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APO Pledge Week

Alexa Doggett reveals details surrounding her attempts to get into the national honor society for college students studying theater.

My "Dress like a current Broadway show" outfit- Velma Kelly in Chicago!
Alpha Beta Gamma Delta Epsilon… As I begin to type this blog entry, my mind truly lies elsewhere. Beginning last Monday, life just got a little more Greek. Well, more honorable so to speak, because it's APO pledge week!

So… what is APO? Many who read my blog may know the answer to that. APO stands for Alpha Psi Omega, the national honor society for college students studying theater, and at CCU we are the Omicron Beta Chapter. In order to be admitted you must accumulate 30 points through performing and working technically on shows, as well as maintaining a certain GPA and showing honorable presence in the department.

Since I have earned enough points during my first two years at Coastal, I was finally eligible to pledge. But joining doesn't come so easy. Although points have made us able to join, we must prove ourselves worthy through a week of tests, all culminating with a final initiation. I don't have any idea what's in store as the theater kids get free-reign over the humanities building in the middle of a Friday night, but I do know a bit of what I have to do this week. Each night we will receive emails with specific instructions. Last night began with a short "Welcome" meeting, where we were assigned our bigs for the week. Our bigs will guide us through if we have any questions and are also going to be very helpful at this eventual initiation should we make it that far. After I got my notebook, my "Property of…" button (that I must wear at all times!), and the crap scared out of me, I received an email with a link to a hidden youtube video, where Jigsaw (from the famed Saw horror film) let us in on a few secrets.

First off, we are required to carry around a small notebook with us at all times. It must contain a list of the entire Greek alphabet with names and symbols, 12-14 lines of A Midsummer Night's Dream, a contact sheet with numbers of all APO members, and the answers to various questions we receive the night before. Typically the questions revolve around members of APO - riddles describe who to find and what to ask them. "Why did you get involved in theater?" or "What's your favorite production at CCU?" are on the right track. The very last section of our elaborate notebook is a list of all of the current APO members and what productions they have performed in and/or tech'ed within the last two years at Coastal, which we'll need to have memorized for initiation night, as well as the Greek alphabet and our Shakespeare.

Throughout the week we must also participate in different theme days where we dress up and take pictures with our big.

Monday: Dress like a Professor Day
Tuesday: Dress like a 90's TV Character
Wednesday: Dress like a character from a current Broadway Musical
Thursday: Dress like your Big!
Friday: Dress in APO Colors

So if I do make it in, what exactly does APO do? It must be something worthwhile, otherwise why would I be trying so hard to make it in. Not only does the small line of text saying that you were in such an honor society look good on your resume (think "real" jobs and MFA programs, not your talent one), but APO does some really wonderful things around campus and to help out the community. They put on new play readings, some cabarets, and are slowly starting to branch out and do more outreach work such as mother daughter teas or non-profit fundraisers. Each month an APO member is given a "project" to head up, so it teaches leadership and creative skills while bettering our school's surroundings. Quite the group to be a part of!

So cross your fingers for me! I'll try and report back after the week is over with results. That is… if I make it through pledge week!


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