Expanding our Impact 

I joined Pi Phi at Michigan Beta (University of Michigan, Go Blue!) as a freshman in Fall 2003.  My mom had been part of fraternity/sorority life when she went to college, and it was something I was always interested in. Pi Phi was the perfect fit!  

I immediately resonated with our philanthropic focus of literacy because reading had a huge influence on me as a child. My parents always read to my sister and I before bed and throughout the summers; we were the cool kids who loved going to the library to check out books and complete the summer reading contests. 

In our communities, literacy is such an important topic to address. I’ve watched children attend our Fraternity Day of Service signature events and seen the look of pride and excitement on their face when they receive their first book. Everyone deserves to experience that moment and the worlds that are opened because of books. 

Pi Beta Phi Foundation provides the resources necessary to support the Fraternity Day of Service events and other literacy initiatives in communities across North America. Beyond Pi Phi’s literacy initiatives, our Foundation provides valuable support to sisters. A Pi Phi scholarship can provide the funds needed for a sister to continue her education. Assistance from an Emma Harper Turner Fund Grant can provide relief at a time when sisters might need it most.  


I made my decision to become a Pi Beta Phi Foundation monthly donor at my second convention. At the time, I thought being a donor was out of my budget. However, the Foundation continued to share the impact of its work throughout the weekend, and I knew I wanted to be part of that support.  They shared how becoming a monthly donor can start with as little as $10 a month and I realized it was something I could do.  

Today, my family continues to support our Foundation because I believe in the work of the Fraternity, the impact we have on others and the opportunities we provide. Our organization provides valuable support to both our collegiate and alumnae members through leadership opportunities, programming such as Leading with Values® and literacy initiatives. My experience as a collegian – and now my experience as an alumna – are a direct result of funds raised through our Foundation.

I never would have expected to find this level of sisterhood and opportunity for growth in Pi Phi and I’m very grateful for the leaders who have invested in me. The Fraternity needs the support of every sister, every year in order to continue to provide those experiences and expand the reach of our impact. 

Interested in becoming a monthly donor? Your recurring gift helps ensure membership in Pi Phi remains a fulfilling, transformative experience for women rooted in shared experiences, enduring values and Sincere Friendships. Learn more. 

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About The Author

Melissa Denning Perez

Melissa Denning Perez is a Michigan Beta from the University of Michigan.