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Baseball 01 Morse Code 02 Automobile 03 Ferris Wheel 04 Telephone 05 Football 06 Jeans 07 Airplane 08 Camera 09 Zipper 10 Bottle Cap 11 Radio 12 Lipstick 13 Mousetrap 14 Duckpin Bowling 15 Computer 16 Elvis Presley 17 Skee Ball 18 Rocketship 19 Television 20 Cheesesteak 21 Telecaster 22 Bazooka 23 Flux Capacitor 24 Facebook 25




VOL. 4 / ISSUE 015 / SUMMER 2011

Staying in Touch is Important.

You can get more involved with AFLV by checking us out on Facebook, Twitter, & LinkedIn Also, read our blog. It’s great: Facebook: Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values Twitter: @AFLV LinkedIn: Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values Engage the conversation: #GreekChat

AFLV is listening when you’re talking about student leadership and fraternity / sorority life. Follow us, connect with us, and jump in the conversation. We want to stay in touch.

Connections is the official publication of the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values. The views expressed by contributors, authors and advertisers are not necessarily those of the Association. // AFLV encourages the submission of content to: Director of Marketing & Communication Lea Hanson Submit advertising queries to: Lea Hanson • Director of M & C 970/372.1174 888/855.8670 Connections Magazine is published by AFLV for our member subscribers four times each year. Submission Deadlines: Winter 2012 • 365 Recruitment: December 5 Spring 2012 • New Member Development: February 20 Summer 2012 • The Flip Side: What do others really think?: June 25 Send address corrections to: Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values 420 South Howes Bldg B; Suite 200 Fort Collins, CO 80524 970/372.1174 888/855.8670 Creative Director • Layout & Design Steve Whitby / CAMPUSPEAK, Inc. Editorial Board Andrea Battaglia • Drury University Ryan Hilperts • AFLV Andrew Hohn • Illinois, Urbana-Chapaign Carol Preston • Wittenberg University Teniell Trolian • University of Iowa Viancca Williams • University of South Florida

the inside starts here 06 Everything – Yet Nothing – Has Changed Sarah Palagyi + Rise Partnerships

Sarah Palagyi takes us back to the early 20th century by reminding us that the history of a fraternity or sorority is the key to maintaining a viable organization today. Reading this article will remind you that while everything has changed, nothing has changed.

Brief History of Interfraternity Institute 10 A Christianne I. Medrano & Steve Veldkamp + Indiana University

Within the fraternity/sorority realm, there exists a long list of institutes, associations, and opportunities for involvement and development. The Interfraternity Institute is just one of these opportunities we don’t think always gets the props it deserves. We think this deserves a read.

Evolution of Fraternity 12 The A Continuing Timeline

Where do you see yourself in the ongoing history of the Fraternity and Sorority movement? Where do you think your members see themselves. Let’s take a look at the reality of our history & guess where we could be going together.

COLUMNS 002 // letter from the executive director 002 // letter from the editor 014 // chronicling your history 016 // from the road 018 // facilitation 411 020 // ask the experts 022 // taking action: celebrating 70 years 024 // a history of ritual 026 // busted! 029 // one more thing

Special Thanks to : Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity Gamma Phi Beta Sorority Alpha Chi Omega Fraternity for their contribution of historical photographs.

Member / Fraternity Communications Association

AFLV // 001

Letter from the Executive Director

Fast forward to current day. Admittedly, I am much more focused on my vision for the future than I am on the past. I spend much more time dreaming about tomorrow than worrying about yesterday. HOWEVER, I have grown to appreciate the value of history. It has often been said “to understand where you are going, you need to understand where you have been.” This is so true. All too often our members are focused on the here and now with little regard or respect for the past (or the future for that matter). We must respect where we come from, what our founders have done to lay this beautiful foundation for us, and all of the lessons that have been learned over time. This keeps the ball moving forward and helps us from making the same bad plays over and over. We are tomorrow’s history. What we do today will be reviewed and analyzed in future generations. Take a moment to reflect on the history of our organizations. What legacy has been left for each of us because of those that came before us? What lessons are there in both their successes and failures? To better understand this will guide us in leaving a better legacy for those that come after us.

Executive Director Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values @koepsell

002 // connections // 2011 • summer

I’m usually not a history buff. And, by ‘usually’ I mean ‘never.’ However, there are a few times I surprise myself by wondering about the past… and why it matters. I recently came across this quote by Lamartine, a French writer, poet and politician from the 19th century: “History teaches everything including the future.” Upon reflection of this statement, I could see two interesting, yet contradictory, viewpoints. One, isn’t it wonderful that the proud story of our creation can guide our actions today and beyond? In other words, the reason our organizations existed 100 years ago is the same reason we exist today: to promote service, support, and scholarship at a level that is higher than what the typical college experience offers. On the other hand, if we rely on history too heavily, are we risking the opportunity to create a new and improved future? When considering the needs of college students 100 years ago and those needs of students today, are they REALLY the same? Has so much changed over the decades that failing to embrace our evolved identities inhibits growth and progress? In the end, however, I’d like to think either approach works. Our history provides us with a foundation on which we build – a continuous reminder of why we’re here. But, we need the evolution of new ideas in order to continue to be relevant. Either way, I see it like this: get up, act, create your own story. Don’t use your background challenges as a crutch nor as a never-ending excuse to view yourself or your organization as revolutionary despite a failure to be just that. Sure, we can’t really know where we’re going if we don’t know where we’ve been. But, if we’re not going anywhere, does it really matter that we used to be somewhere great?

Editor Connections Magazine @leahanson

Letter from the Editor

As I reflect on my youth, a vast majority of my memories are connected to my education. My mind wanders through a large menu of experiences that stand out - things I enjoyed, things I didn’t, things I did, things that others did to me, things I was engaged in, and even – things I wasn’t. One of those things I wasn’t so engaged in was history class. My freshman year of high school I had history 8th hour. I think it is fair to say that at least three days out of five I very successfully navigated my way through class – by falling asleep! Full on sleep, the kind where a puddle of drool is left on the Formica desk top when you wake up. Suffice it to say, my appreciation for history was minimal at best. “Why the heck do I need to know all this stuff about the past anyway?” was my overarching attitude.

From the first ten seconds, Justin’s energy level was off the wall and by then, so was everyone else’s in the conference room. Justin inspires and leaves you motivated to lead in whatever position you may hold in your organization and breaks it down in very simple, relatable ways. Very powerful. –Marc Catud, Theta Chi New Jersey Institute of Technology



BE AN ACTION HERO Are you tired of boring speakers, or high-energy speakers with no substance? If so, Justin perfectly combines great energy with great content to create an empowering experience. Students emerge from his keynotes and workshops excited and ready for challenges that face their college community. Whether he’s speaking to a small group of 15 or to an auditorium of 1,500, students will be impacted by his energy, enthusiasm and encouragement. He is very passionate about helping individuals make good decisions and formulate action plans for their organizations and their lives. Justin helps students believe that when they take their vision and put it into action, they are better leaders, more effective communicators and agents for change in their campus community and beyond. Visit our website to see Justin’s offerings and the variety of ways he inspires students to be ACTion heroes.

For more information about bringing Justin to your campus, please contact CAMPUSPEAK at (303) 745-5545, e-mail us at or visit us on the web and see a promotional video of Justin at

How will YOU contribute? Immerse yourself in culture, fraternal values, & serving others.

Tuscaloosa, Alabama December 17 - 22, 2011

San Salvador, El Salvador December 31 - January 7, 2012 AFLV Service Immersion Experiences are changing lives, communities, and an entire generation’s perspective on serviving others. When will you choose to contribute?

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CONTRIBUTORS steve Veldkamp

Christianne Sarah Palagyi Medrano

Steve Veldkamp Indiana University, Bloomington • Center for the Study of the College Fraternity • Steve Veldkamp is an advocate for fraternities and sororities. He sees campus Greek organizations as the foremost vehicles for the development of leadership, citizenship, intellect and positive relationships among college students.  He currently serves Indiana University, Bloomington as the Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Student Life and Learning.  Steve is a frequent presenter and strategic planning facilitator for campuses, higher education associations, fraternal gatherings and governing boards.  Most recently Steve has worked with Alpha Gamma Delta, Delta Upsilon, Delta Sigma Phi, Lambda Chi Alpha and Tri Sigma. Steve is Director of the Interfraternity Institute now in its 41st year as the premier mid-level professional institute for fraternity and sorority professionals and serves as the Executive Director of the Center for the Study of the College Fraternity.  The Center, founded in 1979, is currently convening men’s and women’s groups who are working in earnest to become assessment-driven organizations.  A highlight of Steve’s career has been his work with college and university presidents responsible for the 2004 Call for Values Congruence publication. Before becoming a Hoosier, Steve spent time working at Western Michigan University and the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire in student development. Steve is a member of the National Association of Student Personal Administrators and the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors which recognized him with the 2010 Robert Shaffer Award.  Steve is a lifetime member of Sigma Phi Epsilon.

Christianne Medrano Indiana University, Bloomington • Chris Medrano is a doctoral student at Indiana University. Her dissertation topic is “The Influence of Latino/a Fraternities and Sororities on Undocumented Student Members.” She has served as the Interfraternity Institute intern in 2010 and 2011. She was an IFI graduate in 2007. Medrano graduated from Miami-Dade Community College with an AA in English. She received her BA in English and Secondary Education along with her Masters in Education degree at the University of Florida. She worked as a Program Coordinator in the Office of Student Activities at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville for three years and now advises the Multicultural Greek Council at Indiana University. She has active memberships in the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors, the National Association for Student Personnel Administrators, the American College Personnel Association, and the Association for the Study of Higher Education. Medrano has also served three terms as Director of Expansion and three terms as National President of Gamma Eta Sorority, Inc. and has served as Secretary for the National Multicultural Greek Council. Lastly, she was the principle author for the  National Multicultural Greek Council Organizations Resource Guide,  published in 2009 by the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors.

Sarah Palagyi Rise Partnerships • @sjpalagyi Sarah J. Palagyi is a graduate of the College of Wooster and a member of Zeta Phi Gamma. She received her Bachelor of Arts in 2010 with majors in Political Science and Philosophy. She currently lives in Cleveland, Ohio, and works in the field of marketing and client development. She has also interned for RISE Partnerships since Fall 2010, where she handles social media, marketing, and administrative functions for the organization.




How Everything – Yet Nothing – Has Changed by Sarah Palagyi • Rise Partnerships • @sjpalagyi

006 // connections // 2011 • summer

History holds a special place at the heart of fraternity and sorority life. Fraternities and sororities tend to emphasize two sets of knowledge: on one hand, a general familiarity with the last decade or so of chapter history, and on the other an academic understanding of their organization’s founding members, traditions, and rituals. Both sets of knowledge are important; the former keeps the group’s “institutional knowledge” alive from year to year, while the latter shapes how the group thinks about its “identity” and “roots” as a whole. But while we think of history from our perspective now, in 2011, brothers and sisters have been asking these questions about their organizations nearly as long as fraternity and sorority life has existed. Why did fraternal organizations develop? Is what our current members think about sisterhood and brotherhood the same as what our founders thought? With well over 200 years of history to grapple with, these questions are just as compelling a century ago as they are today. And thankfully, then as now, “sorority girls” were only too willing to share their insight. Ida Shaw Martin’s early 20th century work titled “A Sorority Handbook” does today what it did when originally written. It reminds members that the history of a group is the key to maintaining a viable organization today.

While her writing focuses on sororities, many of its observations apply to fraternities as well. But to Martin, an emphasis on sororities was important for a historical reason that has faded today - simply, while fraternities had long thrived at America’s academic institutions, women were for the first time gaining a foothold in the

world of higher education. Sororities, Martin explains, were an “outgrowth” of fraternal organizations in that they share similar roots and ideals, but were at the same time a support network for women who found themselves on their own in an area of society traditionally dominated by men.

AFLV // 007

Of course, Martin’s work is not just a sociological discussion of why sororities formed. “A Sorority Handbook” was in part a chronicle of fraternities and sororities in the early 20th century. She outlined the groups, their dates of inception, membership, and traditions. While necessarily incomplete (even then, a complete record would be an impossible undertaking), Martin’s chronicle offers such painstaking and rich detail that it describes nearly every chapter on every known campus over the span of some hundred pages. But even then, Martin applied a critical eye and discussed not only the purpose of fraternities and sororities, but also the ways in which those chapters were, even then, beginning to trend away from their founding ideals. Apart from a chronology, Martin presents a history lesson that may bring Greeks today closer to our roots. When we think of the purpose of fraternities and sororities, we often say that they mold women and men and teach them leadership, values, organizational skills, and so forth. We understand these groups

008 // connections // 2011 • summer

around the concept of a united brotherhood. That unity became increasingly important as our country expanded, academic institutions spread, and with it the personal relationships and attention that students once enjoyed on their campuses and in their communities began to ebb. This evolution not only created a desire to have Greek letter groups to maintain connecThe academic benefits of fraternity tions, but it also created a greater need for them. Just as technology & sorority life have today has expanded the scope not disappeared of our world beyond our physical provide structure and boundaries, the expansion of colwith time; rather lessons that guide memlege campuses in the late 1700s bers into their adultour perception of created similar challenges and hood. But an outsider them has changed. opportunities. Fraternities and might not be able to see sororities were important then past present-day stereotypes. Even chapter for the same reasons that they are now; they members today sometimes struggle to identify offered a familiar structure in which individuthe innate value of fraternity/sorority life; when als could grow while the world around them asked why they decided to “go Greek,” many became bigger and more impersonal. respond with the knee-jerk response that sounds hollow and unconvincing. What we’ve Ultimately, sororities and fraternities were creforgotten today, Martin indicates, was already ated with the “hope that it might serve to unite forgotten at the turn of the 20th century. That in a common interest the most prominent is, fraternities and sororities have innate value members of the student body” (Martin, op. 53). in helping individuals grow into being leaders. Today, these groups offer opportunities to all Those values might not be the honest reason students from all backgrounds. For women, that members join, but at some point, they this served the special purpose of establishing should become the reason that members stay. the right to an equal education for the first Just as this article looks back a century, Martin few generations of sorority women. Accordtoo probed beyond another hundred years to ingly, sororities and fraternities alike originally the founding of today’s modern day frateroffered students the opportunity to tackle nities and sororities. For added scope she academic questions and pursuits beyond what reminds us that the foundation of Greek letter they could learn in a classroom. The academic societies is as old as this nation. Since 1776, benefits of fraternity/sorority life have not Greek letter organizations and secret societies disappeared with time; rather our perception formed, much like the United States formed, of them has changed. Even today’s ‘academic’

positions to list on a resume. Behind these positions there is hard work and an opportunity to build meaningful, real-world skills.

ships, akin to a protective league or network of trusted advisors. This group of advisors provides individuals with both charity and frank criticism. Such a unique mix of feedback is not only unprecedented, but invaluable. The focus on quality over quantity when it comes to friendships was not a call to exclusivity - even in 1904, friendships with others, whether in other organizations or non-Greeks - was crucial. But then, as now, the relationships formed with your sisters were among the most meaningful and lasting friendships of your life.

In many ways, the skills offered by early fraternities and sororities were innovative. fraternal groups still provide students with a The skills acquired to maintain a home did framework to better discover their passions. not correspond to the “traditional” sense Beyond the academic of being a homemaker. edge and despite early Rather, sororities instilled Most importantly, controversy the national the virtues of maintaining both during the organizations were able a budget, securing lodging to provide students with early years and and managing basic chores. exposure to students and Then, as now, both men today, students chapters from across the and women had to learn to Ultimately, membership in a sorority or a were provided nation. take care of themselves and fraternity is both an individualizing and harwith a unique sororities recognized early monizing experience. Historically speaking Aside from providing stuon that this was an importhese organizations were intended to augopportunity to dents with a platform to tant part of their mission, ment one’s undergraduate experience and further academic interests, grow and develop even in academia. bring prestige to the university. A national chapters were created as a person and as platform was intended to provide indiwith the hope of fosterBut having extolled the viduals with the opportunity to meet and a leader. ing leadership potential benefits of fraternal life, share with others from differand characteristics that Martin’s ent universities. Chapters were Historically members had little opportunity to otheradvice is perhaps most meant to sharpen academic wise hone. Initially, sororities served as one poignant - and rings most speaking these discourse and provide a nurturof the only outlets for women to achieve true today - when she talks organizations ing family away from home for equality in academic advancement and, about the importance of students. Most importantly, especially, business acumen. Today, the our sisters or brothers. To- were intended to both during the early years and gap between men and women has been day, students’ interpersonal augment one’s today, students were provided greatly reduced, but the need for a platform networks have expanded undergraduate with a unique opportunity to to develop these skills has not. Fraternal life as never before through experience and grow and develop as a person still offers opportunities available nowhere the evolution of social as a leader. That rich opelse, not only to develop personal virtues bring prestige to and media. Students today portunity is something for which like self-control, patience, but also to build have hundreds - perhaps the university. all members can thank the practical skills like business management. thousands - of contacts early pioneers of fraternities and labeled “friends” or “followsororities. Fraternities and sororities then provided ers,” most of which are no more than casual - and in many ways, required - that men acquaintances. To be fair, social media has and women equally learn how to structure allowed users to network and reconnect and manage a group. This kind of experilike never before, but they dilute the sort of ence was unprecedented in an age before relationships that Martin idealized. To her, internships were commonplace. Today fraternities and sororities were particularly we are privileged to live in a world where valuable because they foster deep relationmany colleges offer “clinics” and “tutorials” designed to hone the same skill sets that fraternities and sororities offered since their inception. It is a reminder that for Greeks today, chapter officers are not just “filler”

AFLV // 009

IFI develops informed, committed & connected leadership, grounded in purpose & principle, for the Greek life movement

IFI alumni bring the vision of, “fraternity/sorority life will be the foremost vehicle for the development of leadership, citizenship, intellect, and positive relationships among college students,” to reality.

010 // connections // 2011 • summer

A BRIEF HISTORY OF INTERFRATERNITY INSTITUTE By Christianne I. Medrano • Indiana University / Steve Veldkamp • Indiana University

The Interfraternity Institute (IFI) was established as a result of insight shared by Dick Fletcher, former Executive Secretary of Sigma Nu Fraternity, and former Indiana University President Herman B. Wells, who was then serving as National President of Sigma Nu Fraternity. Fletcher and Wells felt the relationship between fraternities (and sororities) and institutions of higher education had begun to drift apart. “There was a malaise setting over the Greek system. Many considered it irrelevant. It wasn’t dealing with the political issues of the day. It wasn’t dealing with the student issues of the day. Higher education, frankly, wasn’t paying attention to fraternities much anymore,” recalled Dick McKaig, Indiana University dean of students emeritus. Fletcher and Wells sought to create a professional development program for campus and fraternity/sorority headquarters professionals to initiate a dialogue among fraternity stakeholders. President Wells asked former Dean of Students and Higher Education/Student Affairs faculty member, Dr. Bob Shaffer to join the IFI curriculum development team. Shaffer brought in Tom Schreck, current Dean of Students at Indiana University, and together they developed a curriculum that embodied Fletcher and Wells’ vision. Additionally, Herb Smith, Indiana University’s assistant Dean of Students, joined the planning team as the logistical front man. Once developed, the IFI curriculum became intellectual property of Indiana University and IU faculty delivered it. Fletcher, through his involvement with the Fraternity Executives Association (FEA) Board, engaged in conversations that facilitated FEA’s sponsorship of the program. To date, FEA continues to be the financial backbone of the program. In the 1970’s, the first institute was relatively small with an attendance of about 30 people and was housed in the Delta Upsilon fraternity house. The curriculum for that first institute was very different than what it is today; it had a

business approach. With the establishment of the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA) in 1976, the curriculum began to change to avoid redundancy in topics addressed during AFA’s Annual Meetings. “The curriculum took a pretty dramatic shift to topics that [affected] college campuses. They started talking about hazing, little sisters, rush, and recruitment, and very Greek oriented issues, with a little splatter of other topics,” McKaig said. In the mid-1980’s, IFI Fellows were introduced to serve as mentors to the growing number of new professionals who were becoming fraternity and sorority advisors. In the beginning, IFI participants were older, seasoned professionals serving as Deans of Men and Deans of Women. During the mid-1980’s individuals in entrylevel student affairs positions with a focus on fraternity/sorority life emerged. . These individuals needed the mentorship and guidance of seasoned professionals in fraternity and sorority life, so the structure and the curriculum were altered to meet the needs of this new audience. Simultaneously, IFI also was adjusted to meet professional standards and expectations in the field of higher education. In the 1990’s the IFI Coordinators changed every two or three years. The emphasis during this time was to cater the curriculum to professionals who had served in the field at least two or three years. The curriculum relied heavily on the use of case studies and also emphasized continuing education in other focal areas of higher education. This was an asset to the IFI curriculum because its faculty encompassed many notable members of the higher education cadre at Indiana University’s Higher Education and Student Affairs program. In the early 2000’s, Jeremiah Shinn came to IU and was instrumental in revising the curriculum. The institute now concentrates on developing a professional philosophy grounded in the value of fraternity and sorority.

Since the mid-2000’s, as a result of participant feedback and hot topics in fraternity and sorority life, the Institute remains congruent with current student affairs practices such as creating learning outcomes and assessment strategies to continuously improve the curriculum. The IFI mission statement was created as a foundation for the Institute’s learning outcomes. It reads, “The Interfraternity Institute develops informed, committed and connected leadership, grounded on purpose and principle, for the fraternity/sorority life movement.” Today, the IFI faculty in residence consists of nationally renowned experts in the field. The presence of seasoned Fellows in small group activities enhances the meaning-making process of large group discussions. One thing that has remained consistent since the establishment of IFI has been the long-time partnership between FEA and Indiana University. The partnership with Indiana University establishes the academic credibility of the IFI curriculum as a true educational program with the ability to grant graduate academic credit to participants. IFI continues to be housed at Indiana University and is still a full partnership between FEA and Indiana University staff. Traditions that were established in the 1980’s such as small group discussions, color-themed “dot” groups, participating in kitchen duty, and the signing of the IFI aprons create memorable stories for participants to share at IFI reunions and annual association meetings. The professional development and strong camaraderie that develops among IFI alumni establishes relationships, partnerships and lives up to Fletcher and Well’s vision. IFI alumni bring the IFI vision of, “fraternity/sorority life will be the foremost vehicle for the development of leadership, citizenship, intellect, and positive relationships among college students,” to reality.

AFLV // 011


A Brief History of the North-American Fraternity & Sorority Movement 1776 November 26, 1825 Kappa Alpha Society, the first of the “Union Triad”, was founded.

December 1779 The first expansion of Phi Beta Kappa

1882 Gamma Phi Beta coined the term “sorority” to describe a women’s fraternity. Sorority is derived from the Latin word for sister (soror).

[Although the faculty opposed the new society, students embraced the new fraternity and founded two more Greek organizations at Union College in Schenectady, New York: Sigma Phi on March 4, 1827, and Delta Phi on November 17, 1827. Together these three fraternities formed the “Union Triad” and were the basis for the expansion of the American college fraternity.]

December 5, 1776 Phi Beta Kappa, the first Greek letter organization, was founded at the College of William and Mary

1861–1865 The American Civil War [Interrupted most fraternity operations. After the war, northern fraternities were reluctant to expand to the South, so many southern Greek societies were founded following the Civil War.]

May 15, 1851 Alpha Delta Pi, the first secret society for women, was founded as the Adelphean Society

Here’s another way to look at this timeline: How your newest members typically see the evolution of fraternity: IT ALL STARTED






How your founders likely saw the evolution of their creation: AN IDEA & A PROMISE

How will YOU choose to see Fraternity?

012 // connections // 2011 • summer

➾ YOU Four years is a drop in the bucket of thousands of men & women that came before you and the millions that could come after you.

De Alp trad frat Uni



ibe a y.




January 15, 1908 Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first traditionally African American sorority, is founded at Howard University in Washington, DC.

December 4, 1906 Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, the first traditionally African American fraternity, is founded at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.

1931 Phi Iota Alpha, "La Fraternidad de Fi Iato Alfa" was founded to promote unity, leadership, friendship and scholarship, in amongst Latinos in the United States. First Latin American/Latino fraternal organization established when 12 similar organizations merged.

Call for Values Congruence is developed. [This initiative was a partnership between university presidents & national organizations to challenge fraternities and sororities to return to their foundational values.]

1987 FIPG established, ushering a new era in risk management and social responsibility. 1981 Lambda Phi Epsilon fraternity was founded at UCLA to strengthen the Asian American voice on campus while serving the community and promoting academic success.

REFERENCES Kimbrough, W. (2003). Black Greek 101: The Culture, Customs, and Challenges of Black Fraternities and Sororities. Cranbury, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press. Anson, J. L. and Marchesani, Jr., R. F. (Eds.). (1991). Baird’s Manual of American College Fraternities (20th edition). Indianapolis, IN: Baird’s Manual Foundation, Inc. Call for Values Congruence retrieved from National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations (NALFO) retrieved from National Multicultural Greek Council (NMGC) retrieved from National Asian Pacific Islander American Panhellenic Association (NAPA) retrieved from

AFLV // 013

If you want to research your chapter’s history: If your institution publishes a yearbook, spend some time looking through them starting a year or two prior to the chartering of your chapter. Reach out to your national organization’s archivist or historian; this person may have details or documents that describe the chapter’s history. Spend some time at your school’s library looking through the campus newspaper’s archives. Look through your national organization’s history books or archived copies of the national magazine for details about your chapter. If your chapter has a house, ask your house corporation the background of the pictures and/or books stored throughout the house. If your chapter has had multiple locations for a house, research the city archives for history about each building. If possible, reach out to the national officers of the organization at the time your chapter was founded – they may also have stories about the charter ceremony. Read your old chapter meeting minutes. If possible, talk to chapter founders. If that’s not possible, reach out to members of the chapter as far back as you can go and ask about pictures you may have questions about. If you want to chronicle your chapter’s history: As initiation takes place, make sure the names of all members are recorded in a single roll book. This roll book should include the correct spelling of all members and the dates of initiation for each individual. As you add to this book, verify that everything is legible and up to date (and if it’s not, update it). At the end of each semester, create a vivid record of the events that took place throughout that time period and include pictures and names of the individuals in the pictures (don’t just rely on minutes to do this – lots of important details may be lost). Submit an annual report of your chapter’s activities to your national organization’s archivist. If you are going to create a chapter scrapbook, include the following details throughout it: the name of any events you are recording, where they took place, the names of the individuals in the pictures, and a description of what is happening. While pictures are fun to look at, sometimes it’s hard to tell a story just by looking at pictures (and let’s face it, generations 20 years from now may not understand what’s happening in the pictures without this explanation). When you send information to your national magazine for publication, include names! A lot of times, these pictures are kept by the national organization’s archivist and can be shared with the chapter in future years. Names are important because this can help future generations reach brothers/sisters in case they want to do research about your chapter too.

014 // connections // 2011 • summer

Tips for Researching & Chronicling Your Chapter History

The world is littered with the way we used to do things. Members of AFLV are


doing so much more.

Is it time to renew your membership? Or maybe it’s time to join for the first time, and find out how far your organization can go when it has leading educational resources available every day. Membership subscriptions are annual; begin July 1st and expire June 30th each year. // Both councils and chapters can (and should) join. The cost depends on the size of your council or chapter. // Members receive Connections, attend events at a discounted rate, and have access to AFLV programs and resources throughout the year including LeaderLink webinar series, #GreekChat, Council Officer Manuals, and more. Much, much more.

Find out more at


016 // connections // 2011 • spring

National Archives Conference for Fraternities & Sororities In June of 2010 the first National Archives Conference for Fraternities and Sororities was held at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The conference provided a forum for archivists from fraternity and sorority headquarters to discuss a variety of topics from collection management and preservation to discussions on digitizing historical references and archives. It is important for fraternal organizations to document their history. A large portion of that responsibility of serving as a fraternal archivist is delegated to volunteers of many different national organizations. Some fraternal organizations may be privileged to have a staff member(s) in charge of the archives and may even have a location to display these items for their members to visit. However the national organizations decide to staff and build their archives, it is important that the individuals who are working with these historical items are able to preserve them properly for the future. The National Archives Conference provided a forum for discussion on preservation and also allowed for those present to share what types of items they are saving and how they store/show them. Ellen Swain, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign archivist is looking into the option of hosting another National Archives Conference for Fraternities and Sororities next summer (2012).

The Heritage Museum Kappa Kappa Gamma Located in Columbus, Ohio the national headquarters for the Kappa Kappa Gamma Fraternity sits an old Victorian style house in a quiet and historic neighborhood. Inside this beautiful red brick home sits an impressive collection of historical artifacts that have importance to both the time period of the house and the founding history of Kappa Kappa Gamma. Since the house was originally built it has had multiple residents and served many roles. Built between 1852 and1854 the house was initially home to a merchant named Philip T. Snowden. From 1862-1864 it was the home of the former Ohio Governor David Tod. After the Civil War and up till 1922 the house was the home to a local Columbus philanthropist David Gray. After 1922 the house had multiple functions, including serving as the Columbus Women’s Club Headquarters. Kappa Kappa Gamma eventually acquired the house in 1951 and it has served as the national headquarters since that time. The house has been restored to the 19th century period and helps to depict what life was like during this time period of America. Since 1980 The Heritage Museum has served as a museum which regularly hosts tours for those interested in learning about the history of the house and the historical role that women have played over time, including the founding of Kappa Kappa Gamma. During the history of the house, the structure has suffered two fires, with the most recent one in 1965. Since that time the Kappa Kappa Gamma has renovated the house and has established an impressive connection to the history of their facility and to the founding history of the fraternity. The endless attention to detail is impressive and helps to paint a realistic portrait of the history of life in the Victorian era. Kappa Kappa Gamma also host a museum at the Stewart House, which is the former home to one of their founders and is located in Monmouth, Illinois where the Kappa Kappa Gamma Fraternity was founded. If you are ever in Columbus, Ohio then you should look into visiting the headquarters of Kappa Kappa Gamma. To find our more information you can visit their website at From the Road is a chance to highlight best practices from Fraternity and Sorority communities across the nation. What has your campus done lately that deserves recognition? If you would like to be featured in an upcoming issue, go online to services/connections and submit an overview of a great activity that your council or community has done lately.

history facilItation 411

LEARNING OBJECTIVE Students will increase learning and understanding competencies of History concepts to enhance and maintain real-life engagement past, present and future. College students can be a mixed bag in the Greek history department. To some, history is a snooze-fest, they want to focus on the present; to others, meeting with alumni is terrifying and should be avoided entirely; but luckily, many members understand connecting the past and the present is the best way to ensure a successful, sustained future. But how does History really relate to and improve their collegiate experience?

Greek students and alumni have been making connections, aka networking, successfully for a long time. But, linking past and present doesn’t end there. People with shared vision founded each of our Greek letter organizations for a reason; we call them our founders. And since that time, your organization has seen tens, hundreds and maybe even thousands of members that have caught and lived the vision. What you do today is as important as what the founders did in the beginning—keep history vivid and alive. The goal of each of these activities is education, awareness and understanding. Students will learn through discussion, activities and take-aways about varied experiences and people. Students should become more aware of their actions and the effect on others as well as others effect on them. And students should gain a larger understanding of the tools necessary to build a more inclusive community during their collegiate years and beyond.

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FACILITATOR CONSIDERATIONS HOT TIP! Facilitators should keep a positive attitude when leading historybased sessions. Think History is a snooze-fest? Hand the reigns over to someone who embraces and understands the importance of learning about the past. When the facilitator is excited, their attitude and passion spreads to the group. Know your stuff. Did you know that one of your founders was creative, organized, involved in everything and always made time for what mattered— which is everything? Did you meet your newest member that is just like this founder? By knowing the details to make history seem real, you help current members find a connection to the organization that they will remember forever. Historians Unite! Often chapter historians try to work independently and don’t know how to get started and what needs to be accomplished. As the facilitator, you can set up a round-table, give historians ideas from others and help keep them motivated with a task that may seem daunting.

HOW TO GET STARTED History-based sessions can be a fun, educational program that is very active and exciting.

Activity Variations Cards can be based on one specific topic to incorporate a better understanding.

SET-UP Select locations that are conversation-friendly and allow for movement in a speed-dating-type circle.

Alumni, member groups can also work on a speed-based activity as a team in addition to conversation.

Set up chairs facing each other in a circle. The inner circle will face the outer circle and vice versa. Ensure there is enough room to comfortably carry on a conversation, but keep chairs close enough for quick movement to the next seat. GROUP SIZE Any size group that is 1:1 ratio of chapter members and alumni. SUPPLIES Facilitator will need topic cards with pre-determined question topics ranging from serious to silly, such as: Favorite chapter memory Founder you most relate to Why are you most proud to be a member/alumni of the chapter What is your biggest personal success What do you want to do when you grow up? Favorite reality-TV show Chairs for each person Noisemaker that alerts people to change chairs.

Divide age groups of members and alumni. Place new members with new alumni and senior members with senior alumni. PLAN FOR SUCCESS People get more out of experiences that they enjoy. When leading or participating in History activities, make sure it helps students improve their connection to the past, learning and understanding in a safe, beneficial way. Allow students to have the opportunity to do what they want with the information, it may take days or months or years for them to grasp the concept and see the benefits. ASSESSMENT After you’ve hosted or lead any event, assessment is essential for improvement. Consider distributing surveys to participants or sponsor a feedback meeting to gather successes, opportunities and goals for the next program. Make History Come Alive: WHAT STUDENTS CAN DO Wear It Proud: Have nine founders? Wear your letters on the 9th of each month. Was your group founded on the 28th? On that day of each month, wear your chapter pin. These small gestures keep history alive in the minds of your members.

ACTIVITY TIMING Topics should last for 60-90 seconds each, or timing as determined by the facilitator. // Plan 30-60 minutes for this fun activity.

Recognize Outstanding Members: Develop an award based on each individual founder of your organization and recognize current members in the chapter that embody the characteristics of these founders.

WHAT TO DO: ACTIVITY REVIEW Alumni, chapter member connections-speed-session: Gather a group together and create a speed-dating-like game to help with real-world application of learning about the past and focusing on the future.

First Friday Fun: Set a day each month, like Friday, and host a regular, easy alumni event such as a dinner, attending a campus-based sporting event or community program. This empowers members to mingle with alumni and provides conversation opportunities that seem more natural.

Facilitator should select in advance if the inside or outside circle will be the ones to rotate around the circle.

Show Off A Little: Hang chapter composites, both current and past, throughout the chapter house or chapter area to allow members to see how the chapter has changed through the years. If your chapter area has limited space, select key historical composites and rotate these on a regular basis.

Members will sit in one circle (outer) and alumni should sit in other circle (inner).

history Facilitator will read topic card and alumni/member pairing will have an allotted amount of time to introduce themselves and discuss the topic card with each other. This activity should continue for a time allotted by the facilitator, which will allow for a comfortable opportunity for members and alumni to fully mingle with the entire group.

AFLV // 019

Question One:

I am a chapter president in a chapter that hazes. Although the members “get” the fact that hazing is not allowed anymore, they insist that our organization was founded with this in mind. I am out of ideas for responding.

Tommy Coy

Really? Whether your organization was founded in 1839 or 1995, no one’s founders came together and said, “You know what our campus is missing? An organization that is based on removing the basics of human dignity and embarrasses our new members. But, just when they hit the wall and want to quit, we have a magic moment and call them equals!” All of our rituals talk about bettering humankind and our members. Nowhere do any of them say that sorting colored sprinkles in a basement with pen lights (or worse) will make us better men or women. Look at your organization - does your new member process elevate your members to the next level? As nice as it would be to walk into your chapter meeting and simply say, “We’re done hazing.” A chapter that hazes is unlikely to respond with a resounding cheer. Here is my advice: start small. Pick something everyone knows is ridiculous and encourage the chapter to stop doing it. However, here is the important element. Talk honestly to either your chapter advisor, Fraternity/Sorority Life advisor, or a headquarters staff member about what you are attempting to achieve and why and how they can help. Work with them on your plan and create a partnership. This engagement is vital for two reasons: One, your chapter’s leadership is much more temporary than these individuals. Two, I assure you these advisors are waiting and wanting to help you. It’s tough to change a culture. None of our fraternal organizations support hazing and I’m sure there is a silent majority of your members who do not fully support it either. I have two main suggestions.

Andy Morgan

1 > Reach out to your alumni, advisors, and national volunteers. Have them educate you and the chapter on the history of the chapter. I wonder how old this “tradition” actually is. Additionally, reach out to your organization’s historians. Maybe there is someone at the national level who can discuss the organization’s early years and will clarify that hazing didn’t have a place in the organization’s founding. 2 > Your members need to find an alternative to hazing. There are more productive activities that build unity among new member classes and respect towards the chapter. Work with key officers and your advisors and ask “what is the overall goal of our new member education program?” Once that is answered, ask how specific activities relate to this overall goal, if they don’t, then don’t do them, or change them so they do meet the goals and build good actives/initiated members and not just good new members. I know it’s easier said than done, but if you have the backing of your officers and advisors, it will be a lot easier. It can be a great challenge to change a hazing culture, especially when members have convinced themselves that the act of hazing yields positive outcomes and promotes the values of the organization. The phrase “But we’ve always done it this way...” is the response of a member who feels threatened. The excuse of “tradition” often serves as a cop-out for people when they don’t truly understand the values of their organization.

Kristen Mitchell

As President, you’re under pressure to not only promote the values of your organization, but to remain a “team player” as well. You want the members of your organization on your side. Taking a stance against hazing can be hard if you feel like you’re going about it alone. First and foremost, remember this: “If you’re not part of the solution, then you’re part of the problem.” There is no such thing as an innocent bystander when it comes to hazing. You’re either actively helping to change your chapter’s mentality or you’re not. To do this, form an alliance and find others who want to be active in saying “no” to hazing, then come up with ways to do so. Start small. Form an anti-hazing committee or a values committee within your chapter. Include alumni/alumnae who can educate members on the values of your organization and demonstrate how hazing does not fit into the conversation. Second, it’s important to frame your anti-hazing argument on more than one level. While some members might get the message that hazing is wrong simply by becoming informed and educated about values, others need to be faced directly with the risks of getting caught. In this case show instead of tell. Last, show the positive fruits that an anti-hazing culture can bear.

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Ask the Experts Want to be a Connections Magazine Expert? If you are a professional who has great advice, email and let us know that you are interested in being one of our future Experts.

This Month’s Experts:

Andrea Weber Assistant Director of Student Engagement for Fraternity and Sorority Life Missouri State University Kristen Mitchell Program Manager, Marketing and Communications Alpha Phi

Alex Snowden Coordinator of Student Engagement & Greek Affairs University of Texas – San Marcos Andy Morgan Coordinator of Fraternity & Sorority Life Southern Illinois University Carbondale Tommy Coy Assistant Director of Student Life Grand Valley State University

Question Two:

I am an executive member of our campus’s Multicultural Greek Council. What’s the deal with so many fraternities calling our chapters “non-traditional?” We’re sick of it – and very traditional, by the way. We’re older and more historic than many groups!

Alex Snowden

Andy Morgan

When groups or people don’t understand differences they try to label them. The best approach to combating the non-traditional label is to take a look at both the differences and the similarities of the organizations on your campus. Lots of people who use the word ‘non-traditional’ to describe culturally based organizations are historically Caucasian… in other words, they were founded when a majority of college students were male and Caucasian so they didn’t have culture specifically in mind. The truth of the matter is that all fraternities and sororities have members of different races, religions, creeds, and cultures. The second major difference is how organizations were created. In a time that the United States was changing culturally, many historically Caucasian fraternities and sororities would not initiate members of different religions, creeds, and races. Seeing the benefit of what a fraternity/sorority can bring these excluded members formed organizations with like-minded values and missions. As a result, most all of these newly formed multicultural-based organizations have specific cultural values related to the reason they were created and their mission of bringing diversity to the fraternal world. Bottom line: there is no “traditional” or “non-traditional” fraternity/sorority. We were all founded for a purpose and reason that is slightly different from all others.

Each organization has their own traditions; however our values are very similar. These other groups simply may not be educated about yours - and your members may not be educated about them, too. Look at this as an opportunity to reach out to the fraternities you are not familiar with and do an event (such as a service or philanthropic) with them so you can learn more. Even better, your chapter could organize an event where all the MGC, IFC, NPHC, and Panhellenic chapters have the opportunity to anonymously ask questions about the other fraternities and sororities on the campus. Maybe a member of your Council or the campus based professional can help moderate the discussion. You may want to open this event to non-fraternity and non-sorority members and the campus administration so they may also be educated on your fraternity and sorority community. We are all guilty of having stereotypes of groups who we deem as “different” than us, but once we learn more about them through communication, we realize we have more similarities than differences.

One Last Question:

What’s the story behind the NPC & the NIC – and what are other organizations that play umbrella/governing roles like this?

That is a great question and one that could in fact take up multiple editions of Connections. What you will get here, is indeed a quick and dirty version.

Tommy Coy

NAPA (National APIA Panhellenic Association) is the umbrella organization that works to unite Asian interest Fraternities and Sororities onto common causes and facilitate communication between the various organizations. NAPA was founded in 2006 and has 10 organizations, 7 Sororities and 3 Fraternities. Find out more at:

NALFO (National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations) is the umbrella council for Latino interest Greek Letter Organizations. NALFO was established in 1998 and has 19 organizations, 7 Fraternities and 12 Sororities. Find out more at: NMGC (The National Multicultural Greek Council) is the umbrella council for a coalition of Multicultural Greek-letter organizations (MGLOs). NMGC was established in 1998 and has 10 organizations, 8 Sororities and 2 Fraternities. To find out more:  NPHC (The National Pan-Hellenic Council) is a coordinating body for the nine historically African American fraternities and sororities. NPHC was established in 1930 at Howard University. To find out more: One final suggestion: invite someone from another council (make sure they are knowledgeable) to coffee and let them know you want to find out more about their organization and their governing council. The North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) is a trade organization that serves as a forum and advocacy group where affiliated organizations can come together to create standards and work together on the various issues that affect its member organizations. No organization is required to be a member and not all are. The NIC has no direct oversight of local Interfraternity Councils and serves only the inter/national affiliated organizations directly. Decisions made at this level do Alex affect local councils such as expansion standards, but it is an indirect relationship Snowden because each local IFC creates and implements their own constitutions and bylaws using the NIC as a guide. This is not to be confused with the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) which governs 26 sororities and women’s fraternities. The main difference between the NIC and NPC is how they govern. Where the NPC also advocates and creates standards for its affiliated members, they take it a step further and share in the governance of the local Panhellenic Councils. The NPC has regional directors, recruitment specialists, and other direct volunteers to help oversee consistency and enactment of policy. This means that local Panhellenic Councils answer both to the university and the NPC. The other umbrella organizations you may hear about are NALFO, NAPA, NMGC, and NPHC. These umbrella organizations operate similarly to the NPC and NIC, but are dominated by organizations that have specific culturally based values and traditions. One interesting thing you will see is that some organizations are actually affiliated with multiple umbrella organizations and therefore follow the standards of both. Both the NIC and NPC are umbrella organizations but they serve different purposes to their member organizations. In its simplest form, NPC serves as an advocacy group for its members and the NIC serves as a trade organization. Just as each of our organizations came together to support the values, needs, and wants of its members, these umbrella groups do the same. In addition, NPHC is the National Pan-Hellenic Council and they comprise nine historically black fraternities Andrea and sororities. Their mission is to promote discussion and engage in meaningful Weber educational experiences. Another umbrella group is NALFO (National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations) and its purpose is to promote positive relationships and communication amongst its members. There are some others, but ultimately, all of these organizations provide education, direction, and a voice for their member groups while also providing some structure.

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Celebrating 70 Years of History & Tradition In my time as an undergraduate member of the Alpha Omega Chapter of Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity, I heard brothers mention many times their desire to involve parents in the things we do within the fraternity. Members wanted their parents to know we are leaders and we devote our time to serve a higher purpose; one that builds men of character. They wanted their parents to know we are more than a group of college men who pay to hang out with one another. We’re a brotherhood - sharing ties that make us bound in union to learn, lead, and serve within our college and the community. Upon being elected president of my chapter in fall 2010, the idea to involve parents in the rich history of Phi Kappa Tau met the planning stage. A senior member and past president of our chapter devoted his time to outline the makings of a 69th Anniversary celebration, and from the night he pitched his ideas for the event I knew we had something special on our hands. Over the next several months, brothers of our chapter typed personal letters of invitation to parents and alumni. We met with staff from our college to plan the event. We met and followed up with local businesses to acquire donations for our silent auction. We decorated the dining hall. We made posters with pictures of undergraduate brothers for parents to see. We made awards, a full evening program, and brought together speakers. On April 2, 2011, we celebrated the event with a Founder’s Day Banquet. In attendance were brothers, parents, friends, alumni, Baldwin-Wallace faculty, a Representative for the State of Ohio, and Phi Kappa Tau’s National President. The evening opened with a greeting from the chapter’s Vice President of Alumni Relations, followed by an invocation and prayer from the chapter’s Chaplain. Attendees enjoyed a dinner that allowed students, parents, faculty, and alumni to have the opportunity to interact. Following the meal, our chapter Scholarship Chairman took the opportunity to recognize an Economics professor as Phi Kappa Tau’s Outstanding Faculty of the Year for his continued support and dedication to the education of students at Baldwin-Wallace College. 1906


The evening program also included my remarks as chapter President, where I had an opportunity to discuss chapter accomplishments and our goals for the future. Following my remarks, active alumni and current State Representative for Ohio’s 18th district, Brother Michael Dovilla, discussed his role as an alumni member of the Fraternity, and recognized four members for their efforts over the last year awarding the Outstanding New Member, Outstanding Executive Officer, Outstanding Senior, and Outstanding Member awards. The evening concluded with National President of Phi Kappa Tau speaking about the influence of Phi Kappa Tau in the lives of men across the nation and the importance of brotherhood in developing men of character. May 16, 2012, will mark the 70th Anniversary for our chapter. This milestone will mark 70 consecutive years within Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity’s 106-year history the men of Baldwin-Wallace College have developed as leaders through opportunities to learn, lead, and serve. By engaging students, parents, alumni, and faculty, we hope to bring together not only the alumni that have built the history of our chapter, but also the students, parents, and friends who have made our history a success. By recognizing our history, leading our communities, and serving those who have done so much for us, we can hopefully mark our legacy as fraternity men; men who have gone beyond the call of duty to pay respect to our great founders, who paved the way for us. As a brotherhood, we understand that the small steps we take today will create room for great success for the men of Phi Kappa Tau tomorrow. Taking Action  Dominic A. Schillace  Phi Kappa Tau  Baldwin-Wallace College


A History of Ritual The rituals of fraternities and sororities have long been sacred, and therefore secret. While the emergence of a more public conversation that calls for behavior and action to align with fraternal values has made Ritual conversations less taboo, what happens behind closed doors (with a few exceptions) is still a highly guarded and cherished secret for fraternities and sororities.

Most would credit the North-American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) with creating the first forum that allowed collegian fraternity and sorority members to participate in such a conversation with the creation of the Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute (UIFI) in 1990. However, as secret as our rituals and ceremonies are, they are often surprisingly similar as they have evolved from the rituals of the ancient Greeks and other ancient societies. Secret fraternal organizations began as long as 7000 years ago in Egypt, Greek, and Italy. In ancient Greek and Rome, the Eleusinian mysteries attracted such celebrities as Homer, Socrates, and Plato.

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By 1776, several chapters of the Social and Benevolent of Freemasonry (Masons) formed in New England in the newly formed United States of America. While the Masons was an organization for adult community leaders, younger men soon followed suit with the desire to create a similarly exclusive club to support freethinking. Because of the extremely rigid environment in colleges and universities during that time, organizations were formed to create an avenue for discussion, thought, and social activities. The restrictive atmosphere of the university setting affected the decision to make these organizations secret.

The teaching of the secrets and symbols of the fraternity is usually part of the ritual. These might include the passwords, motto, recognition signs, grip, symbolism in the coat of arms, significance of titles of officers, interpretation of the fraternity flag, flower, whistle, call, song, etc. Once the oath is taken and full membership is bestowed, initiated are invested with the badge/pin. This is usually done by the big brother/sponsor or president, occasionally by another officer.

Often, a charge of the responsibilities is read to the new initiate(s). This is sometimes done by the president or an alumnus. Some charges are written while others are extemporaneous. Usually it is read to the new members as a group. These charges may include encouraging the initiate to fulfill the ideals and maintain the standards of the fraternity, complete his/her college education to the best of his/her ability, to pursue lifelong learning, strive for unity, or to serve the fraternity in the future. Many fraternal organizations make use of a prayer at some point. A chaplain often stands and offers the prayer. The prayers often are to an omnipotent deity, asking for loyalty from brothers, and/ or blessings on the fraternity and/or neophytes. Readers may be surprised to learn there are so many similarities among the Rituals of today’s fraternities and sororities. Simply studying the ritual of one’s own organization, or studying the history of rituals in secret societies in general can provide a deeper understanding of an organization.

Common Characteristics of Ancient Rituals Purification of the neophyte

Symbolic journey, either observed or participated in by the neophyte. Often includes tests of knowledge, courage, or physical ability. Teaching of secrets; including symbols, objects, and means of identifying other initiates. Investiture of a symbol of initiation (badge, crown, tattoo or scar, jewelry, etc.) Inspiration by a lecture on the expectations of future behavior based on the values presented in the initiation.

Five Basic Areas of Ritual Precept

Character • honor, leadership, morality, truth, loyalty Scholarship • academics, intellectual development, pursuit of knowledge Fellowship • brotherhood/sisterhood, group unity, shared values Service • to those less fortunate, fellow man, a particular profession Religion • respect for a higher authority, life after death, sometimes a particular denomination’s view

Sources of ritual material

Masonry and other adult lodge groups modeled on the Masons such as Knights of Columbus, Knights of Pythias, Order of Odd Fellows, Templars, etc. Religious books and liturgies such as wedding, funerals, and worship services as well as the Bible, Torah, and Koran. Other fraternal organizations, especially men who were assisting women in the development of rituals as sororities and women’s fraternities evolved, but also men of one fraternity assisting men starting new fraternities.

Common Components of Rituals

Rituals usually begin with the preparation of the candidates/neophytes and a procedure for admitting the neophyte into the initiation room. Usually this process consists of dressing the neophyte in a robe, and leading them (often blindfolded) to a door where a knock or password is exchanged. Sometimes, there is also an exchange of grips or signs that gain the neophytes and conductor admittance. In most groups, there is an administration of an initiation oath. Often, it is the chapter president who administers this oath. Neophytes are often standing, but may be kneeling and/or have their right hand raised. Some of the items included in the oath may include a vow to: > keep the secrets of the fraternity, > promote the interests of the fraternity, > obey orders from superiors to strive for excellence, > improve him/herself in the areas of the precepts of the fraternity, > not join any other fraternity, > promote the interests of the host institution.

#FAIL Stupid Things That You Have Done Lately

The goal of Busted! is to call attention to an event, situation, or practice that has actually occurred and utilize it as an experience

that others can learn from. // It is commonly said that fraternities and sororities suffer from unfair stereotypes and are undervalued

for our true purpose as values-based organizations. Unfortunately, some fraternity and sorority members commonly mock these

stereotypes by behaving in ways that only solidify them in the minds of others. Busted! aims to confront these stupid decisions via direct confrontation. // Actions such as these do nothing but reinforce the negative stereotypes of today’s fraternities and sororities. Embarrassed? Then knock it off.

Let’s Start Here...

Sorority sisters charged with assault for hazing Prince George’s County police have charged seven University of Maryland, College Park, sorority sisters with assaulting and hazing a pledge during initiation. The student told police that she was assaulted by current or former members of Zeta Phi Beta sorority on at least three occasions, according to charging documents. The student told police she was trying to join Zeta Phi Beta, which is a historically black sorority, when the assaults occurred. The women are accused of pushing the pledge into a wall, hitting her arms and repeatedly striking her with an oak paddle, according to charging documents. Police say the assaults occurred off campus and resulted in “severe bruising” on the student’s arms and chest. The U-Md. Department of Fraternity and Sorority Life learned on Nov. 12 that Zeta Phi Beta had “failed to follow University guidelines for activities involved in taking on new members” and suspended campus recognition of the sorority that day, according to a university statement. At the same time, Prince George’s County police launched an investigation. Delta Kappa Epsilon loses recognition at the University of Alberta A fraternity accused of hazing rituals that included forcing would-be members to eat their vomit has been suspended for five years. The suspension means Delta Kappa Epsilon won’t be able to associate itself with the University of Alberta in any way. It will not be allowed to rent any university space or equipment, display its insignia or participate in any school government activities. The frat house’s liquor and gaming rights have also been revoked.

“Hazing activity is strictly prohibited at the University of Alberta,” the dean of students said Thursday. “I’ve suspended the DKE fraternity today as a student group for a period of five years. During the period of suspension they will be ineligible to register as a student group at the university,” [the dean of students] said. “The Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity are no longer allowed to officially identify themselves as or carry on activities as if they are associated with the University of Alberta in any manner.” The university announced an investigation in October after the school’s student newspaper reported allegations that recruits were swarmed, yelled at, called names, deprived of sleep and threatened with violence. It was alleged that pledges had to spend time in a wooden box and eat their own vomit. The fraternity’s parent organization also suspended it for three years after a committee of four alumni visited in November. The committee recommended the suspension and said Delta Kappa Epsilon International would appoint an alumni council to oversee all of the local chapter’s affairs. [The dean of students] said the fraternity admitted during the investigation that hazing took place over a number of years and involved current students and alumni. A vice-president with the students union, said the episode had cast a “negative shadow” on all campus fraternities. [The vice president] hopes they can put that behind them now. “Now they’ll have the opportunity to showcase all the great things they do for the community,” [the vice president] said. The fraternity released a statement on its website shortly after the decision was announced in which it apologized for the hazings. The fraternity can apply to have the suspension lifted after three years if it can prove that changes have been made. No individual member has been charged.

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Here they are, dear reader, our standard hazing-is-still-happening segment in Busted! Isn’t it just straight up sad that we don’t even have to go looking for material about what hazing has happened lately as we go to print for each issue? We’re pretty sure we don’t need to point out that making an incoming member eat their own vomit or hitting/paddling them is hazing, so we’ll skip that lecture this time. We know we have to repeat ourselves, so we’ll go back to it in a different issue. Commercial interruption: For those of you reading Busted! and are annoyed by our attitude that we’ll always have hazing to talk about and think you know better and we should give you credit for such, please hand this magazine directly to the person on your campus who does not get it. Thank you. Back to our regularly scheduled programming. Instead of revisiting the evils of hazing here, let’s talk about what the articles don’t overtly say. Let’s talk about the fact that the University of Alberta student body vice president thinks that the time of their suspension is the right time for them to “show all the good things they do for the community.” WTH?!? Or the fact that the hazing within Zeta Phi Beta was perpetuated by former members. I mean, who doesn’t love alumnae who keep it real by ensuring that prospective members are beaten and tortured. How about a couple of specific things missing from the story about DKE? Here’s item number one we think is missing: a statement from the University saying they are highly encouraged to cease and desist all activity during the time of their suspension. We understand that the men of DKE have the right to freely associate in Alberta as an organization. We understand that the University does not have the authority to “close” a chapter. However, it does seem that the dean gives permission through omission for them to continue functioning.

Busted. References

Canadian Press, The. (2011, Jan. 28) Fraternity loses status over hazing. Red Deer Advocated. Retrieved from: html# Johnson, J. (2011, March 2) 7 sorority sisters charged with hazing. The Washington Post. Retrieved from:

We call that JV. Item number two we think is missing: the international organization ordering the chapter to cease and desist all activity during the time of their suspension. Sure, these handy alumni (we’re sure they weren’t involved, right!?!) will “oversee the chapter’s affairs” but that sure just says that the chapter will have affairs during the suspension. Does that seem backwards to anyone else? You’re suh-spen-dud. One would think the fraternity would say something like, “Hmmm, these young men seem to have a total lack of understanding of what we’re about. Maybe we should relieve them of the privilege of membership and make sure we don’t have anyone operating in our name there for a while.” One would think. As far as the women from Zeta Phi Beta who likely will get their day in court, we hope you run up against some great prosecutors. Because if you hazed, we believe you deserve to face the music for your actions. And since our inter/national organizations can’t seem to make as much headway as anyone would like, let the courts handle it. See, dear reader, here is the secret: Until someone – anyone – in the position to do so thoroughly communicates that bastardizing fraternity results in losing the privilege of fraternity we will still have hazing stories to which we can respond. Tune in next time. We’ll be here. Unfortunately.

Interested in making a difference?

National Hazing Prevention Week is observed on campuses, in schools and communities, and within organizations each year during September. This year, NHPW will be September 19-23. Utilizing a national awareness week is a great way to bring attention to the problem of hazing locally; to educate parents, faculty and staff, students, community members, local and campus police and others so they can more easily recognize hazing — and more importantly — have the skills to intervene, when hazing occurs., your national organization’s headquarters, and your local advisors can help you find resources to develop your own skills or to teach others. Check out for help, ideas, and advice. Some campuses plan an entire week of activities and programs and some simply plan one or two meaningful programs. Whatever you do, the important thing is to do SOMETHING to help break the cycle.



The AFLV Officer Manual Series was designed with the contemporary fraternity / sorority student leader in mind. Utilizing the resources and information within these handbooks as a supplement to your other leadership training opportunities will help you understand your role better and assist you in creating values-congruent fraternal organizations. These leading-edge handbooks include checklists, testimonials, sample documents, and best practices to assist officers in their positions. It’s time to stop running from the hard parts of your leadership role and take on the job like a pro.



{ }

one Five more { Books thing we know you’re near the end, but we’d love to tell you

that Provide Insight into the History of Fraternities and Sororities on Campus

before you go and look at the back cover of the mag.


Bound By a Mighty Vow: Sisterhood and Women’s Fraternities, 1870-1920 by Diana B. Turk (2004)


The Divine Nine: The History of African American Fraternities & Sororities by Lawrence Ross (2002)


The Company He Keeps: A History of White College Fraternities by Nicholas L. Syrett (2009)


Baird’s Manual of American College Fraternities (20th edition)


Black Greek 101: The Culture, Customs, & Challenges of Black Fraternities and Sororities

edited by Jack L. Anson and Robert F. Marchesani, Jr. (1991)

by Walter M. Kimbrough (2003)

031 // connections // 2011 • summer

Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values PO Box 1576 Fort Collins, CO 80522-1576


History is Great.

But what are you doing to find out where we’re going next? 1776

December 1779 The first expansion of Phi Beta Kappa

December 5, 1776 Phi Beta Kappa, the first Greek letter organization, was founded at the College of William and Mary

November 26, 1825 Kappa Alpha Society, the first of the “Union Triad”, was founded. [Although the faculty opposed the new society, students embraced the new fraternity and founded two more Greek organizations at Union College in Schenectady, New York: Sigma Phi on March 4, 1827, and Delta Phi on November 17, 1827. Together these three fraternities formed the “Union Triad” and were the basis for the expansion of the American college fraternity.]

1882 Gamma Phi Beta coined the term “sorority” to describe a women’s fraternity. Sorority is derived from the Latin word for sister (soror).

1861–1865 The American Civil War [Interrupted most fraternity operations. After the war, northern fraternities were reluctant to expand to the South, so many southern Greek societies were founded following the Civil War.]

May 15, 1851 Alpha Delta Pi, the first secret society for women, was founded as the Adelphean Society

Every day, you can make a difference.

Find out how AFLV can help you, your organization, and your entire campus community make incedible changes in our future. Find out more at

January 15, 1908 Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first traditionally African American sorority, is founded at Howard University in Washington, DC.

December 4, 1906 Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, the first traditionally African American fraternity, is founded at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.

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Connections Summer 2011  

AFLV Connections is the Association's quarterly magazine highlighting information, stories, best practices, and news that impact fraternity...

Connections Summer 2011  

AFLV Connections is the Association's quarterly magazine highlighting information, stories, best practices, and news that impact fraternity...

Profile for aflv