The Trek

We’re leaving this Saturday, June 7, 2014 to build a school for girls in Elena Maria, Nicaragua. Mizzou’s Circle of Sisterhood has been working hard to pull the trek together, and we couldn’t be more gratified to go on this journey. We look forward to telling you all about our experience in Nicaragua, but for now we would like to introduce the women who will be trekking to Elena Maria.

morgan domijanMorgan Domijan
Hometown: Dallas, Texas
Chapter: Pi Beta Phi
Major: Elementary Education
Age: 20

Circle of Sisterhood provides an amazing experience that allows Mizzou women to fight for women’s education and show love to uplift girls’ confidence. As an Elementary Education major, I realize how valuable an education is worth. Opening this school in Nicaragua will supply so many amazing opportunities for a brighter future. It is such an honor to be a part of this extraordinary change that gives hope to a community in Nicaragua. I look forward to all the immeasurable smiles and love to be spread, while making unforgettable memories with the community of Nicaragua and the incredible members of Mizzou Circle of Sisterhood.

Kelli FarlowKelli Farlow
Hometown: Lansing, Ill.
Chapter: Sigma Kappa
Major: Social Work
Age: 18

I am going on the trek because I wanted to experience a different culture. I am looking forward to meeting my host family. I cannot wait to meet the children, as well.

Abby FloresAbby Flores
Hometown: Chesterfield, Mo.
Chapter: (Pi Chi)
Major: Spanish and Biology
Age: 20

I chose to go because I believe it is important that every girl has the opportunity to be their best selves. These girls in Nicaragua will now have a school where they can receive an education and grow. I have been blessed to receive an education here at Mizzou and hope to help others find their inspiration just as I have found mine. I am also excited to be able to use my Spanish and learn about the culture of Nicaragua.

Kelly RichardsonKelly Richardson
Hometown: Columbia, Mo.
Chapter: Alpha Chi Omega
Major: Chemical Engineering-Biochemistry
Age: 19

I chose to go on the trek because international affairs have always been a passion of mine, and I love being involved in my sorority and PHA’s Circle of Sisterhood.

Madeleine PtacinMadeleine Ptacin
Hometown: Arlington Heights, Ill.
Chapter: Sigma Kappa
Major: Journalism
Age: 20

I’m most excited to practice my Spanish and learn about the culture.

Sara DriscollSara Driscoll
Hometown: Chicago, Ill.
Chapter: Sigma Kappa
Major: Journalism
Age: 21

I chose to go on the trek because I want girls in Nicaragua to be fulfilled and enlightened by their education and all of the opportunities it presents. This is a chance to make an impact on a young girls life, and I am honored to be able to be part of something so amazing.

SarahTriggSarah Trigg
Hometown: Wildwood, Mo.
Chapter: Kappa Delta
Major: Health Sciences
Age: 21

I chose to go on this trek because I wanted to change the lives of young girls in Nicaragua. I’ve been so fortunate with my education that it would seem selfish not to take this opportunity to uplift others! I cannot wait to meet all the women in the community!

Jacqueline PabisJacqueline Pabis
Hometown: Downers Grove, Ill.
Chapter: Alpha Delta Pi
Major: Psychology
Age: 20

I chose to apply for this trek because I want to help change others’ lives. As crazy as it sounds, I’m so excited to go for a week without power, without normal meals, and without my every day lifestyle that I seem to take advantage of. Although our mission is to change their lives by promoting education, I really think they will make all of us so much better people as well!

Abigail SmithAbigail Smith
Hometown: Bartlett, Ill.
Chapter: (Pi Chi)
Major: Human Development and Family Studies
Age: 20

This trek is extremely important to me and I am beyond excited for this opportunity.  Not only do I want to travel and see another country, but I believe it is critical, that every individual, no matter age, gender, or cultural background, deserves an equal right to an education, and I want to be apart of something that makes that happen!

Jordan WarrenJordan Warren
Hometown: Durango Colo.
Chapter: Sigma Kappa
Major: Business- Accounting
Age: 20

I have been very fortunate with the education and opportunities I have received and I want to help other girls in countries that don’t value education for girls. I’m most excited about meeting the kids in the community and learning about their culture.

Paige TenkhoffPaige Tenkhoff
Hometown: Franklin, Tenn.
Chapter: Pi Beta Phi
Degree: Strategic Communication, Bachelor of Journalism
Age: 22

I care very deeply about Circle of Sisterhood’s cause to educate and empower young women in the developing world. While I believe we can provide resources for this community and their system of education, I also think they have a lot to teach us. I am looking forward to the cultural exchange we will have with the people of Elena Maria, Nicaragua.

On behalf of Mizzou’s Circle of Sisterhood and PHA we wish you all a safe and empowering journey to Nicaragua. We’re so thankful for your dedication to our organization; because of you this trek is made possible.

Mukhtar Mai: local hero making global impact

There was no school for girls in the rural town of Meerwala in Pakistan, so Mukhtar Mai did what all the peasant women in such villages were expected to do: house work. She grew up a normal Pakistani girl until she was raped and humiliated by members of the high-status Mastoi clan of Pakistan. 

After being victimized by the clan, experiencing the humiliation of publicized rape as a cover-up for the clan’s own crime against her brother, Mukhtar could have given up. But instead, she decided to take a stand.

Support and encouragement from both her family and a local Muslim leader transformed her embarrassment into anger – all it took was $8,300 compensation from President Pervez Musharraf for her to start making a difference.

Instead of using the compensation money for herself, Mukhtar built a school for girls in Meerwala. As she gained publicity, the Pakistani government tried to hush her, afraid their corruption would be revealed to the rest of the world. However, Mukhtar would not be silenced. Instead, she continued raising awareness and receiving contributions.

Before long, Mukhtar had built a high school, a boys’ school, and a school smack-dab in the middle of the most dangerous gang-populated area of her village. She even operates an aid group and a transportation system and has developed a dairy farm to support her schools. 

Because of Mukhtar, rape is now raised as a more serious issue in Pakistan. Though statistical data does not exist, rape crimes have become rare since her work began.

Mukhtar’s accomplishments in the face of powerful odds against her have inspired a movement.   

One world. One Sisterhood.

To learn more about Mukhtar and others who are making a difference, check out the book Half the Sky by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. 

Mizzou Sorority Women: Whole-hearted for Half the Sky

Girls all over the world are forced to sell their bodies to support their families by the time they are 15 years old

…and Mizzou’s sorority women are fighting for change.  Called to action by the book Half the Sky, the work of international Circle of Sisterhood founder Ginny Carroll, and the National Panhellenic Conference, women are coming together each week for the second year to help uplift underprivileged girls and women around the world.

A school in Senegal, scholarships for underprivileged women in Cambodia, and a home for blind women in Ethiopia are just a few examples of the international Circle of Sisterhood’s impact since its foundation in 2009.  To find out more about Circle of Sisterhood, the book Half the Sky, and to learn how you can make a difference, visit 

Keep up with Mizzou’s branch of Circle of Sisterhood by liking our Facebook page and following us on Twitter !

Sorority women, wanna get involved? We meet every Tuesday at 7 p.m. in Lefevre 112.  See you there!


Why the Circle of Sisterhood?

Education is the answer for many of the global issues affecting women.

Millions of girls around the world will never have the chance to go to school, unless they get help.

In the mid 1800s in America, women stood together for the right to go to college.

Over 160 years later, college educated women are standing together to remove barriers to education for girls and women around the world.

One World. One Sisterhood.