I’m proud to be able to help bring something here that helps people of color connect more.
She departs BSU on May 18 as the first president of the inaugural Alpha Kappa Alpha (AKA) chapter, Upsilon Iota, the school’s first-ever black Greek letter organization. This past Dec. 8, the chapter inducted its first Bridgewater students.
“I’m proud to be able to help bring something here that helps people of color connect more,” Brigitta said.
For more than a decade, Diane Bell, internship program director, had championed the idea of bringing AKA to Bridgewater. Working alongside Bell, Brigitta played an important role in landing the sorority through marketing and recruitment activities.
“I kept rallying the girls, explaining to them that this is our vision and a great moment for Bridgewater State,” Brigitta said.
Now that AKA has found a home at BSU, Brigitta recognizes just how monumental it is.
“We are the first state school in Massachusetts to have an AKA chapter,” she said. “Our vision finally came true. We now have something on campus that not only people of color can join, but girls who want to make a difference.”
Making a difference has long been a theme in Brigitta’s life. As an undergraduate she participated in Jumpstart, a national early education organization that trains college students to serve preschool children in under-resourced communities. At BSU, students in Jumpstart provide services to children in Brockton.
“I love kids, I love working with kids,” Brigitta said. “I was able to help kids that were being held back because they were delayed. We were the people who helped them get caught up.”
The experience gained through Jumpstart aligns well with Brigitta’s career goal of becoming a pediatrician. She plans to build off of her health studies degree and attend medical school. She currently is exploring which school is the best fit.
Brigitta’s interest in becoming a doctor dates to her childhood.
When her family moved from her native Italy to the Bronx, New York, she struggled with language and cultural differences.
It was her family doctor at the time who provided assistance, helping her find her way.
“She didn’t discriminate,” Brigitta said. “In some ways, I felt like she was my second mom because of the connection she made with us.”
As a pediatrician she hopes to create those types of connections with her patients.
While looking forward to medical school, Brigitta pauses for a moment to look back.
“I came to Bridgewater because a family friend told me about it, what a great state school it was, and assured me that they would help me graduate, to try it out, that I would love it,” Brigitta said.
The friend was right.
“I decided to come here and I ended up liking it. At BSU everyone knows you on a first-name basis,” she said.
For Brigitta that intimacy made all the difference.
“In college, every day is a different adventure. There are so many storms but you figure it out as you go,” Brigitta said.
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