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Penn State Thon raises $9,770,332.32 to Battle Pediatric Cancer

46 hours at Thon ended, and then the big reveal showed that the Penn State IFC/Panhellenic dance marathon had raised $9,770,332.32 for the battle against Pediatric Cancer this year. According to this article, 798 dancers participated in the dance marathon, and they had 15,000 total student volunteers.  Every year, I’m just in awe of what the Penn State students are able to do as a community. It’s what defines them and their organizations on campus, and they are willing to stay on their feet for 46 hours to prove it. It’s a year long commitment to raising money for this cause, and showing in action what their values really are. Just this past week I was talking with several Greek communities, and many of them do a good job on their individual community service and philanthropy events within each chapter. However, they weren’t always working with other fraternities and sororities on campus toward a common goal, and this example out of Penn State shows the power you can have when you get everyone’s buy in and are committed to a cause that defines what your University is all about. Congratulations Penn State. I admire the work that you do.

Florida State University IFC waives fees for veterans in fraternities

I was so happy to read this article today talking about the FSU IFC waiving their fees for veterans in fraternities. I’ve met so many veterans around the country that have joined fraternities, and I always ask them what about fraternities was attractive to them. After all, they’ve already served their country, they are typically older than most students, and they have a wealth of experience already. The answer? It’s the brotherhood they miss from being in the military. I’ve also noticed that the veterans have immediately stepped into leadership roles in their fraternity, it was never a question in their minds. I’ve often wondered how we can make our fraternities and sororities even more attractive to veterans, as the number of veterans enrolling at four year institutions is climbing. They are leaders on campus with the experience needed to help our organizations grow and flourish. I believe FSU has found a perfect solution here by waiving the IFC fees for veterans and making it easier for veterans to join Greek Life. I hope this trend continues all over the country. It’s a win for everyone involved. Well done FSU!

Sigma Pi and Sigma Chi Hockey Game For Cancer Research at CMU

I remember reading about this event a year ago at Central Michigan University and thinking about how great the idea was. Sure enough, last year’s Sigma Freeze raised $4,000 for cancer research. Both Sigma Chi and Sigma Pi at CMU play a hockey game against each other at Mount Pleasant Ice Arena, and the money raised goes towards the Huntsman Cancer Institute. So, they are going to have fun playing ice hockey together, raise money for a great cause, build awareness in the community about the values of these two great organizations, and potentially find new members at Central Michigan University that also believe in raising money for cancer research. It’s a home run. If you’re interested in attending the hockey game or making a donation, you can find those links in the newspaper article here. I hope they continue this annual tradition for decades!

Sigma Pi at Cal Poly to Host Suicide Awareness Week

I loved reading this article today about Sigma Pi at Cal Poly hosting their first Suicide Awareness Week on campus. Mental health is something that we don’t talk often enough on college campuses, especially within men’s groups. The number of instances of mental health issues has been climbing, and our fraternities/sororities are in the best position to catch the warning signs before tragedy sets in. Also, the way that the Sigma Pi chapter is setting up the entire week with events is especially effective in building awareness at the University. I frequently see a one night event on campus that is over quickly, but this schedule will reinforce the importance of the issue and give lots of students different ways to process the information and react. Congratulations brothers.