I am so incredibly excited to meet you all this spring. My name is Taylor McKeown, I’m a sophomore pre-law Psychology and Rhetoric & Writing major from Houston, Texas, and I am the Recruitment Chair for Spring 2018. Texas Sweethearts is not only an amazing organization, but its a place to call home on the 40 acres. I can’t wait to meet you guys and have y’all see a glimpse into this org that I love so so much!
Although I am a die-hard fan of UT who bleeds burnt orange, it wasn’t always that way. In fact, throughout high school I often told people, “I’m not 100% decided on where I want to go to college, but I definitely will not go to UT”. Having been born and raised in Houston for my entire life, I desperately wanted to go to school outside of Texas and live on the east coast in glamorous New York City. But luckily, life had different plans for me. During the end of my junior year, after a lot of tears, I reluctantly decided I was going to attend the University of Texas. And although I thought I might have been making a huge mistake at the time, I cannot express just how truly thankful I am to have ended up here on the 40 acres.
Just a few weeks before I moved to Austin and left behind the friends, family, and city I had called home for my entire life, my brother passed away. Being a 3 hour car drive away from home vs a 3 hour plane flight away in NYC turned out to be the biggest blessing during this time, and when I arrived on campus to start my freshman year, I yearned to be a part of an organization that I could call home. I found that with Texas Sweethearts.
By chance, I ran into a Sweetheart active who handed me a flyer encouraging me to come to an event they were having that night. I wasn’t convinced that I wanted to join a spirit organization, so I was reluctant to go. But, for some reason, I decided to put myself out there and see what I thought. I walked into the event and was astounded by how many girls were there, but I pushed through my intimidation and nerves and began talking to different actives and recruits. It was during that hour that I knew Texas Sweethearts was the org I wanted to call home during my time at UT. Not only were they diverse, a super important factor to me, but the girls were so smart, funny, confident and genuine, and I felt a feeling of home amongst strangers in a new and unfamiliar city. It was this feeling that let me know that Texas Sweethearts was the organization for me and that ultimately gave me the motivation and confidence to try out again when I didn’t make it my first time. Although I was scared, having the courage to step out and try recruitment again was the best decision I’ve made during my time at UT.
What I’ve found in Texas Sweethearts is a second family. I am surrounded by such empowering, courageous, smart, brave and authentic women, and I am forever grateful for the bonds I proudly share with my Sweetheart sisters. Texas Sweethearts has changed my life in so many ways, and although that sounds cliché, it’s the honest truth. I found not only girls I can be goofy around and that can make me laugh so hard my stomach hurts, but I found girls who will study until 3 am on campus with me before midterms, girls who held my hand and comforted me after dumb boys broke my heart, girls who I can open up to about my life and my insecurities, and girls who build me up during my times of struggle. I don’t know where I would be without these amazing women I have met, and I owe it all to this incredible organization for bringing me to them.
This is why it is such an honor for me to serve as the Spring 2018 recruitment chair and help select the new class of extraordinary women I know will contribute so much to our organization. Again, I can’t wait to meet all of you guys, and I’m so excited for recruitment to finally kick off! Spring 2018, we’re ready for ya!
Spring 2018 Recruitment Chair