In the first part of this series, we learned who Abigail Davis was and the amazing things she accomplished for Alpha Delta Pi. Here, we will learn more about her lasting legacy and how the Abigail Davis Emergency Grant Fund supports our sisters in financial distress.
Toby, the past Chapter President of Beta Epsilon – University of South Carolina, shares her personal story with us.
During the months before my senior year at the University of South Carolina, I was sure I couldn’t be happier. I was the president of Beta Epsilon, we were preparing for recruitment and our new alpha class, and I was surrounded by my best friends, the most encouraging, inspiring women I’ve ever known, as I was preparing to wrap up my academic career studying Public Health and Psychology.
I was anxious, as many seniors are, about the big decisions that the year ahead held, but I was excited to soak up the last few months I had with my people. I had never expected that, during the last few weeks of summer, I would have to seriously contemplate whether or not it was feasible to return to school for my senior year.
Complicated financial circumstances left me unable to qualify for sufficient loans to cover my tuition and living expenses, and I was stretched impossibly thin balancing two jobs, school work, applying and interviewing for jobs, and Alpha Delta Pi commitments. I drained savings accounts to cover the first few installments of my fall semester expenses, but I was completely unsure of how I would pay for the remainder of the year with my income at the time.
Prayer and extensive conversations with my chapter advisor brought me face to face with the Abigail Davis Emergency Grant Application. Confiding in my sisters about my story with vulnerability and receiving such immense generosity from women I have never met made Alpha Delta Pi an immeasurably more significant part of my life.
I learned the importance of relying on your sisters, the people who will love you unconditionally, and being available for sisters to rely on you. I learned what truly selfless love looks like, as sisters from across the country came together to support me because they believed in my ability to succeed in school and my career. And finally, I learned that the influence of Alpha Delta Pi lasts far beyond four years of college.
It gives the women lucky enough to call ADPi home an opportunity to cultivate deep, sincere friendships with women of all ages and backgrounds, as well as the privilege of influencing, mentoring, equipping, and encouraging each other with our time, words, finances, and service.
Thanks to the generosity of my sisters, I graduated Cum Laude with my Bachelor of Arts in Public Health and Leadership Distinction in Professional and Civic Engagement. I am now living in Washington DC, working for a US Senator, and surrounded by sisters from different parts of the country. I will be forever thankful for the generosity of my ADPi sisters and I look forward to paying this love forward!
One hundred years after Abigail Davis passed away, she is still making her mark on this sisterhood by helping our sisters stay in school. We are grateful for her leadership and the impact she had on Alpha Delta Pi. And we are grateful for our chapters and sisters who continue to support this fund as well as the Alpha Delta Pi Foundation.
If you are a collegian with unforeseen financial issues and would like more information about the Abigail Davis Emergency Grant, please click here.