Throughout a year full of unpredictability, one Miami University organization has found new opportunities for community, life skills and empowerment.
SheTribe — a national organization founded by Chicago natives Allie Gottlieb and Hope Lowdermilk — is an all-women organization that teaches professional and personal life skills.
In order to begin a sheTribe U chapter at any university, founders must first form an executive board. The women of Miami’s sheTribe chapter went through this process during the summer of 2020.
The different women that make up Miami’s sheTribe executive board all wanted to be a part of something bigger than themselves that empowered women and set them up for success.
“Every woman on this college campus and beyond, we’re all on a level playing field of wanting to be successful and have the skills and tools to be successful in our future,” said junior Arin Mintz, president of sheTribe U at Miami.
At the start of the fall semester, they had a complete executive board and about 18 members, said the vice president, sophomore Riss Hasseman.
At each meeting, the chapter comes together over Zoom to discuss the topic of the week. The topic is curated by the founders of sheTribe, as they put together a curriculum for each chapter to follow.
The lessons cover everything from how to make a proper resume to how to know your own self worth in the age of social media.
“It’s important because a lot of girls in all different majors may feel not as confident when it comes to themselves and their work, or their health, and they’re just not feeling as good about themselves as they could,” said Julia Lett, a sophomore interior design major and member of sheTribe. “SheTribe is good for women to advance in those areas and just be better for themselves.”
Each lesson is adapted to meet the needs of each specific chapter. SheTribe aims to customize its lessons so each woman is getting the most from them.
“Our founders work to give us curriculum each week with a different skill, whether it be hard skills or soft skills,” Hasseman said. “They give us a slide deck, and from that slide deck, the exec of each chapter across the nation kind of makes it our own.”
The executive board of sheTribe wants to create an environment where women feel comfortable to discuss issues they are having and, in the process, learn important life skills to help them through it. Because sheTribe is an all-female organization geared toward building a community, it is easy to compare it to a sorority. However, in sheTribe, while members are building relationships, the organization is heavily geared toward self-improvement and self-care.
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“Not only are you building relationships with girls from your college, you’re just building networks and also you’re learning things that I don’t think any other organization on campus offers,” Hasseman said.
The lessons the executive board teaches cover topics that are specific to the women of sheTribe.
“There’s no college course that teaches you what we’re learning in sheTribe,” Mintz said. “You don’t go to a college course and learn about these soft skills like self worth and mental health.”
SheTribe’s recruitment process also differs from that of a traditional sorority.
The executive board posts on social media and reaches out to women they think would be a good fit. They accept anyone who applies because they simply want women who want to learn the things they teach.
“As long as they are willing to participate and be excited about it and are just happy to be a part of something, then that’s really what we look for in girls,” Hasseman said.
According to the sheTribe national website, its mission is to, “empower, educate, and inspire women to become the absolute best version of themselves.” The women of sheTribe Miami care deeply about what they are learning and teaching.
“I am gaining something that I would not have gotten if I didn’t join sheTribe,” Hasseman said. “I’m getting the network, I’m getting the friends and I have already learned so much even just about myself.”