Beauty pageants often conjure images of good looks, swimsuit competitions and world peace.
This is not the case with Miss Greek, the University of Colorado’s sorority and fraternity charity fundraising pageant, which will be held Wednesday at the Coors Event Center.
“One of the most important things the Greek community does is philanthropy work,” said junior Roman Payan, the event’s co-philanthropy chair. “I feel it’s great when the community at large sees the Greek organization coming together to support a great cause.”
What: University of Colorado’s Miss Greek 2010
When: 7 p.m. Wednesday
Where: Coors Events Center, CU campus, Boulder
Cost: $15 donation
The fifth-annual Miss Greek event has raised more than $220,000 over the past four years, with proceeds going to local nonprofit organizations Clinica Family Health Services and the Tennyson Center for Children.
Each of CU’s sororities nominates one sister who contributes to the community and embodies the mission of the house, said Payan, who is a member in Sigma Pi-Zeta.
“The pageant is not based on beauty, but rather character,” Payan said. “We feel it’s important for each sorority to nominate a girl who stands up to their values and standards.”
Chi Omega nominated sophomore Hollyne Gillach as a student who exemplifies the sorority’s core values.
“Being in a pageant of this sort means a lot to me, because growing up I was raised in family who always donated to charities,” Gillach said. “Helping others brings me satisfaction that I can’t find elsewhere.”
Gillach tutors two elementary students in Boulder in her free time, helps organize food drives and helps feed the homeless with different churches in the Denver area.
Payan said contestants each will perform a talent — such as dance, cheerleading, singing and even a hip-hop rap from Junior Aubrey Kerr of Pi Beta Phi.
Over the years, Kerr has helped with various events that have benefited charities such as the Invisible Children Foundation and the I Have a Dream Foundation.
“I think this pageant shows that the women in the Greek community are beautiful not only on the outside, but on the inside, too,” Kerr said. “We’re not just part of sororities to party, we’re here to give back to the community as well.”
Judges for the pageant include Mike Bohn, CU’s athletic director; Marc Stine, CU’s Greek Advocate; Josh “Black Prez” Madry, a recording artist and featured performer at the event; Susan Wortman, development director of Clinica Family Health Services; and Terra Bohemer, director of Tennyson Center for Children.
“We’re really proud to be a part of such a special event that brings Greeks and non-Greeks together,” Payan said. “It’s great to see our greater community come together for one common cause.”