PI KAPPA PHI ALUMNI NEWSLETTER DELTA ALPHA | SPRING 2014
MESSAGE FROM THE ARCHON To the Alumni of the Delta Alpha Chapter: For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Alex Roberson, and I am the 2014 Archon for our chapter. I am currently a junior, studying Economics in the Pamplin College of Business, and will be working as an intern with Altria this summer. I was initiated in the Delta Epsilon Spring 2013 Pledge Class, and since then, I have been heavily involved in the fraternity. Whether being a part of a committee, helping run our philanthropy, or even playing in a band for Sudflood, my passion for this fraternity has not gone unnoticed, and was therefore elected Archon for the 2014 calendar year. Pi Kappa Phi at Virginia Tech has been steadily growing for the last few years, and as Archon, I want to continue this growth. We are currently the third largest fraternity at Virginia Tech with 102 brothers and 20 associates. We now aspire to grow stronger as an organization internally, in our community, and nationally. It is certainly an exciting time to be a part of our organization. Our Executive Board has been working diligently together to make sure the Delta Alpha Chapter runs effectively for the 2014 year. As always, feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com if you ever have any questions or concerns, or just want to reach out. Proud to Be a Brother, Alex Roberson
IN THIS ISSUE CHAPTER UPDATE | PAGE 3
A quick overview of what’s happening with the Delta Alpha chapter.
MID YEAR RECAP | PAGE 4
Learn more about the leadership development our new Executive Board experienced in Baltimore!
SUDFLOOD XXIV | PAGE 5
We raised over $8,500 for Push America while enjoying a great day of music.
GOLF TOURNAMENT | PAGE 6
A great day for our alumni on the Pete Dye River Course.
ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT | PAGE 7-8
Read about the successes brother Kyle Pacque has experienced after graduation!
UPCOMING | PAGE 9
What’s in store for our chapter and our alumni in the coming months?
Spring 2014 Alumni Newsletter | 2
CHAPTER UPDATE CURRENTLY 122 MEMBERS
90 70 50 2009
LARGEST FRATERNITY ON CAMPUS
OF THE 28 IFC FRATERNITIES CURRENTLY AT VIRGINIA TECH
ΑΓΡ ΑΕΠ ΑΣΦ ΑΤΩ ΒΘΠ ΔΣΦ ΔΤΔ FH ΖΨ ΘΞ ΘΧ ΘΔΧ ΚΑ ΚΔΡ ΛΧΑ ΠΚΑ ΠΚΦ ΠΛΦ ΣΑΕ ΣΝ ΣΦΔ ΣΧ ΣΤΓ ΤΚΕ FIJI ΦΔΘ ΦΚΤ ΦΣΚ
Alex Roberson | firstname.lastname@example.org
Nathan Barth | email@example.com
Jackson Beck | firstname.lastname@example.org
Brandon Chandler | email@example.com
Josh Mensinger | firstname.lastname@example.org
Steven Gethard | email@example.com
Tommy Dickson | firstname.lastname@example.org
Brian Halvorsen | email@example.com
BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS
BROTHERS RIDING JOURNEY OF HOPE IN 2014
RAISED DURING WAR OF THE ROSES AND SUDFLOOD
INITIATED MEMBERS OF THE DELTA ALPHA CHAPTER
MID YEAR LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE In January, our newly elected officers gathered in Baltimore for Pi Kapp’s Mid Year Leadership Conference. We joined 40+ other chapters from our region for a weekend of education and development. Each officer was placed into a “track” related to their exec responsibilities. Learning from facilitators, we planned new leadership strategies for the year ahead. On our final day, we pieced together a plan of action to roll out our new knowledge to the rest of Mid Years Recap the chapter. The most effective part of the weekend was the opportunity to collaborate with brothers from across the country. It was amazing to see how other chapters do things differently from us. As one of the largest chapters in attendance, we were able to share our perspective and strategies with other chapters that are growing quickly. A few of the brothers we met even made the trip to Blacksburg for Sudflood! During a banquet dinner on the last night, a number of awards were handed out to recognize outstanding achievement. Delta Alpha won a number of these awards, locking up a strong 2013. Mid Year Leadership Conference was an outstanding opportunity to learn and grow as an exec board, meet brothers from across the country, and get to know the representatives and facilitators from our national headquarters.
AWARDS WON BY DELTA ALPHA: CHAMPION MASTER CHAPTER Overall chapter excellence, awarded to 16 chapters. COMMITMENT TO CONTINUED GROWTH OUTSTANDING BRANDING AND COMMUNICATION MOST IMPROVED CAMPUS INVOLVEMENT RECRUITMENT EXCELLENCE AWARD
Spring 2014 Alumni Newsletter | 4
SUDFLOOD XXIV There are few better days in the year than Sudflood. The 24th installment of this annual event was no exception. We were fortunate to receive great Spring weather throughout the day, allowing us to fully enjoy the outdoor music in the afternoon. Over 1000 people attended, including a number of alumni. The day was started off by performances by fraternity bands, including the crowd favorite, Seductive Flux, in what was possibly their final appearance together. The sumptuous vocals of lead singer Joe Ciurlino prepared the crowd for the day to come.
Sudflood continues to be a great opportunity for alumni to return to Blacksburg, reconnect with brothers, meet the active chapter, and support our great philanthropy. If you havenâ€™t been able to make it in recent years, we hope to see you in 2015. If you have any suggestions on how the event can be improved we would love to hear it! Planning for Sudflood XXV has already begun!
Soon after, the headliner, Moon Taxi, took the stage. From Nashville, Tennessee, Moon Taxi has developed quite a following. They even performed on the Late Show with David Letterman earlier this year. They certainly lived up to expectations, bringing out a number of fans and putting on an awesome show to cap off the outdoor portion of the day. From there, a number of bands performed inside of T.O.T.S to round out the night. Everyone in attendance had a blast, and the event proved to be a huge success for our chapter. We are happy to report that this was the highest attended and most financially successful Sudflood in history! A total of $8,504 was raised for Push America, doubling the number we brought in last year. A huge shout out goes to Alex Miller who planned the entire event.
MORE THAN DOUBLING OUR PREVIOUS SUDFLOOD! Spring 2014 Alumni Newsletter | 5
2014 ALUMNI GOLF TOURNAMENT In an effort to create more events for our alumni, we planned a golf tournament to be held on April 5th, the morning of Sudflood. A website, pikappgolf.com, was established to inform and manage registrations. Thank you to all who came out! There are few golf courses as spectacular as the Pete Dye River Course in Radford, Virginia. We enjoyed a brisk Spring morning that turned into a very comfortable warm afternoon. The lengthy holes and small greens challenged most of us, but it was still a great time for all in attendance. The top team of the day consisted of: ED CORTLETT MARK FAJNA DANNY CARPENTER JAMES MICHENER After the tournament, the group headed back to Blacksburg, just in time for the start of Sudflood. We hope to continue the golf tournament tradition for years to come. What do you want the event to be like? If you have any input, shoot an e-mail to Marcus Wood (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will incorporate your ideas in the planning of the 2015 tournament.
ALUMNI GOLF TOURNAMENT
Spring 2014 Alumni Newsletter | 6
ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT CHECK OUT WHAT BROTHER KYLE PACQUÉ HAS BEEN UP TO SINCE GRADUATION! Growing up, I sometimes heard myself referred to as a third culture kid (TCK) - someone who has spent a significant part of his/her developmental years outside his/her parents’ culture and therefore builds an identity around multiple cultures. My American mother met my Belgian father in the Congo, where she was a Peace Corps Volunteer and he was working as a physician. Since they both have careers in international health, I had the opportunity to live and travel extensively abroad, including six years in Bamako, Mali. Having a circle of friends consisting of diverse ethnic, socioeconomic and religious individuals and values, I came to value “differences” at an early age. My parents also always made sure we remembered how privileged we were and that most people live where their only “wants” are what they “need” to survive each day. Years later, living away from home as a Virginia Tech undergrad, it became increasingly clear that my life experiences set me apart from the average student. I had expected college to be the place where individualism would thrive, but I found the opposite. Upon joining my fraternity, I observed that the goal of many of my friends was to conform to sociallyaccepted norms and behaviors, which were not consistent with the fraternity’s values. There was little sensitivity to or acceptance of students who were “different.” Whether it be how my fraternity brothers viewed women (based on ingrained masculinity norms), evaluated pledges (by minimizing the importance of diversity) or heedlessly spent money, I increasingly experienced dissonance whenever I engaged in these behaviors that opposed values I knew were central to my identity.
research opportunity my junior year, I was accepted into the Center for Applied Behaviors Systems (CABS) where I quickly became involved with the Actively Caring for People (AC4P) Movement. In the wake of the Virginia Tech tragedy of April 2007, CABS’ founder, Dr. Scott Geller, and a group of students decided to pursue the development and testing of anti-bullying interventions. They initiated the AC4P Movement, which promotes behaviors that go above and beyond the call of duty on behalf of the health, safety or welfare of another person. In retrospect, I can now say that the most important career decision I ever made was to become involved with AC4P. Due to my investment in and passion for AC4P and its research portfolio, I was asked to serve CABS as an undergraduate researcher my last semester senior year (spring 2013). I was tasked with the development of an AC4P approach adapted to university settings. Working independently, I designed an innovative pilot project using social network analysis (SNA) to determine how to influence and cultivate an actively caring fraternal culture.
I felt alienated from my closest friends, and thus began searching for a group that shared my worldview. Serendipitously, in seeking an undergraduate Spring 2014 Alumni Newsletter | 7
ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT Applying research-based frameworks from various fields and SNA, my study’s objective was to assess how an individual’s placement in a social network assessed by measures of power, influence and three forms of friendship (e.g., utility, pleasure, goodness) impacted performance and recognition of prosocial behaviors. During my senior year I presented oral presentations of my research at the Virginia Psychological Association Spring Convention, the Virginia Academy of Science Convention, and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators Conference on College Men. Following further enhanced my research, the next year I was fortunate to present oral presentations at the Association of Fraternity/ Sorority Advisors Annual Meeting, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators Annual Conference, and the Association for Behavior Analysis International Annual Convention. In my pilot research, it was the brothers of Pi Kappa Phi who served as participants. Even knowing they would receive no compensation for their participation, the majority of the brotherhood voluntarily participated in my research, and for that reason I am forever grateful to the brothers of Pi Kappa Phi. Subsequently, I can say without a shred of doubt, the majority of my success has emerged thanks to the fraternity. My experiences in Pi Kappa Phi as an undergrad may not have always been positive, but they challenged me and shaped me into the individual I am today. I joined Pi Kappa Phi on probation with Virginia Tech for underage drinking, and four years later was hired by the university as a Leadership Assistant for the FSL Office… Funny how things turn out, but I believe it accurately reflects my personal growth over the past five years. Following graduation, I sought to continue my affiliation with AC4P while working part-time and was fortunate to be selected for a position as the Leadership Assistant for Virginia Tech’s Fraternity and Sorority Life (FSL) in the Division of Student Affairs. In addition to my FSL position, I also serve as a Community Support Specialist for AC4P. In this role I conduct outreach with higher education institu-
tions to facilitate and support the development and implementation of actively caring approaches for various settings and initiatives. These experiences have fueled my passion to bring about evidencedbased organizational change using research that promotes and builds upon inclusive, culturally-sensitive behaviors, values and norms. Though I have not been able to stay as involved with the local chapter as I would like, this summer I will engage with Pi Kappa Phi on a national level by becoming trained as an Alcohol Skills Training Program Facilitator, as well as a Huddle Facilitator for Pi Kapp College. Through these roles I will be able to engage and develop rising leaders in Pi Kappa Phi, and hopefully provide a positive impact on chapters across the nation. I may be miles away from my chapter, but through these roles I hope to live out lifetime membership. I am also proud to say that this fall I will be pursing a Masters of Arts in Student Affairs Administration at Michigan State University. I will serve their fraternity and sorority community as a graduate assistant for Greek Affairs. Though it may seem like I plan on becoming a fraternity/ sorority expert, upon the completion of my Master’s degree I plan to work as university consultant for AC4P. I hope to work with universities that values using evidence and research to drive programming and institutional change. Given my international background and the opportunities I have had to live and travel abroad, including in sub-Saharan Africa, I could see myself working internationally, as well as domestically. I do anticipate eventually continuing for either a MBA or Ph.D. While I am currently interested in organizational change and leadership, I believe my graduate school experiences and professional opportunities once I receive my Master’s will be critical in shaping my decision about my eventual field of specialty. Ultimately, my vision is to be the expert who is called upon or referenced when institutions desire to cultivate more motivated, engaged and compassionate students and communities using prosocial-, promotion- and proactive-focused interventions. Spring 2014 Alumni Newsletter | 8
UPCOMING SUMMER ALUMNI EVENT In an effort to make alumni events more accessible, we plan to host an event in DC during the summer. Keep an eye open for an e-mail regarding the scheduling of this event. At the moment, we are looking into group packages for a Washington Nationals game, potentially around the same day as the JOH ride-in. Any suggestions? Contact James Hamon at email@example.com
WHAT ARE THEY UP TO? “In August, 2013 I completed my 10th year at Northrop Grumman where I am the program manager for a contract with the U.S. Army. The program was recently awarded the 2013 Northrop Grumman Chairman’s Award for Excellence, one of only nine programs to be selected for the company’s highest honor recognizing performance in program, operational, and customer excellence.” -Chris Little DA 74
“Completed my PharmD program and am in training to be a critical care pharmacy specialist. “ -Brad McDaniel DA 615 “I am currently working at the Blue Ridge Gatorade Plant in Wytheville, VA, serving as the plant’s Health, Safety and Environmental Supervisor. I have been in the role for almost one year now and enjoy the new experiences that each day brings. “ -Andrew Shafer DA 713
JOURNEY OF HOPE 2014 Delta Alpha has prided itself on consistent involvement in Journey of Hope on a yearly basis. This year, we are thankful to have 5 more brothers dedicating their summers to those with disabilities:
Ryan Alkire- firstname.lastname@example.org Evan Eshelman- email@example.com Darren Miller- firstname.lastname@example.org TJ Scott- email@example.com Sam Johsnon- firstname.lastname@example.org Brothers will be passing through Blacksburg on July 26th. All three routes will be concluding in DC on August 2nd. Join us in welcoming them!
Interested in supporting our brothers?
A CLOSING FROM THE HISTORIAN BrothersJoining Pi Kappa Phi has done more for me than I ever imagined it would. I never planned to join a fraternity as I came to Blacksburg, but it has proven to be the best decision I have made in college. It’s hard to believe I will also be an alumni in a matter of months, but it has motivated me to continue serving on our Executive Board to help improve our alumni experience which has lacked quality for so long. Please reach out to me with any thoughts or ideas you have about alumni events, communication, or other opportunities for improvement. We have been working hard to plan events such as the Golf Tournament for you to attend and hope to continue this progress for years to come. Ultimately, we would like to get a group of motivated alumni who are interested in operating an alumni association independent of the chapter. The benefits of such an addition are endless to the value of our chapter and your input would be welcomed. Our chapter is in an incredible spot right now and we hope to continue positive growth in the semesters to come! Please let us know if you are ever in Blacksburg! Yours in Pi Kappa Phi, Steven Gethard email@example.com 732-642-4595
WANT TO DONATE? We appreciate any financial support you can provide the chapter. House improvements, events, and other chapter operations can be taken to the next level with your help! The below PayPal link is the easiest way to contribute. Please contact our treasurer, Brandon Chandler, if you have any questions. Currenly, we are working to raise money for a renovation of our LBR, shown to the right. This room is used for meetings, studying, interviews, and more. Working with a contractor, we are hoping to install a new book shelf, purchase new furniture, and more! A better LBR will positively impact all brothers in our chapter and be an attractive house addition to potential new members. We hope to begin the renovation this summer.
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