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The Bridge Builder

Vol. III, Issue 1


A Word From Our President John Jackson ’13, President Another year is on the horizon for the Eta Epsilon Chapter – and I have a feeling it is going to be one of the best we’ve ever had. Although most of us weren’t in school this summer many fraternity officers were busy preparing for the upcoming year. The 172nd General Convention, recruitment, the new floor, and advisory team appointments have been the focus in preparation for the year. Andy Lane ’12 and I traveled to Seattle, Washington for Convention, the theme of which was “Bound Together.” Being at Convention, I truly felt the Beta Spirit. It was great to see both young and old come together for such a joyous celebration. Eta Epsilon was recognized by the General Fraternity with awards, too. The chapter received the North Dakota Award for Excellence in Publications, for this very newsletter, as well as the Website Excellence Award. Remember to view our website at The chapter also received an

honorable mention for the Pledge Education Award. Additionaly, I am very proud to say that the chapter received our first Sisson Award for overall chapter excellence. Returning from Convention the executive board met at Chapter Counselor Ric Eickhoff’s home for a summer strategy session. We all agreed recruitment is a major goal for the entire year, not just the fall semester. Ken Clar ’14, with the assistance of Troy Murphy ’14, has been doing a great job in getting ready for the formal recruitment season. Eta Epsilon is also excited to be one of the very first Beta chapters to receive on-site recruitment support from the General Fraternity. Before and through the week of formal recruitment our chapter’s new leadership consultant, Tristan Sopp, Washington University in St. Louis ’11, will be here working with us and helping us recruit. A point of interest for all new

A Word From Our President 1 Parents’ Club Update 7 Ask A Beta 7 Late-Breaking News 9 “Developing Men of Principle for a principled life!”

recruits and for the brothers is the new residence hall floor. A third floor wing of Hamlin Hall is now home to the Betas. I have been working with Vice President Dan Imfeld ’13, advisors, and recently appointed Housing Manager Rich Mazzola ’13 to get the floor decorated and organized for the year. Mazzola wasn’t the only new appointment this summer. It is bittersweet to announce that two brothers are transferring from JCU to follow their aspirations with programs that the school doesn’t offer. Ben Szweda ’12 will be going to Cleveland State University and Trenton Oczypok ’13 will be attending the

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From working hard to catching up on some needed and deserved R&R, to find out how our membership kept busy over the dog days of summer, look for these blue boxes throughout the newsletter!

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Vogel Goes Out on Top Joel Mullner, Founding Father, Member Edu. & PR Advisor

future students to excel academically, socially, and emotionally.” Andrew served two terms as scholarship chairman and one as risk manager for the chapter. He also understood the importance of Greek Life as a whole and acted as the Vice President for Administration and Finance for the university’s Interfraternity Council. Order of Omega, the national Greek honorary society, inducted him into membership as a sophomore in the spring of 2009.

Fr. Niehoff, JCU’s President, & Vogel, the Beaudry Award recipient. In the fall of 2007, Andrew Vogel began his collegiate career at John Carroll University. Fast forward four years, and he is starting medical school this fall at the Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine. In between that time, Andrew certainly made his mark on John Carroll, its faculty and staff, and his student peers. “He has proved to be a challenging, engaging and sincere student who depicts the utmost concern for, and dedication to, the mission of the institution in which he lives and studies,” remarked John Scarano, director of campus ministry. “His level of commitment, friendliness, and helpfulness to the university and

to those with whom he makes contact, is exemplary.” Just one month into his freshman year, he became a founding father of Beta Theta Pi at John Carroll. He originally joined in order to be a part of a positive organization on campus. Little did he realize the effect his membership would have on his personal growth. “My time as a founding father of Eta Epsilon helped me truly develop as a gentleman, leader, and scholar,” Vogel reflected. “There were many hard times in working towards chartering and other goals for the fraternity. It was a powerful experience to help develop a fraternity that complemented the mission at John Carroll and would allow

Vogel always kept academics front of mind, graduating cum laude with a B.S. in cell and molecular biology. He was a member of the university honors program and was the elected president of Alpha Sigma Nu, the prestigious Jesuit honor society. The Pre-Health faculty even appointed him to serve as the student representative on the Health Professions Advisory Committee. Dr. Erin Johnson, assistant professor of biology, commented that Andrew was “an exceptional student who continually sought opportunities not only to enhance his undergraduate experience but also to become a better person.” The biology department faculty selected Andrew to receive two honors at the senior awards presentation in May. He was named an Outstanding Biology Scholar, recognized for outstanding research activity.

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This summer, Jon McCandless ‘14 could be found interning in GM’s engineering dept. Jon also finalized his enrollment in JCU’s/CWRU’s joint degree program for engineering physics & electrical engineering.


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Vol. III, Issue 1

Eta Epsilon recognized with Volunteer Appreciation Award Joel Mullner, Founding Father, Member Edu. & PR Advisor

The chapter’s recognition was also the subject of an article entitled “University Heights fraternity honored for work with autism” that appeared in the Heights Observer in mid-July. “Members of Beta Theta Pi demonstrate extreme compassion and acceptance of others,” commented Leslie Rotsky, education project manager for Milestones. “Perhaps when I have seen the members shine the most is during events which we have co-hosted where they have worked, played, and volunteered hand-in-hand with individuals who have autism or other disabilities.”

Last year, Beta Theta Pi at JCU was looking to adopt a new philanthropy that would also allow the brothers to “feel” the fruits of their fundraising labors by engaging in a service partnership. It was important for the chapter to give back to a local agency that would provide the opportunity to interact with children. After a thoughtful and thorough search, a relationship with the Milestones Autism Organization was born. Milestones is Northeast Ohio’s premier autism resource that provides the tools for a better life for individuals with autism and their families and the professionals that support them. Its mission is to promote lifelong strategies for success in school, home, community, and work. During its ninth annual Autism/Asperger’s Conference on June 21, the Milestones Autism Organization acknowledged Eta Epsilon with its inaugural Volunteer Appreciation Award to recognize the chapter’s efforts throughout the past year. Undergraduates Andy Lane ’12 and Brian Pestotnik ’12 joined advisors Ric Eickhoff, Joel Mullner ‘07, Joe Chinnici, and Ben Lupica on stage during the conference opening to accept the award and express their appreciation for the honor. More than 900 people in the autism community – parents and professionals alike – were in attendance for this year’s conference at nearby Landerhaven.

The chapter sponsored a game night this past spring with individuals from a local Milestones affiliate, YouthAbility, and also hosted a performance of YouthAbility’s play in the Marinello Little Theatre for students and the community to attend. “I feel awed and overwhelmed by the genuine kindness and friendship the members of the fraternity have shared with YouthAbility participants,” remarked Heidi Solomon, YouthAbility coordinator. “We feel blessed to be able to benefit from their generous spirit.” “We feel so wonderful that our dream of being included has come true,” exclaimed one YouthAbility participant. Aside from hands-on service with children with autism, Beta assists the Milestones staff with setup and behind the scenes work for their large professional networking events and annual Comedy Benefit, which raised more than $50,000 last November. This past year, brothers constructed over 200 mobiles for a kids’ craft table, and also joined the Milestones team in the Walk Now for Autism. Rotsky continued, “Beta Theta Pi members strike me as very well-rounded individuals who are quick to share a smile or a kind word, generous with their time, extremely focused on their studies and adept at prioritizing their busy schedules. As I’ve walked around campus with them, it’s easy to

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This summer, Chris Shaheen ‘12 could be found traveling to Cape Cod and NYC when he wasn’t working for the Lubrizol Corporation in the procurement and finance division.


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This summer, Mark Ehrbar ‘12 could be found either at Gesu Church where he is Assistant Director of Music or across the road in class at JCU. Mark also vacationed on Kelley’s Island at his summer home.

The 172nd General Convention, Seattle, WA: Eta Epsilon’s Report Andy Lane ‘12, Fmr. President Attending Convention this summer presented another exciting opportunity for me to grow, network, and learn about Beta. Seeing how Beta Theta Pi operates at the General Fraternity level reiterated my initial reasons for going Greek and made me proud to be a member of the Eta Epsilon chapter of Beta Theta Pi. My experience during this Convention was quite different from last year when I spent most of my time in legislative sessions and presenting our then called “colony’s” petition to charter. This year I participated in Beta Theta Pi’s Leadership College. Throughout this year’s Leadership College, I was able to pick three different leadership sessions to attend: managing personal finances, professional networking, and living Beta’s ritual. These sessions gave me tools not only to bring back to Eta Epsilon, but also to implement in my daily life. At the same time, I was able to meet and talk with various Beta undergraduates and alumni. Hearing what Beta means to men who are 65+ years old was an eye opening experience. It showed me that the principles that we abide by are time tested truths, that if lived will allow one to impact the world.

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John Jackson ’13, President Everything about Convention was amazing. It began with a somewhat nervous start… I was worried that I booked flights to the wrong airport, because as we were getting ready for landing all I could see were mountain ranges and small towns. I was looking for the space needle and Puget Sound - two things I didn’t see with the bird’s eye view. Luckily Andy Lane ’12 and I did land in the correct airport which was confirmed when we met up with four other confused looking college guys wearing polos and Sperry’s – yes they were fellow Betas. We all managed to find the correct bus line to Bellevue, which was about 20 miles from the airport. With convention being so far out West many chapters only sent one or two people. Although it’s unfortunate that not more undergraduates could partake in Convention, it was nice for the brothers present because everyone was able to meet fellow brothers from all over.

On Friday the 29th

day of July 2011, the 172nd General

Convention bestowed

upon the John Carroll University Chapter, the Eta Epsilon of

Beta Theta Pi, the following awards:

The Francis H. Sisson Award

for excellence in chapter operations

The North Dakota

Award for Excellence in Chapter


Website Excellence Award

for designing and creating the most exciting and informative webpage

Continued on page 8 This summer, Greg Sloat ‘12 could be found either interning at the Positive Safety Manufacturing Company or studying for the GMAT, in preparation for applying to grad school at JCU.


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This summer, Brian Pestotnik ‘12 could be found doing marketing for AT&T through his management and marketing internship with Accsell, Inc.

A Word From Our Recruitment Chair Ken Clar ’14, Recruitment Chair

It’s amazing to look back on the four years that the Eta Epsilon chapter of Beta Theta Pi has existed, and see how much we have accomplished in such little time. In just four years, we have won Greek Week multiple times, held the highest GPA of all JCU fraternities, received our official charter in the summer of 2010, had 4 consecutive Homecoming Kings, raised over $2,000 to support autism in the Cleveland area, won award after award and much, much more. The main reason why our chapter of Beta Theta Pi has been so successful is because of the high quality members who choose to join the Beta fold year after year. As we look

into the future as a chapter, we take pride in and embrace the chance to find new members that will leave a lasting legacy behind them. When looking for men to join us in this amazing experience, we seek out those who exemplify leadership, cultivate their intellectual ability and dedicate themselves to a purpose beyond themselves.

In the second week of September, we will participate in Formal Recruitment; going bowling, spending time with Milestones Autism Organization and gathering together around a pasta dinner to show why we are truly blazing a unique trail of our own around the John Carroll community.

The brothers of the Eta Epsilon chapter know that Beta has changed our lives, and we strongly believe that it will have an equally incredible impact on the lives of our future brothers. As a chapter, we look forward to meeting motivated men who are looking to make a mark on the world around them.

Following the Formal Recruitment week of September 12th, we will be attending Wing Night at Pizzazz, an Indians game, and mixing with a sorority! These events will provide even more opportunities for students to meet us, as well as show our new members why Beta will change their lives forever.

A Word From Our President (continued) University of Pittsburgh. Nick Fill ’14 will be taking over Ben’s position as Public Relations Chairman.

Congratulations to… ~ Nicholas ’11 and Katie Saporito Orlando on their June 24th wedding!

We have a few new advisors as well. Alumnus Jurell Sison ’10 is back at JCU as a resident minister in Murphy Hall and is the new leadership development advisor. We have three new Friends of Beta to add to the advisory team, as well. Megan Dzurec, coordinator of health education and promotion at JCU, is the new risk management advisor; Cory Zucker, a friend of Ric Eickhoff’s, is the service/philanthropy advisor; and Dr. Nick Santilli, assoc. prof. of psychology and the director of planning and academic budgeting at JCU, is the new scholarship/faculty advisor.

~ Doug Gault ’09 and Ashley DiNunzio on their engagement!

It is going to be a good year and I can’t wait to see the outcome. I feel that the brothers are excited and passionate about the upcoming semester. With the right determination and motivation we will be able to accomplish all of our goals.

~ Brothers John Jackson ‘13, Dan Imfeld ’13, Ben Rossi ’13, Chris Shaheen ’12, and Nick Skiviat ’12 for receiving 2011 Beta Merit Scholarships!

~ Recruitment advisor and FOB Lisa Lawrence, and her husband Trevor, on the birth of their second son! Luke Patrick Lawrence was born on July 9th. ~ Former Risk Management Advisor Wes Schaub for accepting a new position at Dartmouth College!

This summer, Benedek Toth ‘14 could be found either working at the local Heinen’s Grocery or riding his new jet ski.


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This summer, Chris Saniuk ‘12 could be found at Sam’s Club where he holds a management internship or outdoors working as a landscaper or valet. Vogel Goes Out on Top (continued) Andrew spent two summers at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in his native Columbus studying the bacterium that causes middle ear infections in children. His findings have resulted in presentations at three different conferences. He also received the Biology Leadership Award, given in recognition of demonstrating outstanding leadership through service. Striving to become a better leader, he participated in the Emerging Leader Program (ELP) as a freshman and was a facilitator during his sophomore year. Additionally, he was one of two students on the ELP Advisory Team. Putting to use his refined leadership skills, he also served as a Streak Week Assistance Team (SWAT) leader, helping new students make the transition to JCU. Andrew’s faith has always served as his guide. “For many students at John Carroll, their commitment to their faith is an important part of who they are and how they live their lives. For Andrew, it was and is the most important commitment in his life,” explains Gail Roussey, coordinator of liturgy at JCU. “Every decision he made and every action that he took at John Carroll was taken in the light of his dedication to serving God and neighbor in the context of his Catholic faith,” Roussey said. To honor his participation and dedication to the many areas of campus ministry, Andrew also received the Rev. Joseph Schell, S.J. Award. He was a Eucharistic

minister and lector, and participated in planning sessions regarding the liturgical life of the JCU community. He also served as president of Alpha Omega, the new Roman Catholic Devotions group that organized Festival of Praise, an event featuring praise and worship music with Eucharistic adoration. Andrew was a Christian Life Community leader as well as a Senior Conversations group leader, facilitating discussion with members of his graduating class regarding discernment and vocation. He attended and led several retreats, as well. “He is a man of prayer, one who seeks the giver of all good gifts,” Scarano said. Vogel lived the mission by regularly engaging in service and social outreach both locally and around the world. He has served those living on the streets of Cleveland through the Labre Project and learned about the culture and daily struggles of impoverished Ecuadorians during two immersion experiences to Duran, Ecuador as a participant in 2009 and student coordinator in 2010. The reigning Homecoming King was recognized with one more honor this past May – and fittingly for the individual who always seemed to go above and beyond, the Beaudry Award is the most prestigious of all. Each year, a plaque in memory of Robert Beaudry (JCU Class of 1950) is awarded to one graduating senior who has contributed most significantly in the areas of academic achievement, Christian life, leadership, and service to the university or civic community. Andrew was nominated and selected by his peers to receive the only student award presented during Commencement Exercises on May 22. “I am extremely humbled to be the recipient of these awards,” Vogel concluded. “I had a passion for academics in biology and furthering the mission of campus ministry during my time at JCU. To be granted these awards for activities I loved is truly an honor and I am grateful for all my peers and professors who helped me along the way.”

This summer, Rich Mazzola ’13 could be found working as an instructor with 5th through 8th graders in Tri-C’s “Tech Kids” program. He also enjoyed traveling throughout the Midwest to visit family.


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Parents’ Club Update

Ask a Beta Q: As a parent whose son is considering a fraternity, I’m concerned. Can you offer any insight into how other parents in my position have responded?

in her son’s life. Another now calls herself “a very proud Beta mom.” From skepticism and leeriness to “pleased” and “impressed.”

A: Several parents of active Betas have felt the same way. When asked about the moment they were first approached by their son about joining Beta parents recall feeling “skeptical,” “being a little leery,” and thinking “we are off to a bad start [at college].”

The best advice offered by current Beta parents is this: “when the call comes for your opinion and approval on Beta membership, do not hesitate to be supportive.”

However, after hearing the excitement and passion in their sons’ voices as they talked about Beta and their new friends these parents’ fears were allayed. Now, having seen their sons participate in Beta and interacting with the organization these same parents sing its praises. One parent recounts the positive influence Beta has been

For more information contact a member of the Parents’ Club, read in-depth testimonials from Beta parents past and present at, or experience Eta Epsilon in person at the annual philanthropic fundraiser, Carroll’s Got Talent (CGT), held this year on November 4th. To have your question answered in the next newsletter, send your enquiry to:

Nancy Sloat, Parents’ Club Moderator

The parents’ club has started communicating thru email due to the fact that many parents are located out of town. Because this group started at the end of last school year, this year it is my hope to really get this group off the ground. I would like to take suggestions from other Beta parents and start implementing them. It is my goal to coordinate a parent organized event for our sons at the first get together we have. Last November Eta Epsilon invited their parents to Carroll's Got Talent and afterwards had a nice little reception. The Betas played some games with their parents and we all had a great time. It would be nice for the parents to plan something in that line for their sons. Also, this year I would love to reach out to the prospective and new parents offering to them a Beta parent contact to learn more about this exceptional fraternity! I am excited for the year to begin and am hopeful the Parents' Club will become a solid group!

Eta Epsilon Recognized with Volunteer Appreciation Award (continued) sense their friendly nature, politeness, pride in their school, and their live-life-to-the-fullest spirit.” Each year, the brothers bring their organizational skills and creative juices to produce Carroll’s Got Talent, a university-wide talent show for students and staff. The event showcases some of JCU’s most talented individuals, and is a highlight of the fall semester for many at John Carroll. Students, faculty, parents, and even brothers from the Lambda Kappa-Beta chapter at Case Western Reserve University show their support as all proceeds benefit the Milestones Autism Organization. Last year’s effort was a huge success, raising approximately $1200. The chapter hopes to raise even more during this year’s event, which will be held on November 4. “Beta Theta Pi's Eta Epsilon Chapter has been here to help Milestones anytime we've asked, always exceeding our expectations,” concluded Deena Nyer Mendlowitz, Milestones’ communications liaison. “They have shown us what a fraternity really is about and we are grateful and fortunate for all they have done for us.” This summer, Ken Clar ‘14 could be found working as a management intern at Wegmans.


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Convention, Eta Epsilon’s Report (continued) Andy Lane: During Convention, I also learned more about my personal views on leadership. Leadership is one of those terms that I feel most people associate with positions and rankings. Though this could be true at times, I feel that every person is a leader at every moment in life. When you actually take the time to think about it, it is true. We lead ourselves, our families, our friends, and our co-workers virtually every day. This shows the extreme importance of living a life of actions and not just words, which ties me back to the principles of Beta and why I joined this fraternity. Each day I am challenged to live out Beta’s principles through the actions I make which, if are the right actions, should benefit not only the world around me, but myself. All in all—the atmosphere, overall excitement, energy, programing and food—the Convention was an enjoyable and beneficial experience. I am proud of where our chapter has been and where it plans to go this upcoming year. And, I am proud to be a Beta. John Jackson: For me having fewer men from our own chapter and being the delegate were two changes from last year. I was honored to serve as the Eta Epsilon delegate. Sitting through hours of legislative debate was very interesting and it was in these sessions that I realized Beta Theta Pi Fraternity is truly an undergraduate establishment. Nothing is practiced or revered in the Code of Beta Theta Pi if it is not approved by the undergraduate delegates – we truly are the General Fraternity. I walked away from Convention feeling energized and very proud to be a Beta. I met and now call brothers from all over the United States (University of Maine to UCLA) my friends. It is at Convention that I truly get the sense that this brotherhood is not just for the four years of undergraduate study. The fraternal 50s present at Convention and the Beta Sweethearts that have been to 10+ Conventions are a testament to how good and great this fraternity is. I am proud of Eta Epsilon and I am proud of Beta Theta Pi. I plan on going to Convention next year in Chicago and I hope many other John Carroll Betas decide to join me.

A Look at the Founding of the Parents’ Club S a Eta Epsilon’s Parents’ Club was about what it really means to be a Beta. founded towards the end of the v spring 2011 semester. The first Sloat expects the group will be of official meeting of the club took e most help to these new parents place after the Mothers’ Tea event because she says, “parents of . last spring. existing Betas have already seen t Club Moderator Nancy Sloat has and know what an honor it is to be a Beta parent.” high hopes for this group as it h tries to get off the ground this However, also among the list of e year. One of its driving goals is to goals for this Club is to put to use supply something for new and . the talents of active Beta parents prospective Beta parents that she to help out the fraternity. Sloat wished had been in place during D says, “We are not here to hover her son’s recruitment period. over our sons, but to be there if a That is an outlet to turn to with they need us throughout the t year.” questions and concerns about the organization and for information e 8

9 10

Brotherhood Retreat

9 11-15 Formal Recruitment

10 01

Homecoming and Greek Reunion


Carroll’s Got Talent


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Vol. III, Issue 1

Skiviat Assumes IFC Presidency Joel Mullner, Founding Father, Member Edu. & PR Advisor

also work to recruit new members to sustain the university’s three current fraternities, introduce the newest fraternity (Lambda Chi Alpha) to campus this fall, and facilitate stronger bonds amongst the fraternities.

Nick Skiviat ’12 recently assumed the presidency of John Carroll’s Interfraternity Council (IFC) after the previous president resigned his post. Nick was next in the IFC constitutional line of succession, as he formerly held the role of Vice President of Programming. “I am thrilled to assume the role of IFC president, and very honored to be the first brother of Beta Theta Pi at John Carroll to hold this position,” Skiviat stated. The Interfraternity Council is the governing body of the fraternities at JCU and is responsible for the promotion of scholarship, service, leadership, self-governance, risk Mutual Assistance


management, and public relations among the fraternity chapters on campus. As president, Nick will lead these efforts to push fraternity life forward at John Carroll. Nick plans to focus on increasing Greek support and awareness on campus. He will

Intellectual Growth




Within Beta Theta Pi, Skiviat has served as the Ritual Chairman and currently acts as the Service/Philanthropy Chairman. “Beta has significantly improved my leadership skills. I have seen the need to address conflict and the ways to overcome it, and learned how to bring brothers together,” he said. “I hope to pass the respect and friendship I have learned from Beta to all of the fraternities.”

Responsible Conduct



Eta Epsilon Chapter at John Carroll University 20700 North Park Boulevard University Heights, OH 44118

John Jackson ‘13 President Daniel Imfeld ‘13 Vice President Joel Baker ‘14 Secretary Christopher Saniuk ‘12 Treasurer Benjamin Szweda ‘12 Public Relations Chair

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Want to GO BETA? Know someone who does? Visit for information on joining our ranks as part of the Eta Class!

The Bridge Builder, Summer 2011  

The Quarterly Newsletter Publication of the Eta Epsilon Chapter of Beta Theta Pi at John Carroll University. Inside this issue: Eta Epsilon...

The Bridge Builder, Summer 2011  

The Quarterly Newsletter Publication of the Eta Epsilon Chapter of Beta Theta Pi at John Carroll University. Inside this issue: Eta Epsilon...