The Phi Gamma Delta Magazine - Fall 2020

Page 28


Through the Pandemic "Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence."


his quote may never be as true as it is today, as the Fraternity faces one of its greatest challenges: the COVID-19 pandemic. Overall Phi Gamma Delta remains strong due to the creativity and perseverance of our undergraduate and graduate brothers. We have compiled responses to many of the common questions the Fraternity receives to keep our brothers updated on how the Fraternity and our chapters are adapting and moving forward.

What do campuses look like during the pandemic? Most campuses adopted hybrid instruction models, meaning some or most classes are held online with some, generally smaller, classes in-person. A small number of campuses went fully remote, meaning no inperson classes and in a few cases no students on campus.

Wabash is one of many chapters that have adapted their service project to the pandemic. 28


Even with students on campus, campus life is very different this year. There are limited, if any, in-person gatherings. For our undergraduate chapters that means a lot of the events that we are used to – such as recruitment, philanthropy, social events and even chapter meetings – must be done differently. Student housing, including residence halls and chapter houses, is also operating differently to limit exposure.

What are our chapters doing to adapt? Undergraduate brothers certainly miss the ability to be together in person – as we all do – but, as evidenced by the On Campus section in this issue, chapters are finding innovative ways to keep everyone engaged. From Zoom chapter meetings and new member education, to supporting local COVID-19 relief efforts, they are adjusting every aspect of chapter operations to leverage technology and/or do their work in small groups. We see a lot of changes in chapter house operations as well. House corporations did a great job this summer and fall adapting the resources

and guidance provided by their campuses and the Fraternity’s 1848 Housing Committee to create and execute plans for continued operations. Many chapter houses are operating at a reduced capacity, with enhanced sanitation procedures and modified food service. All of our brothers, from chapter officers to House Corporations and Purple Legionnaires, deserve a lot of credit for their response to the pandemic and for how they have adapted to the different local scenarios and restrictions which they and their chapters face.

How has undergraduate membership been impacted? Overall, the Fraternity’s undergraduate membership is down from last year, but remains stable. Many chapters saw a few brothers not return this fall, but not as many as we expected early on. The Fraternity did lose two young colonies at the start of the fall, and we have a few chapters now struggling with membership. Though recruitment looks very different, many of our chapters have remained successful in

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