Posts Tagged ‘Alpha Tau Omega’

Great awards follow a great year in Greek Life

Monday, May 2nd, 2011


Fraternity members celebrate success in 2010-2011 academic year. (Photo by Daniel M. Reck.)

It’s been a big year for Greek Life at Monmouth College.  Thousands of dollars have been raised for charity, thousands of hours have been given in service, and hundreds of students have enjoyed academic success.

The pinnacle of each year is Greek Week, which recently concluded with the Annual Greek Life Awards.  All seven Greek organizations came together, raised over $1,050 for Haiti earthquake relief, and organized a record-setting blood drive.

“Greek Week this year was a magnificent success!” says Haleigh Turner ’12, Greek Week Chair and President of Pi Beta Phi. “Every chapter came together on multiple occasions to hang out, have a great time, possibly get slimmed, and show campus that no matter our letters we are a unified Greek System.

Through Penny Wars and a Car Bash, Greeks raised $1,054.13, which will go to Lights for Haiti through Citizen Effect. The money raised will help provide solar-powered lanterns to Haitians who are still recovering from the earthquake that devastated the country two years ago.

There were many events during Greek Week, from a Bop-It tournament, Slime-Time, karaoke, trivia, a scavenger hunt, and philanthropies; perhaps one of the most memorable was the All-Greek Candle Pass.

“It really meant a lot to see brothers and sisters from different organizations linked together representing not only our unity during Greek Week but our forever support of one another as we passed a significant item from each chapter as well as sang our songs,” says Turner.

The Greek Week show allowed fraternity members to show off their values, pride, and humor as they put on four 1990s-themed acts. In addition to the shows put on by Greek organizations, the so-called Greek God and Goddess, along with their Demigod and Demigoddess counterparts, competed in talent, questions, and overall participation to win the titles.

The men of Sigma Phi Epsilon and the women of Pi Beta Phi won the Greek Show on Thursday night with their medley of references to 90s television shows and dance numbers. The men of Zeta Beta Tau, teamed up with a mix of women from each women’s fraternity dubbed The Panhellenic Alliance, won the banner contents, which was also announced at the Greek Week show.

Greek Week ended on Friday with the Annual Greek Life Awards banquet. Greeks dressed to impress and to raise awareness for autism. Alpha Xi Delta women handed out blue ribbons for World Autism Awareness Day, which coincided with the awards program.  Outside, Wallace Hall’s famous copula was lit in a brilliant blue as part of the national “Light It up Blue” campaign for Autism Awareness Month. The Empire State Building in New York City, along with many other landmarks, were also awash in blue for the night.

The banquet, held in the specially-decorated cafeteria, brought together fraternity members from every organization to celebrate their successes and the success of their fellow brothers and sisters. The guest list not only included fraternity members, but faculty, advisors, deans, and President Mauri Ditzler.

The women of Alpha Xi Delta won Overall Greek Week for their fourth year running as well as many other chapter and individual awards.

“We have worked hard to better ourselves and to follow our National Fraternity motto, ‘realize your potential,’” says Kim Dwyer ’12, President of Alpha Xi Delta. “It was exciting to see all of our hard work pay off.  Our chapter is more than grateful and proud of one another.”

Although each of the awards are of high honor, the most prestigious award that can be earned at Monmouth College is the award for Outstanding Chapter Operations. This year, Pi Beta Phi earned this award.

Recipients of the 2011 Greek Life Awards were:

  • Academic Excellence Award – Alpha Xi Delta
  • Excellence in Campus Involvement and Leadership – Phi Delta Theta
  • Outstanding Chapter Program – Xi Man, Alpha Xi Delta
  • Award for Excellence in Community Service and Philanthropy – Phi Delta Theta
  • Outstanding Advisor – Denise Turnbull, Pi Beta Phi
  • Emerging Female Leader – Lydia Butler, Alpha Xi Delta
  • Emerging Male Leader – Jeff Skalon, Alpha Tau Omega
  • Outstanding Greek President – Leah Statler, Pi Beta Phi
  • Greek Woman of the Year – Kristen Wyse, Alpha Xi Delta
  • Greek Man of the Year (Cy Reagan Award) – John Cayton, Phi Delta Theta
  • The Richard “Doc” Kieft Award – Rodney Clayton, Phi Delta Theta
  • Outstanding Chapter Operations – Pi Beta Phi
  • Greek Week Spirit Award – Alpha Xi Delta
  • Greek God and Goddess – Andrew Farraher, Sigma Phi Epsilon and Ashley May, Alpha Xi Delta
  • Greek Demi-God and Demi-Goddess – Alex Mackley, Zeta Beta Tau and Courtney Jonsson, Alpha Xi Delta
  • Overall Greek Week Winners – Alpha Xi Delta

“Winning the Chapter Operations Award is a true honor”, said Turner. “Leah, as President, and our executive board, worked hard to excel our chapter to one that adheres not only to a loving sisterhood but one with high standards for our sisters.” μ

Michelle Bruce ‘12

Also of Interest

$1,650 raised for autism research in Xi Man competition

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Kyle Vancil ’12, representing Phi Delta Theta, was crowned Xi Man 2011, impressing judges and the audience alike with a chemistry-comedy talent, SCUBA sportswear, an impressive formalwear round, and raising over $500. “I felt like I was helping a great cause, while having a blast with the other contestants,” said Vancil.

Men like Vancil came from across the Monmouth College campus to support Autism Speaks in Alpha Xi Delta’s male pageant philanthropy, Xi Man, on Feb 25.

Alpha Xi  collected $1,650.13 to benefit the charity, which is Alpha Xi’s national philanthropy partner and all of the money raised from Xi Man went to the organization. 1,650.13oooo Autism Speaks works to increase awareness of autism and is an advocate for the needs of those suffering from autism and their families. Autism refers to several disorders which interfere with the mental development of children, causing lifelong disability.

Fundraising began two weeks before the event with a table outside of the cafeteria.  Some participants and their coaches visited residence halls to ask students for money. The Xi Man competitor who raised the most money won the full 50 points for their fundraising score, making up half of their overall score.

Participants in Xi Man competed in five categories: Group dance, talent, sportswear, formalwear, and a quiz about Alpha Xi. The men were also asked two questions during the formalwear round, one serious and one not-so-serious.

“It is so important to our chapter to not only raise money for Autism Speaks but to educate the campus about the severity of autism,” said Annie Soto ’12, Philanthropy Chair of Alpha Xi Delta. “Xi Man is a great way to accomplish both.”

Autism Speaks funds research to find preventions, causes, treatments for autism, and works to support the search for a cure for the disorder, which affects an estimated 1.5 million individuals in the United States.

Alpha Xi Delta not only raised money for Autism Speaks, but brought together men from all over campus. Represented in Xi Man 2011 were Zeta Beta Tau, Alpha Tau Omega, Phi Delta Theta, ASAP, Scotsmen, WMCR, SOUP, and Football.

“I couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome of the pageant and I only hope everyone who attended and participated enjoyed it as much as I did,” said Soto. μ

Michelle Bruce ‘12

Also of Interest:

Greeks devote hearts to homecoming

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

With the falling of the leaves and autumn in full bloom, the annual rite of homecoming has visited Monmouth College.  There were a plethora of reasons to be excited for this tradition: the football game, the parade around town, and a celebration of Greek Life.   This is a special time for Greek Life because all the traditions which show Greek Life’s strength on campus were on display for the weekend.

The Spirit Shout on Friday evening featured organizations from all around campus battled to see who had the best dance moves and most Fighting Scots spirit.  Men’s and women’s fraternities were paired together fir this event. The women of Pi Beta Phi and the men of Zeta Beta Tau took first place for the Spirit Shout, followed by Kappa Kappa Gamma and Sigma Phi Epsilon.  Even the Theta Chi Fraternity alums made a strong showing at the parade, with a bold red banner displayed outside their old home, which is now the Intercultural House.

Following the Spirit Shout, the homecoming royal court was announced, and the court was loaded with Greeks.  SigEps Ben Morrow ’11 and Galvin Halpin ‘12 won Senior King and Junior Prince, respectively. Alpha Xi president Kristen Wyse ‘11, was crowned Senior Queen. Danielle Kita ’12, also of Alpha Xi, won Junior Princess.

The sunny Saturday morning started with the homecoming parade.  Chapter appeared with floats, shopping carts, and even in a kazoo band.  Pi Beta Phi won first place for their parade float, while Alpha Xi Delta and Kappa Kappa Gamma earned second and third place.

Greeks also lead the homecoming banner competition, with SigEp and Alpha Xi tied for first place. Pi Phi was judged to be the overall homecoming champion among all student organizations.

With the celebration of Greek Life, Kappa Kappa Gamma had an extra special homecoming week while they celebrated the 140th anniversary of KKG’s founding.  KKG was founded in 1870 at Monmouth College and is one of the original woman’s fraternities.  Kappa has spread 130 chapters all over North America.

New for 2010, homecoming featured open houses for all seven Greek chapters.  Alumni, current students, and everyone else interested in Greek Life were welcome to visit.  The houses were open to everyone on Saturday afternoon following the football game.  Alums shared stories of their college experiences while members showed off their chapters’ recent accomplishments.

Homecoming is a time that mixes the traditions of old with the excellence of the present.  Theologian Tryon Edwards once said “every reunion is a type of heaven,” and so Greek alums and current Greek members alike were in full force, with hearts devoted to their Fighting Scot’s pride, and perhaps bringing a bit of heaven to Monmouth for the weekend.

Alex Woods ’12 and Michelle Bruce ‘12

Also of interest:

New members dive into Greek Life

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

“I got a chance to connect with people that I would have never gotten the chance to meet without the New Member Retreat,” said Cyrus Turner ‘14, a new member of Sigma Phi Epsilon.

This is a major goal of the annual Greek New Member Retreat, where men and women from all seven fraternities at Monmouth College spend the day working on team building, Greek unity, and learning how to live up to a positive image for the entire Greek system.  Facilitated by a group of upper class members, the retreat took place at Camp Summit in New Windsor, Ill.

It was a full day at Camp Summit, starting with buses leaving campus at 9 o’clock on Sunday, October 19.  Activities and games included canoeing and the “the wall,” where teams involving every men’s and women’s fraternity worked together to get members over a 20-foot tall obstacle.  Goal-setting sessions were also held within each chapter.  Chapters also discussed how to combat negative stereotypes and set goals. 

Overall, the retreat was an opportunity for new members of Greek Life to come together with their new brothers and sisters.  “I really enjoyed getting to know everyone,” said Turner.

Jeff Skalon ‘12, new member of Alpha Tau Omega was impressed with the team building activities.  Skalon said “we had to work as a team to accomplish throughout the day, especially when it came to the wall.” 

While this was a positive experience for new members, it was the upperclassmen of Greek Life who worked hard to put together the weekend.  Jennifer Wheeler ‘12, member of Pi Beta Phi and president of the Panhellenic Council, attended and helped organize the retreat.  “I believe the new member retreat went extremely well this year,” she said.  “All the new members were really receptive about learning about Greek Life and being able to build their teamwork skills with the other members of the pledge class.”

The retreat also marked the beginning of National Hazing Prevention Week.  Hazing, as defined in Illinois State law, is “any action or situation that intentionally causes embarrassment, harassment or ridicule, or risks emotional and/or physical harm, regardless of the person’s willingness to participate.” 

Hazing, as a stereotypical behavior of Greek organizations, continues to plague the fraternity community even as the groups prohibit it and do extensive education about preventing it.  All men’s and women’s fraternity members signed Greek Life Membership Agreements in which they agreed to prevent any hazing at Monmouth College, and to uphold their fraternal values.

The annual Greek Life New Member retreat reminds everyone that these new members are the future leaders of the Greek System.  “I think the retreat helped the new members become stronger leaders and they are better prepared to take our organizations further,” said Wheeler. μ

Alex Woods ‘12

Also of interest:

Greek Life kicks off recruitment year with strong start

Monday, September 20th, 2010

With the 2010-2011 school year just beginning, it is time for men’s and women’s fraternities at Monmouth College to recruit their future leaders.   With the end of formal fall recruitment, Greek Life has recharged and reloaded with a new class of young men and women ready to become the new faces of Greek Life.

The women’s fraternities have started off the year well.  Kappa Kappa Gamma was able to meet to meet its annual quota with 15 new members.  The women of Pi Beta Phi have been joined by 16 new members.  Leading the pack among women’s fraternities, Alpha Xi Delta has inducted 17 future leaders with plans to offer more bids as the year continues.

For the men, Zeta Beta Tau recruited eight new brothers.  Alpha Tau Omega has nine new members.  Ten men have joined the brotherhood at Sigma Phi Epsilon.  Phi Delta Theta made a showing by bringing 14 men into their growing brotherhood.

Phi Delta Theta approached recruitment with some new ideas regarding the process.  According to John Cayton, Phi Delt’s Recruitment Co-Chair, “there was a sharing of the responsibility of recruiting rather than one person doing the bulk of the workload.”  He said that this is vital because it takes more than one person to recruit; it takes an entire chapter to ensure that the best men or women become a part of Greek Life.

Lauryn Pearson, recruitment officer from Kappa Kappa Gamma, was very enthusiastic about this year’s recruitment.  “My favorite part about my job was being able to deliver the bids.”  Pearson went on to say, “being there when the girls open their door and have some of them cry because they’re so happy or just be really excited and have a huge smile on their face, definitely made all the late nights of recruitment and long planning throughout the summer worthwhile.”

Recruitment may take many days, weeks, and months, but the end result is what keeps the system going and growing.

While there have been rumors about this being a down year for Greek recruitment, the numbers show otherwise.  The numbers of each fraternity (men’s and women’s) have shown recruitment is on track when compared to recent years.  In fact, more women have joined woman’s fraternities than last year.  While some women did drop out early in the recruitment process, this is a normal phenomenon that happens every year at every college that has a Greek Life system.

Although formal rush is over, it doesn’t mean that someone interested in joining Greek Life has missed out.   Most chapters run year-round recruitment and may offer invitations to join throughout the semester.

Interested students should be on the lookout for upcoming recruitment events for both men’s and women’s fraternity recruitment events and opportunities. Think of this as watching a baseball game.  You can’t declare a winner after the third inning.  There is still a lot of game left to go, and in the same token, there is still a lot of recruitment left.   Formal recruitment was a success according to officers throughout the Greek Life community, but recruitment is a year-long process and is never truly over.  μ

Alex Woods ’12

ATO and Pi Phi’s Halloween treat

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

Halloween, to some, is known as a time to dress up in scary, ghoulish costumes, and to try and scare the holy heck out of your friends.  But there is the softer side of the holiday; the treats to the younger generations.  With the help of Alpha Tau Omega and Pi Beta Phi, the treat of fun and good will were passed along. 

This was all made possible by the Monmouth Chamber of Commerce Halloween Party.  Both ATO and Pi Phi helped set up the event by decorating, running the craft and games table, and cleaning up the venue after all the games and fun were finished.  The interaction that both the Greeks and the children got will be memories that will last a lifetime. 

This was not only a great way for ATO and Pi Phi to give back to the community, but also a great way to show Greek unity.  Zach Parkes, ATO’s philanthropy chair, said of the event, “the [event] went very well, and I’m glad to see that two different Greek organizations can come together and make a positive impact on the community.”  Without the combined effort of both fraternities, there is no doubt that the party would not have been the success it was.  Haleigh Turner, Pi Phi’s philanthropy chair, shared the same sentiment saying that giving service is “always a great way to give back to the community, but being able to work with another organization that is just as compassionate as us makes the experience a fun time for all.”  When asked about working with ATO, Turner said “I would enjoy working with the men of ATO in the future,” a huge complement to the fraternity. 

Service events like this are the things that make Greeks stand out as a system.  Giving back to the community is what separates Greeks from most of the campus. These are memories that will be remembered by the children and Greeks that worked with them. More than just candy and costumes, the joy that the kids got from being around outstanding Greeks and better role models, is a treat that will last beyond Halloween for both sides. μ

Alex Woods ‘12

Greek Spotlight: Meet the Presidents: Matt Travnik

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

My post graduation goals are to join a company that will give me the freedom to travel all over the world for business. The skills I have learned through Greek life and specifically ATO will be essential to any success I will have. Having to work as not only the head of a large organization but also among other presidents forced me to learn how to compromise in order to achieve the goal of the group. While we are all different, it has been rewarding working with so many people who come from completely different backgrounds than myself. It is really natural for me to carry the values of my organization to the real world because like most of our other Greek organizations on campus, they are common things that most people believe in and we just put a special emphasis on them. We force ourselves to think consciously about showing love and respect to people who we may not have ever gotten to know before.

Matt Travnik, New Lennox, Illinois, is president of Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity at Monmouth College. He is majoring in international business.

Chapters, members earn awards

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009


Emerging Female Leader: Katie Argentine of Pi Beta Phi
Emerging Male Leader: Alex Holt of Sigma Phi Epsilon
Greek Man of the Year (Cy Reagan Award): Kyle Christensen of Phi Delta Theta
Greek Woman of the Year: Ariana Carbone of Pi Beta Phi
Academic Excellence Award: Kappa Kappa Gamma
Excellence in Campus Involvement & Leadership: Alpha Xi Delta
Outstanding Greek President: Melissa Metz of Pi Beta Phi
Outstanding Advisor: Karen Orgorzalek for Alpha Xi Delta and Alpha Tau Omega
Greek Week Spirit Award: Phi Delta Theta
Greek God: Ryan Gutierrez of Sigma Phi Epsilon
Greek Goddess: Morgan Koss of Alpha Xi Delta
Overall Greek Week Winner: Alpha Xi Delta
Greek Week Show: Alpha Tau Omega and Panhellenic Alliance
Greek Week Banner: Alpha Xi Delta and Zeta Beta Tau


Emerging Female Leader: Katie Argentine of Pi Beta Phi

Emerging Male Leader: Alex Holt of Sigma Phi Epsilon

Greek Man of the Year (Cy Reagan Award): Kyle Christensen of Phi Delta Theta

Greek Woman of the Year: Ariana Carbone of Pi Beta Phi

Academic Excellence Award: Kappa Kappa Gamma

Excellence in Campus Involvement & Leadership: Alpha Xi Delta

Outstanding Greek President: Melissa Metz of Pi Beta Phi

Outstanding Advisor: Karen Orgorzalek for Alpha Xi Delta and Alpha Tau Omega

Greek Week Spirit Award: Phi Delta Theta

Greek God: Ryan Gutierrez of Sigma Phi Epsilon

Greek Goddess: Morgan Koss of Alpha Xi Delta

Overall Greek Week Winner: Alpha Xi Delta

Greek Week Show: Alpha Tau Omega and Panhellenic Alliance

Greek Week Banner: Alpha Xi Delta and Zeta Beta Tau

In Brief: April 2009

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009
  • Alpha Xi Delta Fraternity is the Greek Week overall champion.
  • Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity and the Panhellenic Alliance team won the Greek Week show completion.
  • Phi Delta Theta raises $2,500 for the ALS Foundation with their home run derby.

ATO establishes new board of trustees

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

After years without a board of trustees, the men of Alpha Tau Omega have recently come together to develop a new board with the help of their alumni and advisor, Dean Ogorzalek.  “We have not had a [board of trustees] for years and we feel very confident that we can do some good.  The alumni we have now are excited to work with us and we are excited to work with them,” says junior Matt Travnik, ATO chapter president. The newly formed board will work with alumni relations, finances of the chapter, and if needed will serve as a disciplinary board for the members of ATO.  The forming of this alumni panel is monumental for the men of ATO because it has been so long since the last one was in session. Not many ATO chapters have gone without one for such a long period of time.  Travnik says, “We feel lucky to finally have a [board of trustees] and we have to give many thanks to the generous alumni and to the hard work of our advisor, Dean Ogorzalek.”  The men of ATO look forward to making some progress and this board will definitely help them to achieve that. μ

Matt Bentley ‘10