Beta Theta Pi - Kansas State University

Fall 2020 Newsletter

Gamma Epsilon Chapter of Beta Theta Pi Fraternity at Kansas State University

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BeTa TheTa pi 2 A s a collegiate athlete, Ralph McFillen '64 did not want to be just another "jock" and made academics an equal priority. Beta Theta Pi helped him achieve his goal, and he took pride in maintaining a GPA that was never less than the chapter average. By joining Gamma Epsilon, Ralph surrounded himself with high-quality young men. "There was an excellent mixture of academic, athletic, and musical talents throughout the fraternity." Ralph went on to have a successful collegiate football career at K-State, leading the Big 8 Conference in pass receptions his senior year. He was named All-Conference and Honorable Mention All-American and was selected to play in the Senior Bowl. As a graduate, he worked as an assistant coach for the freshman football team before teaching and coaching high school football for several years. In 1970, Ralph's pledge father, Warren Brown '62, hired him to work at the NCAA, leading to a 30-year career in intercollegiate athletics. He spent the later half of his career serving as commissioner of the Gulf South, Metro, and MIAA conferences, retiring in 2007. Overall, Ralph is pleased and optimistic about how high school, collegiate, and professional athletics have handled the COVID-19 pandemic. "As a team has to adjust to its opponent throughout the game, our nation is doing so with this disease—shutting down when needed and opening parts back up as the infection rate diminishes." He is glad to see that athletics of all levels have been able to return in many cases. Ralph has fond memories of Beta being the top KSU fraternity during his college years. Between Interfraternity Sing, Chariot Relays, intramurals, and social functions, the brotherhood made his K-State life productive and enjoyable. He still keeps in touch with all of his pledge brothers and others, and his class is planning a 60th reunion next year—currently set for next September in Manhattan. His best advice to undergraduate brothers comes from his parents, who supported his various activities and always encouraged him to enjoy the moment. "Whatever stage of life you are experiencing, take the time to appreciate it, knowing you will move on to another." Ralph and his wife of over 50 years, Pat, live in Suwanee, Georgia, near one of their two daughters. They enjoy spending time with their daughters and grandchildren, and Ralph tries to maintain a healthy lifestyle through activities such as jogging and tennis. He can be reached at PUTTING IN MAXIMUM EFFORT What K-State Athlete Ralph McFillen '64 Learned from Beta Ralph McFillen '64 holds his 2016 Beta Man of the Year award, received from the Kansas City Beta Theta Pi Alumni Association. BROTHERHOOD AT A DISTANCE Active Members Taking COVID-19 Precautions Seriously B rothers, This fall semester has presented challenges for 500 Sunset unlike any we have experienced before. With COVID-19 cases growing, we have taken all the precautions possible to keep Gamma Epsilon Chapter as safe as possible for our members. We require that all members wear masks in the hallways and when they are on the first floor or in the chapter room. Additionally, we started instituting grab-and-go meals to keep the number of members in one area as low as possible. Although these precautions are seemingly keeping members away from one another, 500 Sunset has continued to maintain the same amount of brotherhood that we would any other year. Currently, intramurals have not been scheduled and do not seem to be starting in the foreseeable future. Last spring, we continued our intramural dominance with a first-place overall victory in the fraternity league. We hope that cases in Manhattan begin to decrease so we can continue this historical brotherhood event. Gamma Epsilon was able to bring in 27 pledges this fall semester. Our recruitment chairmen, Carter Black '22 and Casey Lanoue '22, did a tremendous job bringing in some high-quality young men. Brothers are doing their absolute best to keep each other as safe as possible during this pandemic. We will continue wearing masks, utilizing sanitation stations, and following social distancing protocols. This will ensure we are able to maintain the brotherhood for the remainder of the pandemic. Fraternally, Josh Spradlin '22 Chapter President

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