Sigma Chi - University of Nebraska

Winter 2017 Newsletter

Alpha Epsilon Chapter of Sigma Chi Fraternity at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln

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Page 2 in the next Husker Sig and via separate e-mail to alumni members. All in all, this looks to be an ambitious and fun 2017 for Nebraska Sig alumni in the Lincoln, Omaha, and surrounding areas. Additionally, the GNAAC is in sound financial health. Our bank balance of $15,089 can be attributed to a successful collection period for annual dues and the inclusion of dues requests directly in our newsletter. Your dues support alumni activity throughout the year and the publication of The Husker Sig! In Hoc, Curt "Woody" Denker '77 President Greater Nebraska Area Alumni Chapter Greater Nebraska Area Alumni Chapter Update (Continued from page 1) FROM THE DESK OF THE CHAPTER ADVISOR G reetings, Brothers! I'm excited to provide an overview of the highlights for our undergraduate Chapter as we head into a new year and the spring semester at 1510 Vine Street. My overarching observation is quite positive. Our Alumni Advisory Committee is deliberately—and with confidence— slightly loosening our management grip on the affairs of the undergraduate Chapter. The reason why is simple. Our undergraduates have consistently proven themselves to be ready to own who they are, what they are called to do in the best of Sigma Chi values, and what they want their reputation to be on campus and in the community. We have our culture "right" and it is gratifying to witness and to give these guys the well-earned opportunity to move to more self-governance. Here are a few key points that I wanted to share. We are up to 76 members. We are vetting possible new members quite rigorously and selecting quality young men with the right values—and the results are showing. One fine example of this is that 28 out of 31 members of our last pledge class were recently initiated. We have strong team continuity. While we are losing Chapter Advisory Member Brad Staskiewicz '10 as he relocates to Minneapolis, I am continuing my role in leading the Advisory Committee. Al Cooper, our house dad, has proven to be a valuable asset—admired and respected by the undergraduates. Al is moving into his second year with us and, given his path to earning his Ph.D., will likely be with us for several more. Stacey, our all-purpose cook/house mom/relational glue is now in her fourth year (a modern record for us!) and revered by all, not just for her great cooking, but her care as well. I want to personally thank Brad for his tireless, insightful, and valuable work with our undergraduates over the years. He has been nothing short of superb and we wish him well as he embarks on this next chapter of his life. Our renovation has proved truly worthy. We have a great physical plant and have learned how to improve some things during this "shakedown" period. For example, we converted, at the request of the undergraduates, the old study room into a "brotherhood" room with more seating, television, and sound system. We then converted the quieter downstairs area to be the primary study area complete with improved Wi-Fi capacity. We are building Sigs for Life. I am highly optimistic that the clear shift in culture has created the kind of "stickiness" in terms of lifetime commitment to Sigma Chi. Our culture has shifted in a positive, values-driven way, that stresses personal accountability and care for one another. It is great to witness! This bodes well not only for the undergraduate Chapter today, but for the future leadership of the Advisory Group as I am confident we will transition a number of our graduates to serving in advisory capacities following graduation. We are growing stronger financially. We are in the process of converting our current line of credit into a long-term amortized loan, which will systematically reduce our debt obligations and free up cash flow. We are getting close to full occupancy status as well and our plan is to sustain those levels year in and year out, which also bodes well for debt reduction. All in all, I think Alpha Epsilon has come a long way in the last five years, and we will continue on a path of success. In Hoc, Trey Pittenger '01 Chapter Advisor AlphA Epsilon ContinuEs upwArd trAjECtory L ooking back over the last four years since Sigma Chi was reinstated, it is gratifying to see the arc of our growth. At the time of the reinstatement, we had pared down to "a few good men" who were determined to do three things well. First, to live out the Sigma Chi values fully. Second, we were determined to build a culture that would turn out true leaders. And, finally, we wanted to grow in numbers and influence, without ever compromising values or the desire to build leaders. We owe a great deal to the handful of Sigs who, with determination and optimism, planted the seeds for the "right kind of growth" five years ago. Led by Consul Alex Moore '15 and seven other brothers at the time, we have now grown our membership numbers to 76. We dare say that no other fraternity house on campus has grown more in terms of numbers during this period of time. The Alpha Epsilon Chapter is growing, for sure. But it is growing based on solid, foundational principles set by the National Fraternity. Paradoxically, it is also growing because we have chosen to focus only on engaging quality young men who have the potential to become leaders and to attract other leaders. The idea is that quality begets quality and that, together, a culture of accountability, success, and leadership is built. We, as a Chapter, owe what we have today to what the men in 2012 did in keeping the house running and on campus. Many people at that time would have chosen to join another house instead of Sigma Chi, but those few guys believed in the house and chose to light the path for the brothers to come. A telling outcome to their faithfulness and vision is that every man in the Chapter House proudly wears letters around campus and consistently strives to better the house day by day. Any member in the Chapter House would tell you how proud they are about how far the house has come, and they will also say Sigma Chi will only continue to grow, and get better. In Hoc, John Schmitt '19 Alpha Epsilon brothers gather in the living room for a Secret Santa gift exchange prior to the holiday break.

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