Tag Archives: greek

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New fraternity coming to campus

Just a week after formal spring fraternity rush, a new fraternity has arrived on U of L’s campus. The Delta Tau Delta fraternity has begun meeting with potential new founding fathers and members in hopes of ultimately forming a chapter here at U of L.

Better known nationally as the Delts, the 133-chapter fraternity values truth, courage, faith and power. Their philanthropy work benefits the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, focusing on finding a cure for Type 1 diabetes.

Robbie Erickson, the project lead for the expansion at U of L, says that the fraternity’s mission statement is “Committed to Lives of Excellence.” “Excellence is not something that can be accomplished, rather it is something to aim for in everything we do,” Erickson explained.

The Delts are looking to offer something unique to men at U of L, saying that Delta Tau Delta is not the “stereotypical ‘frat’ experience.”

“If there is someone who has tried Greek life but has not found what they are looking for, or if someone has never even thought of the idea of Greek life, then we offer an exciting opportunity to start something in their own image,” said Erickson. “When we talk about starting something new, we are really looking to challenge that negative stereotype and to do something positive for the entire Louisville community.”

Val Servino, junior public health major and the first founding father of the fraternity, agrees with Erickson. “It is my hope that the U of L Delts can create a safe space for all students, regardless of their identity or affiliation. Greek life is often seen as an opportunity only for the straight white and cis-gendered. I would like to change that perception.”

Servino looks forward to founding the fraternity, saying, “It is great leadership experience and the guys I spoke to seemed cool.” In his eyes, he has two sets of responsibilities in his role as founding father: technical and big picture.

“Technically, to meet set requirements so that the U of L colony of Delta Tau Delta can become an official fraternity chapter. Big picture, I would say to be a role model and embody Delt values,” said Servino.

When asked why bring the fraternity to Louisville, Erickson responded, “It is a great time to be a Cardinal! Between the victories on and off the court and the amazing student population, Louisville is the place to be in the state of Kentucky. We have a rich history in the state of Kentucky including an award-winning chapter at Morehead State, a great group of men at Western Kentucky, and a storied and historical chapter in Lexington, not to mention the current and past governor of Kentucky who are Delts. We are honored to be adding yet another amazing group at a fantastic school like U of L.”

The fraternity will be meeting potential new members in the SAC  for the next month. A formal new member ceremony will take place on Feb. 14, followed by officer training.

The Delts’ expansion process has just begun, according to Erickson. “Our goal is to meet with as many people as possible in the four weeks we are on campus and when it is done we have a colony of the best and brightest students and leaders. We are giving men the opportunity to leave a legacy and start something new; something that they will be able to look back on twenty years from now and see how far its come. Following expansion, one consultant stays with the new colony and trains the men in areas such as operations, finances, and values based education.

“It really is like starting a brand new business. This is an entrepreneurial opportunity for those who would be inclined to such things.  The consultant makes sure that these men are ready to begin running a fraternity.”

For more information on Delta Tau Delta, visit their website at Delts.org or talk to them at their table in the SAC.

 

Photo by Olivia Krauth/Louisville Cardinal

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The Do’s and Dont’s of Recruitment

By Caitlyn Crenshaw–timthumb

One of the many questions facing incoming and returning women as the summer nears its end is have you thought about going through sorority recruitment?  Some girls may jump in ready to start out on a new experience either for the first time in college or for something new as a returning student.  Whether you are an incoming freshmen or a returning student, knowing what to expect throughout the week of sorority recruitment will help to ease your nerves and be confident in whatever happens on bid day.

Before I give you advice on what to expect throughout the week of panhellenic recruitment, I want you to know why I encourage everyone to think about signing up for sorority recruitment.  One of the best decisions that I made coming into U of L was to sign up for sorority recruitment.  To those of you who are uncertain, I encourage you to take a chance and just maybe, you will not only open yourself up to many opportunities during your college career, but also discover the meaning of best friends and sisterhood.

The four days of recruitment are divided into themes for each day: finance night, philanthropy night, skit night and preference night.  On the first day, finance night, expect to meet a lot of people very quickly.  Don’t be intimidated by the conversations, because chances are the sorority women you are talking to are nervous as well.  Philanthropy night is centered on each house’s individual philanthropy, which is at the heart of the entire greek community.  On skit night, each house will put on a short skit showing the personality of their chapter and what they are truly all about.  Don’t be afraid to get into it and have fun.

On preference night, you will find a different atmosphere than the rest of the week.  This night is where each house gives you a glimpse of their sisterhood and why they want you to be a part of it.  You will hear girls say how they have found a home in their chapter.  When they say this to you, they are not reciting from a script.  They sincerely have found a home in the friendship of their sisters and the community of greek life.

Listen to your Gammi Chis. These girls are your recruitment counselors throughout the week and will be with you every step of the way.  You can talk to them about anything and about every house.  They will give unbiased advice.  They took this position because they want to help you have fun, feel comfortable, and find a chapter that you can call home.

It doesn’t matter what letters these girls belong to on bid day because they all have something in common: they are there for you throughout the process of recruitment.

When you sign up for recruitment, there will be guidelines on what you should wear each day.  For example, black, cocktail dresses for preference night are encouraged.  Follow the guidelines, but do not be afraid to be unique and show your personal style.

Exude confidence and stand out. With so many girls going through recruitment, it can be hard for the women inside to remember everyone’s name and something special about them.  It is up to you to make yourself memorable and make the women on the inside want to get to know you more personally.  It is important to be yourself, so that when you have that memorable conversation at one of the houses, it is a real connection with the women of that chapter.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions, no matter how many you have to ask.  It’s understandable to be curious or confused.  Ask the women you are talking to questions such as, “What made you want to go greek?” and “What would you ask in recruitment if you could do it again?”  The more questions you ask the more at ease you will feel at a house.  The women on the inside will be completely honest with you and want you to end up at the right house for you.

Like so many of you, I did not know what to expect throughout the week of panhellenic sorority recruitment.  The best advice is to be flexible and embrace the uncertainty of each day.  Inevitably, a schedule will be lost or incorrect, but it will work out.  Going into each day with an open mind about each of the sorority houses will only make each day fun and help calm your nerves.

When you start to feel overwhelmed or that maybe sorority recruitment was a bad idea, don’t give up just yet.  At the time of recruitment, you may not see the meaning to the madness, but I promise you, one day you will see it.  And on that day, you will happy you stayed throughout the week.
The best advice that someone gave me was to imagine yourself in sweatpants watching a fun movie cuddled up on the couch of the sorority house with the girls you are talking to throughout the week.  Wherever you end up on bid day, know that the girls wearing the letters that are soon to be yours as well saw the qualities in you that they value and embody.  They are genuinely excited and thrilled when you come running with your bid.  This bid card is the end of recruitment, but it is only the beginning of your life as part of a sisterhood.

features@louisvillecardinal.com
Photo by Andrew Nathan/The Louisville Cardinal

The Sigma Chi house celebrated their win of an international award this week, which they will formally receive at a ceremony in Saint Louis, Mo. later this month.

U of L’s Sigma Chi chapter wins interfraternity award

By Will Ryan–

The Sigma Chi house celebrated their win of an international award this week, which they will formally receive at a ceremony in Saint Louis, Mo. later this month.

On April 2, it was announced that U of L’s chapter of the Sigma Chi fraternity is being presented with the 2013 Chapter Award of Distinction from the North-American Interfraternity Conference.

The North-American Interfraternity Conference serves as the national governing body for 14 of the 19 men’s social fraternities that call U of L their home. According to NIC President and CEO Pete Smithhisler, the Chapter Award of Distinction “recognizes outstanding achievement across the board.” This distinction is granted annually to five chapters across the continent and Sigma Chi  is the first chapter from U of L to have been honored in the award’s 11-year history.

According to Mr. Smithhisler, the Chapter Award for Distinction is intended to “shine a bright light on what the chapter is doing. The other chapters on campus will be inspired to promote excellence as well.”

When asked about being recognized, junior Josh Henderson, the president of U of L’s Sigma Chi chapter explains that “the members act like we were taught during the initiation process, which is to promote character, campus, and community. I think that played a big part in winning this award.”

“The coolest part of this process,” says Henderson, a biology major, “is that the national Sigma Chi headquarters applied for us. I had no idea that we were even being considered until I got a phone call saying that we won.” The Sigma Chis draw national attention through annual philanthropy events such as Sigmapalooza, a concert benefiting Kosair Children’s Hospital, Derby Days, a week-long festival that raises money towards the Huntsman Cancer Institute, and the Blanket Drive, which this year donated 2,356 blankets to homeless shelters around Louisville.

Jeff Lamb, U of L’s Inter-Fraternity President, proudly promotes Greek Life. “This last fall the (Greek) men did over 25,000 hours of service, retention rates are higher by about 20%,” he reports, “and graduation rates are higher for Greek members by about 19 percent. It seems as though Greek life is much more beneficial than many students believe.”

When asked about the future of Greek Life, Henderson of Sigma Chi predicted “I think Jeff Lamb would agree with me in saying that this award will help Greek Life grow at U of L by bringing the Greeks some positive attention. I’m sure that some of U of L’s other chapters will earn this distinction too.”

A group of Sigma Chi members will travel to Saint Louis on April 14 to attend the NIC annual meeting, where they will formally be presented with their award.

news@louisvillecardinal.com
Photo by Simon Isham/The Louisville Cardinal

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Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity wins Student Organization of the Year

By Lee Cole–

U of L has been giving out student awards for 13 years, in a number of categories, including the Cardinal Award of Excellence – Scholar/Leader Award and the Harold Adams Award. Every year, one student organization at the University of Louisville receives the prestigious honor of being named Student Organization of the Year. This year’s recipient was the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, Kappa Zeta chapter.

Established on Louisville’s campus in 1995, Pikes have been prominent community servants and student leaders for some time now. Pi Kappa Alpha won the same award in 2010 and won the Spirit of Service Award last year. In addition, they won the IFC Fraternity of the Year award both this year and 2010.

Pikes are also involved in Student Government. External Vice President and Junior chemistry major Austin Schwenker told the Cardinal, “Pi Kappa Alpha’s members strive to be active student leaders on our campus; while there always seems to be a few members involved in SGA, our members are diverse and well-rounded, leading not only the organizations that they have helped establish, but those that they connect with and have a passion for.” Schwenker went on to say, “We encourage our members to be involved on campus and to share their talents and leadership abilities not only to help better the university and their respective organizations, but to also help them grow as individuals — something I believe the selection committee recognized.”

Pi Kappa Alpha has been involved in numerous community service events as well as campus/student related projects. One community service event, called Street Academy, pairs a Pi Kappa Alpha brother with inner city youth in need of a role model. Members acted as big brothers to many of these kids, teaching by example and instilling them with the kind of values that led to their current, esteemed recognition.

President David Osborne, a senior in the Speed School, said of Pi Kappa Alpha’s community service: “Pike has members that volunteer at Cochran Elementary School as tutors and athletic coaches each week. Pike also directed parking during St. James Art Fair at Cochran Elementary School, which raised over $22,000 for the underprivileged school. Moreover, Pikes donated over 25 Thanksgiving Baskets to underprivileged families from Cochran. Throughout the 2011-2012 scholastic year, Pikes have also served as mentors in the Street Academy of Louisville program.” Pike’s devotion to community service was a major factor in receiving this honor, with over 3800 hours of volunteer work over the 2011-2012 scholastic year.

Dozens of organizations vie for the honor of Student Organization of the Year, and the competition is keen. Groups are considered in a number of categories, and while many excelled, Pi Kappa Alpha has come out on top as the most outstanding. With these accolades and merits, we can expect to see Pi Kappa Alpha taking home the award for many years to come.

Junior chemistry major Austin Scwenker and freshman engineering major Shelby LaFollette raises some L before performing PIKE90X at Fryberger 2012.

lcole@louisvillecardinal.com
Photos courtesy of Pi Kappa Alpha

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Kissing Away Cancer: A Valentine party for charity

By Laura Diaz–

In their search for a breast cancer awareness fundraiser, Zeta Tau Alpha and Beta Theta Pi worked together to organize Kiss Away Cancer, which was a fair held at the Red Barn on Thursday, Feb. 9. Both Greek organizations share the same philanthropy — breast cancer awareness.

Entrance was $5 at the door or $1 if you were wearing pink. Massages, caricatures, face painting, ring toss, a duck pond and a raffle were some of the activities offered. However, the most appealing activity was the kissing booth. By paying $1, people had the chance to get a kiss on the cheek by a Zeta or Beta.

Some people heard about the event from flyers, such as marketing major sophomore Courtney Craig. “The event had a pretty good turn out. I liked what I ate, plus it’s very conveniently located,” she said.

Besides posted flyers, there was a Facebook event and both Zetas and Betas passed out flyers on campus.

“Within the first two minutes, people came up to get drawings,” said caricaturist Jordan Williamson, a freshman majoring in art. He liked the event and said he would do some caricatures again.

When talking about how difficult and time consuming organizing an event could be, Zeta philanthropy chair and junior English major Emily Mauldin said “it’s not tedious if you enjoy doing it, and I like it.” Mauldin would repeat it. She also added, “Betas are helpful and have a good attitude. Most of them are participating.”

The DJ was playing popular songs while people were dancing, eating and participating in the activities. The pink tablecloths and balloons along with the music and games gave it a great atmosphere.

features@louisvillecardinal.com
Photos: Eric Voet/The Louisville Cardinal