Our Founders

Maria Santora

Founding Role: President, Co-Treasurer

“When I first came to Emerson, basketball quickly became one of the biggest parts of my identity. My social life was centered around my teammates and the people within the athletic department. My days had at least three hours carved out because of practices or games. So at the start of my junior year when I decided basketball was no longer something I wanted to prioritize, I worried that that there would be this hole in my life and I wasn’t sure how to fill it… that is until I came up with this wild and crazy idea to start a new sorority. 

 

I told myself when I first started the process of sitting down with Emerson College to actually create the sorority that I was making it for the girls on campus that hadn’t found their niche, for the girls that needed a home away from home, for the 200 amazing women every semester that get rejected from Emerson’s fraternities and sororities, or for the girls that didn’t identify with the current fraternities and sororities at Emerson. Now looking back, I truthfully feel like I did it for myself; I did it because I feared without basketball I wouldn’t have my niche or my place at Emerson anymore. 

 

While I am incredibly grateful that my wild idea blossomed into a sisterhood of the most amazing women, I am even more grateful for all the little things these women and this process have taught me. These women I am now lucky to call my sisters have taught me that I was never ONLY defined as an athlete, that just because that chapter of my life was ending it didn’t mean there was a ‘hole’ in my life. These women have given me so much confidence because they support anything and everything I do. Having women in my life that always have my best interest at heart is the reason I know starting this sorority was the greatest idea I have ever had. That being said, since becoming a sister, my confidence in my career is also significantly higher. 

 

Since I was a little girl, I have had the dream of sideline reporting for a professional sports team. I am an extremely driven and hardworking person, some would say I am too much of a perfectionist, but that drive is what led me to Emerson College. Emerson College has the greatest resources and the greatest programs, which is helping to make my dream a reality.”

Amelia Fabiano

Founding Role: Vice President 

"Maria and I founded this chapter with the intention of bringing a group of amazing women together to create a legacy. I want and will always want this sorority to be a group that together feels safe, strong, and able to do anything that they set their minds to. It was an enormous leap of faith founding Xi Gamma Nu, and I feel so blessed to be well on our way to success. My favorite quote of all time is one by Galileo: ‘I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.’ Never be afraid to chase what sets your soul on fire, always strive to be a better person than you were yesterday, and spread as much love as you can while doing both. Go out there and slay, Gammas!”

Kristen Bruck

Founding Role: New Member Educator

"When I was little, I imagined my sorority experience would be door stacking and cooler painting. I had this image of sorority life in my head from when I was a child and watched my older cousins flash their TriDelta and SDT signs at graduation. Now, I realize that I really am living the sorority dream. How cool is it to say that I helped found a sorority? The leadership opportunities that Xi Gamma Nu has given me mean so much. I still can’t believe that our actions today will pave the way for future sisters. I’m beyond proud to be a founding member, and I hope all future generations of Xi Gamma Nu understand how special this sisterhood is.”

Kristen Carey

Founding Role: Historian

"I’ve been an Irish dancer since I was seven years old, and that had been what defined me for 11 years. Or, that’s what I had thought before coming to Emerson. After joining Xi Gamma Nu, I have begun to realize that I am more than just a dancer. I have taken all that I’ve learned from the dance world and combined it with my new life at Emerson. I know that this will be a place where I have the opportunity to grow and continue to define who I am. I’ve just started to discover so many new things about myself, and I’m excited. And I couldn’t be more happy than to have all my sisters of Xi Gamma Nu to help me continue to discover these new things.”

Morgan Davies

Founding Role: Service Chair, Risk Management Assistant

It is no coincidence that our symbol is a compass, make no mistake that we are trail blazers. Not just “we” as founders, but all of us as a sisterhood. We work hard to help benefit both our own community and one so much larger than our own, both through our philanthropy and our involvement on campus. We seek to foster each other’s dreams, and encourage one another in every endeavor. The bond we share is magnetic, unbreakable, and always there no matter what direction we seek to take. 

 

I am so excited to have the chance to pave the way for generations of girls to come, and to watch as our lines stretch out, mapping our history of loyalty, inclusion, empowerment, and sisterhood.” 

Alyssa Harberger

Founding Role: Wellness Chair 

"Our sisters strive to create well balanced lives for themselves and our chapter. Each member brings something new to our group from both professional and personal standpoints. Xi Gamma Nu has given me the ability to be a sister while simultaneously staying involved with EmComm and Emerson Channel. This summer I interned at a media agency in New York, as I work towards my ultimate goal of working for a non-profit organization. Our sisters support one another as a collective group but also as individuals pursuing our individual paths. There is no organization I would rather spend my last year with than Xi Gamma Nu.”

Andrea Kostovick

Founding Role: Fundraising Chair 

"Gloria Vanderbilt once said “I’ve always believed that one woman’s success can only help another woman’s success” and I stand behind this belief. One of my main goals as a woman and a marketer is to alter society’s unrealistic perception of beauty and eliminate the expectations that cause a strong community of women to compare each other’s imperfections. Whether that is accomplished through my own magazine or clothing line will be determined in the future. I joined Xi Gamma Nu because it is a sisterhood that upholds values empowering women from every background and encourages one another’s unique pursuits, while making an impact on the lives of future generations through our philanthropy partnership with the Kids In Need Foundation. The support and power of this sisterhood makes me feel as though I am sailing through life with a band of lifeboats behind me, ready to tackle the unpredictable waters and keep my compass set on the right path. Together, I know we can accomplish whatever we set our hearts and minds to, making big waves against the currents.”

Caroline Long

Founding Role: Insignia Chair, Recruitment Assistant

"I became a founding member of Xi Gamma Nu my freshman year, and I'm inspired by my fellow sisters every day! I believe Xi Gamma Nu is a loving community full of girls who are always striving to be the best version of themselves.”

Zoe Lyrintzis

Founding Role: Secretary

"Xi Gamma Nu is filled with some of the most unique and passionate women that I have met during my time at Emerson. Surrounding myself with the kind of people that led me to choose Emerson is important to me. Surrounding myself with a group of empowered and empowering women from different backgrounds and circumstances is inspiring. I hope future Xi Gamma Nu sisters are able to use this sisterhood as inspiration, motivation and support to follow their passions, whatever they may be, wholeheartedly and with no hesitation.”

Allie Martinez

Founding Role: New Member Educator

“I never really felt like I had a home at Emerson before Xi Gamma Nu. I was involved in extracurriculars, but nothing really felt like a place where I could be 100% me. When Maria reached out, asked if I was interested in the sorority that she was trying to put together, and showed me her PowerPoint with all the ideas she had in place, at first I was very hesitant. I had heard some off putting things about sororities and had this built up, stereotypical perception of Greek life. However, I wanted to give it a try and make something that both myself and others could be proud of and want to be a part of. It is easy to hide behind jokes and the laughter of others but when you meet people who see the real you there is nothing more special than having a group of young women who only want to see you succeed and be the best you can. Xi Gamma Nu offers that and more. I want to be the sister that is always there and will help in every situation. Every sister brings a different energy and light to the group and that’s what makes us so unique and special. We are athletes, artists, singers, dancers, creators and much more. We are Xi Gamma Nu.”

Kennedy Saaristo

Founding Role: Philanthropy Chair

“Applying to Emerson was kind of a joke to me at first and I don’t mean that in a condescending way. See, where I’m from, you end up at either Auburn or Bama (University of Alabama) after high school. That’s just the way it is. Emerson and Boston were comforting yet seemingly unattainable daydreams that were outlandish enough to keep my sense of practicality alive while igniting a hope that there was a place for me outside of the Cotton State. But honestly, my only real criteria for my future school was that it be as far away from Alabama as possible.  The day I got my acceptance letter was one of the happiest days of my life and for the first time I felt free. 

 
My start at Emerson however, was not the smooth sailing I expected it to be. I was a thousand miles away from everyone I loved and everything I knew; it was a heartbreak that hit me harder than I anticipated. Scared and tentative, I felt a loneliness that I couldn’t quite combat so I went a searching for a family, a place to call home. Xi Gamma Nu has given me a home and a family in the hearts of so many amazing, resilient, beautiful women I am proud to call sisters. Having a genuine support system is an incomparable blessing, one that only comes with forming a bond of mutual respect and love. These next few years will certainly present challenges and difficulties but I have the confidence that I will meet them with grace and integrity thanks to Xi Gamma Nu and the women who make up this sisterhood.”

Casey Tsamis

Founding Role: Recruitment Assistant, Co-Social Chair, Formal Chair

"Through my journey here at Emerson, I’ve met amazing people and had great experiences. One of the best opportunities I’ve had was becoming a member of the founding class of Xi Gamma Nu. This sorority has given me a home outside of softball, and has given me the ability to show my creativity and grow as a person. As future classes join our sisterhood, I hope this sorority will be everything we’ve ever imagined. Lastly, I leave you with this:

 

  • Throw what you know.

  • Take risks and be confident in yourself.

  • And most importantly, ‘May your foundation match your neck, concealer be creaseless, and winged eyeliner be sharp enough to kill. Amen.’”

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