Greek for life
Madison Wilson ’13 always knew she wanted to be in a sorority. What she couldn’t
imagine were the opportunities being a Greek would afford her, and how it would
change her life.
Madison is from Griffin, Ga., where her father serves as county manager. While
she was growing up, her mother worked for Griffin’s Downtown Development Authority,
so Madison learned the importance of public service at an early age.
“It’s something I was always around,” she says.
She also grew up knowing about Greek life.
“My dad was in a fraternity,” she says. “And in Griffin, it’s kind of the thing
to do. So I really wanted to be in a sorority.”
She ended up pledging Phi Mu, and by the middle of her freshman year, she was
“Some of the senior girls came up to me in December and told me they thought I’d
be a great voice to have on the leadership side of things. They asked me to run
for secretary, and I agreed on the condition that they would help me write a speech
and prepare me for it.”
That set the pattern for Madison, as she moved up the Phi Mu leadership ladder.
She was elected membership director her sophomore year, and now she is chapter
president – something she never thought would happen to her.
“I never ran for any kind of positions in high school. But when I came in as a
freshman, the girls gave me the courage to run for something. Now I’m chapter president.
I’ve realized that I can actually handle the leadership roles. It’s been great
learning that about myself.”
Madison is a political science major, with a double minor in history and theater.
She’s a tutor and has done some work as a research assistant through the political
“There was a lot of hands-on research where I learned a lot,” she says. “And now
I’m a tutor. It’s another thing I never expected I would be able to do.”
While political science, history and theater may seem to be an odd combination,
Madison says they all speak to different parts of her.
“I want to go to graduate school for public administration, and maybe do what
my dad does,” she says.
She became interested in history after watching her boyfriend, who is a history
“I thought his classes looked interesting, so I decided to sign up for a class.
I ended up really liking it. Dr. (Joe) Cafaro (Chair of the History and Social
Sciences Department) and his Russian history classes were my favorites, and I love
Dr. (Kevin) Shirley (Professor of History) because he makes his classes so fun.
He makes sure everyone is involved in the classes with reading assignments and
presentations. You can’t help but have fun in his classes.”
She became interested in theater after taking a Creative Movement class for her
first fine arts elective.
“I had never done any theater before, but I fell in love with it. I ended up taking
the advanced class last spring, and I’m taking three more classes now. I decided
I wanted to do something fun.”
This summer, she had another adventure when she was elected national sweetheart
of Alpha Delta Gamma at the fraternity’s 2012 convention. She was nominated by
the LaGrange College chapter, and was the unanimous choice of the national delegates.
“I was so surprised, and honored,” she says. “It was a lot of fun to go to the
convention and meet all the guys and represent the college and ADG. It was another
wonderful thing that I never expected would happen to me.”
A new chapter president will take over in December, and Madison says she is dreading
“I’ve loved serving so much that I’m not sure how I’m going to feel about handing
it over to someone else.”
But she knows it’s time to focus on what comes next. She’s looking at graduate
programs and studying for the Graduate Record Exam. Her heart, however, will always
stay with Phi Mu.
“I’ve learned so much about myself,” she says. “And I love the aspect of being
really close with my Phi Mu sisters and all the other Greeks. We are united by
one thing – that we are Greek. It’s hard to explain, but it has changed my life.”