We’re excited to share the first of an ongoing series of House Director Spotlights—interviews featuring our dedicated staff members who live and work in our Tri Delta houses, creating “homes away from home” for our collegiate members.
Meet Martha Malone, Tri Delta’s house director at our Beta Mu Chapter at Mississippi State University. Martha’s path to becoming a house director five and a half years ago may have been indirect, but she’s where she’s meant to be! She has always lived in the Starkville, Mississippi, area and attended Mississippi State—although she was not involved in Greek life when she was a student.
Why Tri Delta?
She became interested in the position through a chance encounter with a neighbor who serves as a volunteer advisor for the chapter. The neighbor spoke about the collegiate women and their community and philanthropic work. Martha recalls, “I found this incredibly intriguing. Having worked in the city’s recreation department for 25 years before transitioning to retail, I was looking for a fulfilling opportunity to pursue until retirement, rather than just another job. This sounded like the perfect opportunity for me.”
What do you love about being a house director?
“I love when the collegians visit me in my room. I enjoy developing relationships with the officers. I do things I know they love like taking their pictures and putting them into a slideshow on the dining room TV. When they come to me with issues, I acknowledge and guide them rather than telling them what to do.”
What does a typical week look like for you?
“I offer my help as needed and take care of the women to ensure they stay happy and healthy. A unique part of our house’s experience are sit-down dinners at the beginning of the week. This entails preparing food orders, deliveries, and setting up for the rest of the week. The middle of the week is dedicated to invoices. The workload varies depending on the chapter’s calendar, with the first semester being busier than the second. During slower times, I have more opportunities to connect and spend time with the women.”
How has being a house director contributed to your growth and development—professionally and/or personally?
“I have been incredibly touched by the love and appreciation shown by these women. I have earned the ‘Mama Martha’ nickname and I realize the impact I have on their lives. Being in front of these young women reminds me that I am making an impression, and I need to continuously improve to be a good role model.”
How has being a house director had a positive impact on your life?
“I have learned to be more gracious as I watch the students navigate their struggles with grace and gratitude. I have learned the importance of communication and it has helped in all aspects of my life.”
Martha adds, “Kindness at Tri Delta is genuine and meaningful. Tri Delta Housing staff gently guides and steers you with respect, even when correcting you. If I ever leave this house, I know that no one will treat me as well as Tri Delta.
“It’s more than a job. The Tri Delta house is your home.”
What advice do you have for those interested in being a house director?
“My trick for connecting with the women is to let the women come to you, be clear about expectations and be open to criticism.
“In my first year, I received a lot of support from other house directors and Tri Delta. Now, it’s funny that I’m considered a go-to subject matter expert! I try my best, and Tri Delta appreciates that. The sorority really cares about its members. Always go the extra mile to support Tri Delta, and they’ll always support you in return.”
HOUSE DIRECTOR CAREER OPPORTUNITIES
Are you ready to take on the role of a Tri Delta house director? Visit Tri Delta’s Housing Careers page to start your journey today!