By Jamie Weissman
Alli Weiss is a girl who knows what she wants. As a junior communications major on the public relations track, Sigma Delta Tau’s Vice President of Philanthropy is devoted to a future working with nonprofit organizations and making social change.
Growing up in Weston, Florida, Weiss showed early signs that she was devoted to being a leader in social change. In high school, she was president of her youth group and went on to become Social Action Vice President of her region of NFTY. As Social Action VP, Weiss helped raise a substantial amount of money for Camp Jenny, a four-day camp her region of NFTY hosts in Atlanta, Georgia.
“It’s for underprivileged kids in inner city Atlanta and they get to come to camp for the weekend and it’ s like a sleep-away camp for four days. We raise a lot of money all year and it’s completely funded by the NFTY Southern Tropical region. It’s cool and a lot of fun,” Weiss explained.
Although many high school students do community service to put on college applications, Weiss’s devotion to serving the community didn’t end when she came to Maryland. After joining Sigma Delta Tau in Spring 2012 she became the sorority’s Vice President of Philanthropy.
“ It’s really fun because I get to help the sorority and I also get to help with two really great causes,” Weiss said.
As VP of Philanthropy, Weiss organizes events to benefit the sorority’s two philanthropies, Jewish Women International and Prevent Child Abuse America. Weiss helped organize events including Pinwheels for Prevention, and fundraisers at Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill and Sweetgreen. However, this semester, she’s working to organize one of the sorority’s biggest events: ΣΔΤ Your Way Through College Park.
“We have it at the [sorority] house and it’s an all you can eat buffet for $10 and it’s food from all the local College Park restaurants. It’s really fun!” she said.
Even though Weiss already helped the sorority raise over $1,000 before the November event, her involvement with Sigma Delta Tau’s philanthropies doesn’t end there. Over the summer, she worked at Jewish Women International, an organization devoted to empowering women, on a variety of projects.
“It was really good because it has a lot to do with my major and philanthropy which was cool. I worked on the Safe Smart Dating program which teaches college students about how to be active bystanders and what to do to stop sexual assault and things like that,” Weiss said, “ I also worked on a bunch of different workshops for women that taught them about how to be professional in DC and about financial literacy.”
The internship was the perfect fit for Weiss, who hopes to work in public relations for a nonprofit organization, preferably a larger organization that works with women’s issues, when she graduates.
“I have always been really into community service and helping people. I really like to write and talk to people so PR has always been a good track for me,” she explained.
For now, however, Weiss has exciting plans to look forward to. Recently, she was accepted to Maryland-in-Barcelona and will study there during for the Spring 2014 semester.
“I’m really excited to travel and I am excited to see a lot of different parts of the world that I’ve never seen before and meet new people and have a different experience than my one here,” Weiss said.