By Silvia Stanciu, Special to The Chronicle
She's the First is a club with an ambitious mission, "Sponsoring girls' education in the developing world." Raising awareness about their cause, encouraging students to join the club and actively raising funds for scholarships are just a few of the club's goals. According to the club's founding president Gennifer Delman, STF's most important aim is "to help enrich the lives of others around me and my sisters around the world." At a national scale, the club represents a benevolent force that unifies people of all backgrounds toward the noble goal of education. Girls in third world countries deserve the same right to be educated as American girls do; STF strives to assert this right and sponsor girls' eagerness to learn.
On campus, STF does not hesitate to assert itself. Teaming up with clubs like Hofstra AfriKan Society Association (HASA), Makin' Treble and Danceworks, the members of STF increase the range of their influence and reach out to Hofstra students more effectively. On a larger scale, the organization set up a benefit concert with musicians like Kat DeLuna and Shontelle, as well as a soiree sponsored by Victoria's Secret and O, the Oprah Magazine. It is evident that the club utilizes all means possible to raise awareness and reach out to potential volunteers. Gennifer assures us, "We hope to model our campus fundraisers after this idea that you can party, socialize and incorporate the things that you love into an exciting event. Fundraisers don't have to just be a boring bake sale in the atrium –they can be fun!"
The members' enthusiasm about STF is infectious. "Hearing STF's mission statement really hit home for me," says Sophomore Grace Gavilanes. "I'm the first to graduate college in my family, so I really want to help underprivileged girls get the same opportunity as I did." The club clearly strikes a chord with Hofstra's philanthropic student body, and why wouldn't it? STF is not only charitable, but it also represents a platform for networking and volunteering, thus meeting the needs of its devoted members.
How does one raise awareness without social networking sites? Along with word of mouth, of course, STF finds sites like Facebook and Twitter to be effective outlets for their cause. For more information about joining the cause, check out http://shesthefirst.org, or get involved on campus. Gennifer's final words are poignant, "Education gives every girl the chance to be first."