Members of Phi Sigma Pi eagerly proclaimed at their rush informational meeting Tuesday night that they are not an ordinary fraternity.
As I walked into the lecture hall, I saw a lot of prospective rushees uneasy about what was to come. Many were conferring with their friends, trying to figure out exactly what GW’s honors fraternity was all about.
The group sent out letters last week to GW students who had a cumulative GPA of 3.0 and completed between 15 and 90 credit hours, inviting them to Meet Night. Tuesday was the second of two nights.
Unlike many other GW Greek-letter organizations, Phi Sigma Pi is a coed fraternity, which has about 60 current members. One member called the coed set-up one of the biggest benefits, of joining the group. Phi Sigma Pi was founded nationally in 1916 under the ideals of scholarship, leadership and fellowship, several members told the audience. GW’s chapter was founded in 1994.
Members talked about diversity making the fraternity special.
I think the biggest (benefit) is balance, said Chambliss. We celebrate everybody’s interests.
Throughout the year, the fraternity engages in social and service activities, including its national service event, the Whitman-Walker Clinic’s AIDS Walk Washington.
Rush consists of one week of activities, beginning with Game Night Thursday. On the 17th, the fraternity will hold an Invite Only Night. To be invited, said Kristin Chambliss, Initiation chair, students need to attend a certain number of rush events. Rush events consist of activities such as volleyball and an ice cream social.
Once members receive invitations to join the fraternity, there is a six-week initiation project, in which those hoping to join are paired with an older brother. Chambliss said no hazing will take place during the process, as the focus on the process is simply to educate the pledges about the organization.
Finally, the new class must take a national exam before they are brought into GW’s chapter.
Sophomore Jimmy Cannatti attended the meeting to find out more about the organization.
I like the idea of networking and knowing that you have these people here who share common goals, he said.
Originally I didn’t think that I had the time, freshman Haley Gordon said. But now I’m considering joining.
In the middle of the information session, the group presented a slide show, full of the brothers (male and female) laughing and socializing together.
I’m excited, it’s more social than I thought it would be, sophomore Moira Bohannon said.
This article appeared in the February 10, 2000 issue of the Hatchet.