“I’m a big fan of Greek life at the University of Redlands,” says San Diego native Rebecca Bayer ’18.
A business administration major and spatial studies minor, Bayer became involved in the Greek community on campus during her sophomore year by joining Beta Lambda. As the current president of the University’s Panhellenic Council, the body of sororities on campus, Bayer’s responsibilities include meeting with the Inter-Fraternity Council president, co-hosting Greek council meetings, and making sure everything goes smoothly during Rush—a biannual event where sororities recruit new members.
Bayer says her desire to be involved in Greek life stemmed from a need for community. “I was driven to rush my sophomore year because I hadn’t really found my niche on campus yet,” she says. “I was missing the social aspect of the college experience and I found it in Greek life.”
While most universities adhere to national sorority boards, the Greek organizations at the University of Redlands are locally organized at the school and have been from their beginnings. “It’s really cool to have Greek organizations that are unique to Redlands; there’s a strong feeling of tradition,” says Bayer. “Since we’re not nationally organized, dues that we pay are a lot less and we have more freedom to govern ourselves.”
Aside from Greek life, Bayer has been a web ambassador in the University Communications Department for four years and studied abroad in London for four months. “Aside from learning about different cultures around Europe, I learned a lot about myself while I was abroad,” she says. “Being in a new foreign country can have its uncertainties, but tackling these uncertainties and gaining new experiences enabled me to walk away from my experience with more confidence, independence, and trust in myself.”
Bayer notes that the academic community at the U of R has been a high point in her experience as well. “I never feel like a number in any of my classes and I know that my professors genuinely care about me,” she says. “In my nonprofit management and human resources classes, professors Mara Winick and Jill Robinson have helped me envision my future career.”
Her spatial studies minor was a pleasant surprise. Bayer’s parents suggested a more “technical” minor as a way stand out amongst job applicants, and she was surprised computer science courses weren’t required. “I took my first class with Dr. Steven Moore and loved that it was so collaborative and project-based,” she says. “I’m a visual learner, so building a map that tells a story was so interesting to me.”
Looking forward, Bayer plans to return to San Diego and begin a career in consulting. “Now that I’ve gained enough knowledge, I feel confident enough to enter the workforce,” she says. “Redlands was a perfect place to come for college.”