The Phi Gamma Delta Magazine - Fall 2020

Page 23

[ On Campus ]



his year has taught Phi Gams across North America all about adaptability, adjustments and persistence. These lessons were especially profound as the Fraternity worked to welcome our three newest chapters. Brothers at Texas State University, the University of Texas San Antonio and the University of Tampa had demonstrated years of hard work as colonies prior to the pandemic. Unfortunately, just as they began preparations to celebrate their charterings, COVID-19 put a halt to those plans. However, through persistence, creativity and a lot of patience, all three colonies chartered safely and successfully this fall. Through consultation with Ritualist Justin Burns (Ohio State 2007) and Headquarters staff, modifications were made to the traditional initiation and banquet ceremonies that historically had been a time of grand celebration within Phi Gamma Delta. Brothers wore masks, socially distanced and made sacrifices to keep each other and their graduate advisors safe. Brothers at Texas State decided to forego a traditional banquet altogether. Instead they conducted a modified version of the initiation ceremony to receive their charter and badges. Texas San Antonio and Tampa scaled back their banquets and modified their initiations in the interest of keeping

Fall 2020

brothers and volunteers safe. We thank the local graduate brothers who played integral roles in making these unique charterings successful. The International Fraternity traditionally sends a delegation to each chartering to assist in the initiation and welcoming of a new chapter. Unfortunately, the pandemic prevented staff and volunteers from traveling to Texas and Florida this fall, so some necessary adaptations were made. Executive Director Rob Caudill (Akron 2004) and Archon President Nic Loiacono (Illinois 1974) utilized Zoom video-conferencing software to deliver some of the traditional remarks and history of our Fraternity expanding to new colleges and universities. Although both brothers would have greatly preferred to welcome our new chapters in person, they were grateful for the opportunity to deliver their congratulations in a virtual format. The Fraternity intends to work with local graduates and chapters to provide more of the traditional inperson chartering and initiation experiences to these three chapters when the effects of the pandemic subside. We welcome and celebrate our newest chapters of Sigma Upsilon at Texas State, Sigma Alpha at Texas San Antonio and Tau Beta at Tampa!

Sigma Upsilon at Texas State University | Re-Chartering

• Date: August 29, 2020 • Original Charter Date: November 10, 1990 (as Southwest Texas State University) • Chapter President: Jesse Khaled (2021)