Thursday, February 28, 2013

Wear Your Badge with Pride

       We, as members of a women’s fraternity, have symbols of our membership. These symbols and their meanings are special and known only to us, those who have the privilege of wearing them, yet we wear them as demonstrated pride of our commitment to Delta Gamma. It is more than a piece of jewelry; it is a symbol of our love, devotion and pride.
Maureen Sweeney Syring, former Fraternity President, once said, “Our badge is our outward symbol of our inner commitment.” It is important to remember why we wear our badge and when we wear our badge. To wear our badge, you should be aligned with the meanings and purpose of Delta Gamma. The purpose of wearing our badge is to show our understanding, love and commitment for the organization and those things for which Delta Gamma stands. 
Consider this: you are always wearing your letters, but you should wear your badge to show your additional pride and love for the Fraternity and our mission and values.
When to wear your badge:
Any time you are feeling your best, looking your best
On chapter badge day to show pride in membership and the strength of the beliefs and commitment to Delta Gamma
At formal chapter
At Initiation
At the Pi Alpha ceremony
Founders Day
Delta Gamma alumnae meeting
Panhellenic meeting or gathering
Delta Gamma memorial service or funeral
When it’s not a great idea to wear your badge:
You just rolled out of bed and are not necessarily looking your personal best
If you are having a really, really bad day and are in a not-so-good mood
You are at a bar; you are drinking
Your behavior is not reflective of Delta Gamma standards or values

Q: “I thought I could only wear my badge if I was wearing formal chapter attire like a dress.”
A: There is no Fraternity policy for badge attire. Each chapter has different dress requirements for formal chapter in its bylaws and standing rules. Some state dresses; some state no strapless dresses; some state business attire; some state nothing. The badge may be worn at any time, however, as long as you look neat, polished and presentable and your behavior reflects the standards of the Fraternity. 

Q: “Is there a specific place I have to wear my badge?”
A: The badge may be worn anywhere, as specific in Fraternity policy. It may be worn as a pendant, on a bracelet or as a pin. If it is worn as a pin, it is over the heart. A helpful tip for placement: place your thumb on your throat, right above the sternum, spread out your palm, and place the badge where the base of the pinky finger meets the base of the fourth finger.

Q: “I never ordered a badge. Is it too late for me to get one?”
A: Any initiated member of Delta Gamma Fraternity may order a badge at any time from the Fraternity jeweler, J. Brandt.

Q: “I cannot afford a badge.”
A: J. Brandt offers a sterling silver badge option for only $45. For the price of a few lattes, you can have your badge for a lifetime.

Q: “I am in poor standing and on probation with my chapter. I was told I cannot wear my badge.
A: Only members in good standing may wear the Delta Gamma badge. When a member is no longer on probation, she may again wear her badge with pride and as emblem of aligning with the standards of membership and the values and meanings of the Fraternity.

Q: My friend resigned her membership, but she still wants her badge. Is that okay?
A: If someone is no longer a member of the Fraternity, she may not wear the badge. A badge must be returned to Executive Offices if a member resigns or is expelled.  By owning or wearing a badge, a woman is demonstrating her beliefs and values are in line with those of the Fraternity and she agrees to uphold the meanings and secrets of Delta Gamma. If she no longer is a member, these no longer apply, and her badge must be surrendered.

Staige Davis Hodges, Beta Theta-Duke, is the Fraternity Director of Scholarship and Rituals. You can reach Staige at 

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