How alpha Kappa Delta Phi Saved Memorial Day

For the sisters of Alpha Kappa Delta Phi, Memorial Day means everything. Each year, the national sorority invites hundreds of undergraduate students from its 60 local chapters to its National Convention for National Board member Jennifer Jin calls “a weekend of sisterhood between our undergraduate and alumnae sisters.” That weekend involves everything from bonding activities, to workshops, to learning sessions, to community service, to career development workshops and more.

But 2020 had other plans. This year, Memorial Day weekend fell just as the COVID-19 pandemic was ramping up. AKDPhi’s National Board was forced to cancel its in-person event.

The sisters quickly rallied into action. They needed a virtual solution—one that could support a variety of concurrent talks and workshops, while also keeping audience members consistently energized in between them. It was immediately clear that tired, old videoconferencing tools wouldn’t do.

Keeping spirits high

“I was immediately impressed with the Run The World platform based on the engagement-based features like cocktail party and one-on-one networking,” Jin says. “I knew this was an app made for events, and not just another video conferencing software.”

Using Run the World, Jin and her colleagues were able to host multiple, simultaneous workshops that could be accessed by either laptop or phone at any time throughout the weekend. The interactive talk rooms connected both speakers and audience using emojis and live chat. At any given time, three workshops were happening simultaneously—with over 100 sisters in each.

The sisters could reach out to each other through private messages, or meet new people using Cocktail Party’s mix-and-match sessions. And group chats, running throughout the events, kept the sisters connected and engaged in between speakers and workshops.

Run the World’s flexibility allowed the sisters to host a wide range of group activities for both body and mind. Fitness sessions and calligraphy classes fought off video-conferencing fatigue and kept everyone refreshed throughout the weekend.

Best of all? Setting it all up was as easy as 1, 2, 3.

“I loved how I could just plug in my event information and have Run The World generate a beautiful registration site and homepage,” Jin says. “The combination of the web browser and the mobile app makes it extremely easy for any speaker or attendee to join from any device, and the format of the talks really encourages engagement from the audience.”

A rousing success

In the end, even a pandemic proved no match for aKDPhi’s ingenuity and determination. Of the 785 sisters who registered for the event, 624 attendees showed up for the weekend’s round-the-clock slate of learning, sharing, connecting, and growing. “We received so many compliments about Run The World from our convention attendees and knew that they had a great time for our first ever virtual conference,” Jin says.