Chapter Update May 2010:
Matt Marret Spring ’09 held the position of IFC Recruitment. He organized the first recruitment event that brought fraternities all together, IFC Casino Night. Socially on campus, Chi Omega invited our entire pledge class to their crush party this spring. Alpha Chi Omega's Yacht social is on the 13th, over 30% of their girls invited Sigma Chi's. Alpha Chi Omega, Chi Omega and Delta Zeta, Derby days 2010 Winners, had over 20 girls per sorority participating in Derby Days this year. Zeta Tau Alpha and Delta Gamma had fewer girls participating because of conflicting events; however they still had an impressive showing. Every Sorority, with the exception of Phi Mu's scheduling conflict, participated in Derby Days this year. Last year 4 of the 6 sororities participated, and the attendance was closer to 10 girls per sorority. We also held a mixer for every sorority on campus during this spring semester. All six accepted bids. Other fraternities only held a mixer for, at most, two or three sororities.
Leadership and Alumni Support:
There is no doubt that we have continued to follow the footsteps outlined for us by many of the alumni reading this in maintaining and continuing to build the best Fraternity on University of Houston's Campus. All these accomplishments could not have been done without the dedication of the chapter and our alumni. A huge part of our success is without finances. Our past Quaestor and newly elected Consul, Brad Jamison, Spring ‘09 has been steadfast through all endeavors and his work has relieved an immeasurable amount of stress from the chapter. Many of the alumni attended Ralph Coatsworth’s Spring ’00 second annual pledge class softball fundraiser. Ralph has been very successful in organizing this event. It has been a great event for fundraising and alumni relations. Along with the softball tournament, Ralph and the other alumni big brothers have been very helpful and supportive.
Our Chapter Advisor over the past two years, Patrick Martin, Fall ’72 has upheld the most ritualistic standards of all. He has been one of the most loyal advisors, mentors, alumni and brother that this chapter could ever ask for. Words cannot express the amount of dedication this brother has for Epsilon Xi. Also, we would like to thank our Epsilon Xi Housing Corporation, Steve Smelley Fall ’76, Tom Whilite Spring ‘72, Billy Bowlin Spring ‘73, and Joe Martin Spring ’72, for allowing us to use the 5018 Calhoun property this year . The house is a great rush tool and we are anxiously awaiting a move in date.
We have been using Social Media to keep peers up to date on Sigma Chi Events. This is a link to our Facebook group “Sigma Chi 2010” Thomas Robinson Fall ‘08 led recruitment for Fall 2009. Sigma Chi still prevailed through a tough semester with a pledge class of 7 guys. Gabe Salazar Spring ’09 did an awesome job as Rush Chairman this Spring 2010. He recruited 15 guys. 30% of these men were recommended by the UH Alpha Chi Omega ladies.
Alumni have also been involved with recruitment in recommending potential new members. Tailgates, Frontier Fiesta and other functions are great places to introduce recruits to alumni. Throughout recruitment, the most common question from rushees is about alumni involvement or alumni events. Alumni funded or facilitated events like dinners at Texadelphia. LJ Guilliotte's Fall ‘06 speech at our Distinction event, and Brian Saxenian's Fall ‘04 spring event really set our chapter apart from the other fraternities on campus. These alumni funded/facilitated events also relieved financial stress that recruitment puts on the chapter. I thank all of these named alumni and others for their consistent involvement in our recruitment efforts.
Frontier Fiesta 2010:
Jason Barnes Fall ’89 was an enormous credit to our fraternity this Spring through his involvement in Frontier Fiesta. His alumni involvement yielded the best Frontier Fiesta Alumni Tailgate tent that anyone in this chapter has seen in many years. While we still have a long way to go here, this past year was an outstanding alumni tailgate setup Edgar Vasquez's Fall ’05 (Engineering Major) work on AutoCAD, Thomas Robinson's Fall ’08 (Construction Management) work at the build site and the helping hands of the active chapter built our 16 foot tall by 40 ft. wide Pirate Ship front, which was awarded Best Front. The show was filled with the most congenial, gorgeous girls. I encourage more alumni to attend our Frontier Fiesta show next Spring.
Epsilon Xi had amassed a large debt to Sigma Chi Headquarters for dues, fees and supplies during the three academic years through June 2008. In a conference call with Sigma Chi Headquarters during August 2008, (with our debt at $18,800), we agreed to pay $335/month and a balloon payment of $2,000 by May 2010. At that rate we would pay off the debt in just over two years. During our past two semesters, the debt that we inherited has dropped down to $3000 where it sits as of May 12, 2010. Our last payment is scheduled to be sent by June 1st 2010 and will pay the debt off in full. Chris Sudjadi Clarkson ’00 has been an outstanding financial mentor throughout this financial challenge.
Along with the philanthropy statistics, our UH Greek Advisor shared some other numbers with me. All men at University of Houston have a Cumulative GPA of 2.64. All Fraternity at UH have a Cumulative GPA of 2.53. Sigma Chi's Cumulative GPA is 2.74, the highest GPA of all chartered Greek fraternities. The expected average of fraternities at UH after Spring 2010 semester is 36. Membership at Sigma Chi will reach 43, a membership high for the past 10 years.
~Guard Well The Honor
Anthony DiGiovanni III
Epsilon Xi, 2010