing policies into the present. We firmly believe that if NPC’s amendment is adopted, it will promote the development of more equitable and inclusive sorority communities on college and university campuses in the US and Canada. We hope our fellow members of NPC will see this change as an opportunity to join Delta Phi Epsilon in ensuring the Panhellenic community is a place where all feel comfortable being their true, authentic selves.”

DPhiE leadership, as well as current undergraduate members and recent alumni, are available for interview. Please reach out to Alexa Lamanna at or 202-320-2766 to be connected.

About Delta Phi Epsilon, Inc.

Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority was founded on March 17, 1917, at New York University Law School as a social organization for women. Its mission is to provide a sisterhood experience rich with tradition, innovation and opportunities for growth.

Celebrate Your Womanhood in March with Wellness

By: Amanda Landry, LMHC, NCC, CAP

March for DPhiE sisters is a big deal.  It marks our Founder’s Day, a time we celebrate what the DIMES created for our sisterhood.  March is also Women’s History Month.  What a perfect month for us women, the sisters of Delta  Phi Epsilon, to take time for wellness and self-care.

The Wellness Committee has formed and will be creating content on a regular basis to support you in your wellness journey.  We will focus on the following seven areas of wellness.  While this list is not comprehensive, it’s a great starting place for you to assess your overall wellness and create a plan to take care of yourself, whether that’s through small self-care rituals everyday or by taking bigger steps and following through with recommended medical treatments.  

Here are the seven areas of wellness that you can begin to work on, with ideas on how to begin your wellness journey:

Mental Health: Check in with a local therapist and begin working on your mental health.  Not ready to start working with a therapist?  Connect with supportive sisters on a regular basis and share your feelings with each other.  This is the power of our sisterhood at it’s finest.  

Active Health:  Get moving!  This means different things for different people.  Being active can be as simple as going for a 20 minute walk or setting a goal for running that marathon you’ve wanted to complete.  Looking to connect with sisters?  Plan a dance or yoga class as a sisterhood or alumnae event.  There are a lot of places who are hosting events through Zoom and they can be equally as fun and engaging as in-person.   

Medical Health: Follow-up with your primary care doctor and make sure you’ve had a physical within a year.  While we aren’t going to give you any specific medical advice, we do recommend that you follow medical recommendations for your medical staff.    

Sexual/Reproductive Health:  This is another area where following up once a year with your medical team is going to be important.  Find a doctor you know, like and trust.  Be sure to ask them whatever questions you have and ensure that you get the answers you are looking for.  Reproductive and sexual health can create a lot of fear for people so having someone on your side that can guide you is important.  For college-aged sisters, there are usually a lot of free resources on campus to help you get started.  

Dermatology/Skin Care: Wear sunscreen!  This is probably skin care 101 for most women; however it is the best advice out there.    

Spiritual Health:  Spirituality means different things to different people.  We want you to make your own interpretation on what spiritual health means to you.  When working on wellness, be sure to look for ways to consider your spiritual health; whether that’s attending church, meditating or being out in nature.  

Holistic Health: When working on wellness and health, it’s important to work on a holistic approach and consider a variety of ways to seek your solutions.  Holistic health actually looks at all of the areas outlined here when considering wellness. 

We look forward to providing you with content on each of these areas to ensure our sisterhood is focused on wellness.  While March is a good time to reset and reevaluate your wellness journey, wellness and health is something important to consider throughout your year.    

Name: Amanda Landry

Chapter: Beta Tau

Bio: I’m Amanda and I’m excited you have found me. I love working with young adults to find their passion in life, remove blocks that are keeping them from being their most awesome self and learn to live a life they have always dreamed.I practice therapy in a beautiful and comfortable office in Davie & Wellington Florida at my own private practice called Caring Therapists of Broward & Palm Beach. I’m a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, Certified Addictions Professional and National Certified Counselor. I’ve been a therapist for more than 8 years and absolutely love what I do. I’ve worked with teenagers overcome addictions, young adults go off to college and become successful, and young adults overcome depression and anxiety. I have helped couple’s save their marriages and relationships.  Find out more at