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Introduction to Sigma Chi The Alpha Lambda Chapter of the Sigma Chi Fraternity welcomes you to a short introduction to Sigma Chi, and to the Alpha Lambda.

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Presentation on theme: "Introduction to Sigma Chi The Alpha Lambda Chapter of the Sigma Chi Fraternity welcomes you to a short introduction to Sigma Chi, and to the Alpha Lambda."— Presentation transcript:

1 Introduction to Sigma Chi The Alpha Lambda Chapter of the Sigma Chi Fraternity welcomes you to a short introduction to Sigma Chi, and to the Alpha Lambda Chapter here at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Sigma Chi was founded at Miami of Ohio in In the more than 150 years since then Sigma Chi has become the premier college fraternity in the nation. The Alpha Lambda Chapter at Wisconsin was chartered in During this time the chapter has provided another outlet for growth to compliment the rigors of the academic life in Madison. Please let us show you what we mean… Introduction to Sigma Chi By Roger Seiffe

2 History Founded in 1884, the Alpha Lambda Chapter has had a continuous presence on the Madison campus since Chester Arthur was president. In the 125 years of our existence, nearly 2,500 young men have been initiated into membership.

3 The Purpose of Sigma Chi The founding principals of Sigma Chi in 1855 were established by our founders: –Friendship, –Justice, –Learning. These have been the Great Aims of Sigma Chi since its inception. The goal of the fraternity, both at the local and national level, is to provide a framework for young men of different talents, temperaments and convictions to form lifelong friendships; develop character; and become proficient students.

4 Membership The goal of Sigma Chi is to augment the university experience; providing the means to a more well rounded undergraduate education. –The undergraduate members select their membership based on the standards maintained since the founding of Sigma Chi in –The commitment to Sigma Chi, and its undergraduate chapters, is lifelong. Sigma Chi alumni remain active in the life of the chapter long after graduation. –Sigma Chi has a long tradition of welcoming the siblings, sons, and grandsons of our brothers into membership.

5 Notable Alpha Lambda Alumni Alpha Lambda has notable alumni in all professions and all walks of life. –David Walsh, Former President and current Board Member, UW Board of Regents; UW-Madison School of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award –Jim Bakken, 1963 Rose Bowl team and NFL star –Steve Bennett, President, Intuit Corporation –Paul M. Berge, retired President, M&I Bank, Madison; UW-Madison School of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award –Irwin Smith, MBA 64; UW-Madison School of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award _Albert O. Nicholas, BS 52, MBA 55; UW-Madison School of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award; Nicholas Funds Founder and Philanthropist _Jay Smith, Former President, UW Board of Regents

6 Significant Sigs –Merlin H. Aylesworth 07 –James L. Bakken 62 –Robert F. Carney 27 –William J. Devine 52 –Robert D. Firnhaber 57 –Robert J. Kleberg, Jr. 18 –Hal C. Kuehl 47 –Albert O. Nicholas 52 –Lance R. Primis 68 –Jay L. Smith 63 –David G. Walsh 65 –Stephen M. Bennett; 1976

7 Recognition From the National Fraternity International Balfour Award Recipient –James O. Huber Only one undergraduate Sigma Chi receives this honor each year Order of Constantine: –Jim Huber –Paul Berge –Pat Bergen –Tom Ragatz –Bill Boser –Mike Fleming National recognition for their contributions to Sigma Chi Grand Praetors: –JD Thorne –Mike Fleming

8 Pledgeship The commitment to Sigma Chi is lifelong; consequently, a pledge, or probationary period is maintained. –A pledge is expected to get to know the undergraduate brothers, learn about the history, ritual, organization, and operations of the chapter. –Sigma Chi expects, and receives, a lifelong commitment that is not for everyone. This is why a pledgeship, lasting about one semester, is required. –Sigma Chis Ritual, while secret, allows for no hazing, or other unseemly conduct. –Hazing serves no purpose and has no place in Sigma Chi, or this chapter.

9 Academics The goal of fully educating young men starts with academic performance. –Membership is predicated on successful academic performance. –The Alpha Lambda Chapter grade point average exceeds the mens average. –The graduation rate of the undergraduates far exceeds the all mens average year after year –Both the local chapter and Sigma Chi support academics though chapter scholarships that are awarded each year to undergraduate members based on academic performance and financial need. Many of the brothers go on to graduate programs after graduation.

10 Scholarship Programs The Alpha Lambda Chapter has several scholarship programs endowed by alumni of the chapter. The Paul Berge Award; The Frank Thayer Award; Just this year Ab Nicholas donated a sum in excess of $100,000 to the Alpha Lambda Chapter to encourage scholarship. This fund is to be administered by the Sigma Chi Foundation for the benefit of Alpha Lambda undergraduate scholarship programs. Steve Bennett has also donated $10,000 to the chapter for the same purpose. The national fraternity also has many scholarship programs available for both undergraduate and graduate study. The chapter also provides a stipend for several of the officers and other jobs that exist in the chapter.

11 Chapter Governance Because the chapter is entrusted with a chapter house, a more formal governance structure is maintained by the alumni. –The Chapter Advisor is a local alumnus that maintains close contact with the chapter. The chapter advisors primary responsibility to insure that conduct meets the standards of Sigma Chi. The chapter advisor meets regularly with the chapter officers to insure the chapter is functioning smoothly. –The House Corporation is a board of active alumni tasked with overseeing the undergraduate chapter and its operations. –Sigma Chi has a national organization with an ongoing chapter visitation schedule. These scheduled and unannounced visits insure the ideals of Sigma Chi are maintained. –All of the alumni involved in chapter oversight, either as local chapter advisors or national fraternity employees, take chapter conduct and decorum very seriously.

12 Chapter Leadership Opportunities There are many opportunities for every brother to accept responsibilities not available to the vast majority of undergraduates. There are a myriad of tasks that require development of leadership and organizational skills. Many leadership positions, elected and appointed, exist at Alpha Lambda to insure the success of the undergraduate chapter and provide the opportunity for undergraduates to develop their leadership, communication, and their organizational skills.

13 Current Chapter Officers The current chapter officers, listed below, will be happy to answer any questions you might have. Estate Pro ConsulVice President MagisterPledge Trainer Asian Studies Rush Chairman Membership Development TribuneAlumni Relations

14 Charitable Programs The chapter is involved with several ongoing charitable programs both at the local and national level. Currently the chapter is involved with: –Habitat for Humanity - Several of the brothers spent time building a new home in Sun Prairie. –Trick or Treat with the Greeks – The house is transformed into a haunted house for 300 local underprivileged children to enjoy a Halloween treat. –Neighborhood Watch – The Madison Police Department teams with the brothers to patrol the Langdon Street area from 11:00 to 3:00 am to help insure a safe Friday night. The national fraternity also supports several charities including: Childrens Miracle Network; Special Olympics; and the Huntsman Cancer Institute.

15 Social Life In addition to the academic demands of college life, Sigma Chi has an active organized calendar of social activities: –Parents Day; –Formals; –Christmas Party; –House Corporation Meetings; –BIG TEN FOOTBALL WEEKENDS! The alumni take an active interest in the social life of the chapter to help channel youthful exuberance into constructive activities.

16 The General Fraternity Sigma Chi has a national organization that is organized to support the development and functioning of the 221 undergraduate chapters in the United States and Canada. Located in Evanston, Illinois, the national office, referred to as the general fraternity, oversees all operations of the undergraduate chapter. The general fraternity monitors the following: –Chapter Conduct - This includes all aspects of chapter life, particularly the enforcement of Sigma Chis no hazing policy; –Financial performance- The chapter is expected to remain solvent; –Leadership Development – Sigma Chi has a very active leadership development program consisting of six separate training and development seminars. The general fraternity's primary goal is to provide programs and tools to aid in the development of the character of all undergraduate brothers.

17 Chapter Conduct The national organization maintains many programs to monitor local conduct of all chapters and members. –The oversight task primarily falls to the Grand Praetor, an alumnus, who is elected to a two year term by vote of the chapters he oversees. The Praetor is required to make chapter visits and provide a written report on the conduct and condition of the five or so chapters he is responsible for overseeing. –The Praetor has broad powers to commend success, or recommend discipline, to the general fraternity on both an individual and chapter basis. –The national fraternity will not accept conduct that is contrary to the purposes of Sigma Chi by either an individual member, or a chapter as a whole. Expulsions, while fortunately rare, do occur. The national fraternity also an annual chapter visitation schedule. Each chapter is visited at least once a year by an employee of national fraternity to review all aspects of chapter operations and conduct.

18 Leadership Programs The national Sigma Chi organization maintains several formal training programs to foster leadership and the development of character. These programs are unrivaled in the Greek world. –The Balfour Leadership Training Workshop – An annual three day training session for new chapter officers. More that 1,000 undergraduates participate annually. Mentored by 150 professionally trained alumni members, this is the largest undergraduate training program in the nation. –Horizons-A week long immersion program in Utah for promising sophomores. –Cornerstone – A mentor program where a concerned alumnus makes a three year commitment to become a mentor to a chapter in his local area. The fraternity provides professional training and support to the mentor. This program has been very successful in the 40 chapters where it is currently active. More information is available at Click on the Foundation tab for the link to leadership program

19 Financial Services The The national fraternity does not own any of the property that house the undergraduate chapters. This allows the Sigma Chi to provide insurance and other services as a independent party. These services include: –Risk Management Service. The chapter house is run by the undergraduate members so Sigma Chi provides a risk management inspection of the house both for physical and liability issues. The results of these inspection are provided to the house corporation for action. Insurance for a chapter house presents some unique problems, so Sigma Chi has developed a program to provide a source of basic coverage. –There is an extensive description of this program at Click on the publications tab, then Riskwatch. –Chapter Financial Performance. Although Alpha Lambda has a very active house corporation that manages the business aspects of the Chapter, the national fraternity requires regular financial reports to prevent financial problems.

20 Chapter House The new chapter house, our fourth, is at 221 Langdon St. It is notable for several reasons. –Constructed on the site of a previous house, it was built based on an alumni fund drive. –The design is unique – providing an individual apartment setting for single and double occupancy, while maintaining a living room, library, garden and the other public areas as you would expect. –A full time cook provides complete meal service from a well appointed kitchen. –The public spaces of the chapter House provide a welcoming, home like setting for the chapter.

21 The House Corporation and LLC The financial aspects of the chapter and chapter conduct are overseen by the House Corporation Board of Directors. –The House Corporation oversees all contractual obligations undertaken by the chapter. The House Corporation is in charge of fund raising for scholarship and common area improvements. The LLC is in charge of maintaining and running the physical structure. The LLC solicited donations from the alumni to construct the new chapter house. The fund raising was sufficient to begin construction of the new chapter house, but it remains an ongoing business proposition that must be managed. This is the LLCs task. –The LLC oversees the management company engaged to manage the rental of individual apartments, insurance, mortgage and property tax payments, and general house maintenance.

22 Housing Living Arrangements The house corporation believes that the undergraduate brothers are adults; consequently, they are expected to be responsible for their living arrangements. –The physical plan of the house is split into two distinct sections: The public areas used for chapter functions with individual apartments on the upper floors. –The public area on the lower two floors contain: the living room; library; chapter room; kitchen and dinning hall. –The apartments on the upper floor are just that – individual apartments generally shared by two brothers. These apartments are leased for a calendar year. –This plan is unique to the Sigma Chi fraternity as far as we know. The design allows the chapter to subcontract the leasing and maintenance functions to a local professional management company. The brothers are expected to care for the chapter house as if it were home – it is.

23 The Benefits of a Split House The chapter house was designed as two independent sections: a public area available to brothers and guests; private apartments that can be leased to anyone. The apartment portion of the chapter house is a separate section with its own entrance. This allows the apartments to be leased to students not affiliated with Sigma Chi. This provides the chapter great flexibility in the management of the physical structure. Additionally, the requirement of a lease with a local management company builds the good habits of financial responsibility at an early age. For many of the brothers, the lease at the chapter house is the first contract they are solely responsible for honoring.

24 Individual Apartment Living The chapter house was designed to provide an individual apartment like setting for the undergraduate brothers. Although there are several designs, most apartments consists of: –A Living Room with sufficient space for a bevy of beauties; –A Kitchenette equipped with a full size refrigerator, sink, dishwasher, and electric stove. –Two Bedrooms; –Two Bathrooms; –Individual heating and cooling controls.

25 The Sprague Company The LLC has engaged The Sprague Company to manage the business and rental aspects of the chapter house. Sprague is a local Madison management company with much experience in the student housing market. Sprague provides: –A lease for each apartment; –Building and structure maintenance including emergency repair; –Trash collection and basic public area cleaning on the upper floors. Sprague does not provide: –Utilities for the individual apartments; –Content insurance –Repair for intentional abuse.

26 Contractual Obligations The contractual obligations for the apartments are very standard to the student market. Sprague manages this aspect of chapter operations. The undergraduate brothers ore expected to provide cleaning and daily maintenance for both their apartment and the public areas of the chapter house. The brothers are responsible for any damage to the house in excess of normal wear and tear. This is also true for damage to the individual apartments.The undergraduate brothers ore expected to provide cleaning and daily maintenance for both their apartment and the public areas of the chapter house. The brothers are responsible for any damage to the house in excess of normal wear and tear. This is also true for damage to the individual apartments. The lease will be provided directly by the Sprague Company. Spragues web address is They will be happy to answer any specific questions and provide you with a copy of the lease and parental guarantee.The lease will be provided directly by the Sprague Company. Spragues web address is They will be happy to answer any specific questions and provide you with a copy of the lease and parental guarantee.

27 Thank You For Visiting the The brothers of the Alpha Lambda Chapter hope that this presentation has answered some of the questions about the fraternity your son has been asked to join. Since our arrival on campus in 1884 Sigma Chi has helped many young men become good friends; valuable citizens; and educated members of society. All the members, both active and alumni, hope that your son will have the same opportunity that we have had in Sigma Chi.

28 Alpha Lambda House

29 House Living Room

30 Chapter Room for Parents Day

31 Typical Room Design Notice a distinguished alum in the chair, apparently studying!

32 Bedrooms

33 Apartment Living Room

34 Kitchenette

35 Social Activities

36 Parents Day


38 Thermopylae Defended Picture courtesy of the Capital TimesPicture courtesy of the Capital Times

39 Habitat For Humanity


41 Sweethearts

42 Future Pledges

43 Distinguished Alumni

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