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“A fraternity returns: DTD gains college approval” by Ian Morse appeared on The Lafayette’s website last Friday. The article announces that the 18 member Recognition Committee decided to grant Delta Tau Delta (DTD) colony status.

President of DTD Dan Lupia ’16 (Full disclosure: Lupia copyedits for us. He did not copyedit this story) said the 26 members of DTD are excited about the decision. A ceremony to recognize them as a colony will be held at a nearby DTD chapter within about three weeks, according to Lupia.

“We’re just really happy to have finally made a step at Lafayette College moving in the pro-Greek life direction and bringing something back to the school,” he said.

DTD has a strong group of alumni who have always been inclusive and welcoming at their tailgates and golf outings. They’ve fostered connections with the Delta Delta Delta women occupying the former DTD house, including co-hosting events with the chapter.

DKE wishes DTD well. We want every fraternity and sorority chapter to succeed at Lafayette College to enrich the student experience. Moving forward, DTD will operate with the support of their national and local alumni as a colony for 2-4 semesters.

DTD and Chi Phi had both applied to the Recognition Committee; however, the process limits expansion to one chapter per year within a given type of group (social, service, or culturally based organizations). Word is Chi Phi received feedback on their application and is encouraged to reapply next year with a stronger application.

Hopefully they do reapply.

For those interested in keeping track, there are three active fraternity chapters on campus (DKE, DU, and Phi Psi), one colony (DTD), one suspended fraternity chapter (Zeta Psi, 11/25/2018).  Chi Phi is the only social fraternity that has students actively seeking recognition. There are also students interested in service oriented groups such as Alpha Phi Omega (the world’s largest service fraternity, which was founded at Lafayette), as well as culturally based chapters, none of which would conflict with or compete with Chi Phi’s reapplication.

 

As Delta Kappa Epsilon turns 171 years old today, the Rho Chapter has additional cause to celebrate. On Friday, the College released their academic performance report for the 2015 spring semester.

We are pleased to announce that our undergraduates attained an average chapter GPA of 3.36 compared to the All Upper-Class, Non-Affiliated Men’s Average of 3.21. This marks the fourth consecutive semester over semester increase in GPA by our student brothers. They’re also within striking distance (0.01) of toppling Phi Kappa Psi (the statisticians would say we’ve already matched them)!

There were also several outstanding individual accomplishments, which will be recognized in the next Rho News including multiple men with a 4.0 GPA for the semester and over 25% of the chapter making the Dean’s List!

Academic performance, and specifically GPA, has been a focus area for our undergraduates for the past several years. Congratulations for this accomplishment!

 

We are happy to announce that we placed second in the Lion Trophy Competition from DKE International.

An application based process, the award is the highest honor given to the chapter with best overall performance from the previous year. Rho came in second place overall behind the Alpha Phi chapter from the University of Toronto.

Brothers Rob Pollastro ’16 and Henry Boozan ’16 accepted the prestigious award at the 2014 DKE convention at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky. The announcement was made following a banquet held at the Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs. Former astronaut Brother Alan Bean was on hand as the keynote speaker at the event.

Broken up into four sections, Chapter Operations, Philanthropy and Service, Scholarship, and Leadership, individual awards are also given to the chapters who shined in those areas. As well as winning first runner-up overall, Rho won third place for the individual Chapter Operations section.

The brothers of Rho are extremely proud to accept this award and look forward to continuing the tradition of excellence at Lafayette College and in DKE International.

 

My big fat Greek renovation: DKE fraternity house undergoes major renovations” by Ian Morse ‘17 appears in this week’s edition of The Lafayette. The topic is the planned renovation of the DKE House, which is one part of the plans to commemorate DKE’s 160th Anniversary at Lafayette College along with endowing a scholarship and faculty award.

This project reflects the significant commitment of Lafayette College to DKE, and vice versa. Together we are breathing new life into one of the most effective living learning laboratories on Lafayette’s campus – the DKE House.

“The interior of the 1st thru [sic] 3rd floors will be completely demolished and replaced with all new construction, including finishes, mechanical, electrical, fire protection and plumbing fixtures,” Director of Facilities Planning and Construction Mary Wilford-Hunt wrote in an email.

Renovations will cost over $4 million, according to Wilford-Hunt. The college will pay the base cost of the entire renovation and trust that DKE contribution quotas will be filled, according the Rho DKE 160th Anniversary Campaign’s website.

DKE could not ask for better partners at the College. We’ve worked with all levels of the administration, members of the faculty, trustees, and of course our students. The outpouring of support from folks at the College as well as the brothers, families, and friends of DKE has been tremendous.

In addition to covering the thoughts of Rho Deke alumni, the article also highlights our collegian brothers’ perspective:

“We’ve been working with our alumni advisor and the other alumni, as well as with the undergraduates to help raise money…to fund the project as best as possible,” DKE President Brett Lederer ’15 said. Members of the fraternity have held “phone-athons” whereby they inform alumni since the Class of 1960 of the chapter’s plans.

The administration is presenting this project to the Board of Trustees for their review and approval at the upcoming meeting (May 23-24). Pending that approval, we will host a ground breaking ceremony at the DKE House on June 7th at 2PM with President Byerly. This is during reunion, so register today!

Please post any questions or comments.

 

The IAGGL Draft Report is out! Let’s cut to the chase. The Board of Trustees called for demonstrated progress towards four objectives for fraternities and sororities. How did we do?

  • IAGGL assessed fraternities and sororities achieved the objectives for academics and discipline.
  • IAGGL found fraternities and sororities met the objectives for demonstrated learning opportunities and benefits to the College as a whole as measured through existing residence life programs.
  • IAGGL found fraternities and sororities demonstrated progress at improving transparency and communication in recruitment including practiced non-discrimination policies. IAGGL concluded open access such as a lottery for membership is not a realistic expectation of values based groups such as fraternities and sororities that select membership according to their groups’ values.

The chair of the Implementation and Assessment Group on Greek Life (IAGGL) posted the draft report today for the entire Lafayette community to review and comment:

To facilitate community feedback, two open forums will be held to discuss the draft and to answer questions regarding the data or recommendations:

  • Monday, April 21, 7:30 p.m. in Colton Chapel – students
  • Tuesday April 22, 4:15 p.m. in Hugel 103 – faculty, staff, and other interested members of the community

You should read the full announcement.

The IAGGL draft report makes several recommendations. Here is my personal take for DKE, which applies to my perspective on fraternities and sororities as a whole:

  • Revamped accreditation program is good. Accreditation itself is not new; only the multimedia format is new, which should help students showcase the benefits of fraternity and sorority affiliation. I look forward to working with the College to strengthen the accreditation program. We can, should and must be held accountable to our shared values with the College. The College already knows from STEPS and COMPASS that accreditation programs successfully predict struggling chapters. It is good to see a recommendation to use an accreditation program to justify expansion as well.
  • Tracking men’s recruitment via ICS solves an issue DKE has pushed for over the past several years. This scalable process will help cut through red tape that Scott Harris ’95 and Dr. Asela Gunawardana ’95 have been fighting to obtain accurate academic profiles of potential new members BEFORE the start of the fall semester (this is difficult due to FERPA requirements protecting privacy of students). Implementing this change will also help rising sophomores, juniors and seniors express interest in joining any fraternity. An additional on-ramp into the fraternal experience is helpful.
  • Waiting on expansion is right, but also wrong. It is right because there are no applications for recognition available to be acted upon due to the moratorium. Any decisions the College makes regarding expansion should take into account the existing community of recognized fraternities and sororities as well as the direction of the College, as the draft report suggests. However, the recommendation as written is wrong because it stops short of recommending the lifting of the temporary moratorium on recognition of new chapters, which was supposed to be in place until IAGGL’s conclusion. The moratorium should be lifted immediately with the conclusion of IAGGL so that groups may begin preparing their applications with the knowledge gained through the IAGGL process. No applications for recognition should be acted upon without considering the critical issues of 1) Context of the application with currently recognized chapters and 2) Fit with the overall direction of the College, including sustained demand among students for new chapters.

DKE believes there is significant demand among students today to join fraternities beyond the capacity of the four currently recognized fraternities (DKE, DU, Phi Kappa Psi and Zeta Psi). We want additional chapters, but we only want successful chapters.

The Lafayette covers the IAGGL draft in an article today “Back to Square One: IAGGL report draft provides no clear answers regarding Greek Life’s future” by Michael A. Kowaleski ‘14:

President Alison Byerly, who inherited the program from Weiss, said that there is no timetable for a final ruling.

“I expect the administration and the Board will respond formally to the report, saying ‘thank you’ for the report, we anticipate doing X, Y and Z,’” she said. “When that would happen, I don’t know.”

There are still two open forums that will be conducted before a final report is filed to the Board of Trustees in May.

In the meantime, it would appear that those in the Lafayette community looking for a conclusion to the “Greek discussion” will have to wait for the Board of Trustees to decide the future of Greek life on campus. IAGGL didn’t provide a smoking gun condemning Greeks, but there was no ringing endorsement.

The article also reports on student reactions.

The Alumni Interfraternity Sorority Board (AISB) had a productive conversation with Dr. Annette Diorio, VP of Campus Life and Senior Diversity Officer (and IAGGL Chair) after receiving the draft report. We are also actively engaged with the Alumni Association and the relevant committees on the Board of Trustees.

You can always provide me input at president@rhodke.org, by leaving a comment below, or contacting your chapter’s AISB representative.

As Annette pointed out in her announcement, there is a tremendous amount of common ground among all stakeholders at Lafayette College, including students and alumni in fraternities and sororities. We will continue to lay out a vision of how fraternities and sororities can help fuel the College’s success if we build on that common ground, and highlight immediate steps the College can take towards that vision.

 

Lafayette College’s VP of Campus Life Annette Diorio posted an update from the Implementation and Assessment Group on Greek Life (IAGGL). Read the full update here.

Highlights include:

  • President Byerly’s participation at the Jan 24 meeting
  • A document for the President and Board of Trustees to be delivered in March
  • Fall grade report demonstrates strong academic performance by Greek students
  • Lower rate of conduct violations by Greeks than percentage of Greeks in the overall student population
  • An accreditation program (e.g., successor to STEPS and COMPASS) that recognizes high achievement by fraternities and sororities in the areas of Scholarship, Leadership, Service & Philanthropy, Chapter Development, and Administrative Duties
  • A review of membership statistics

Want to know more? Read the full post.

Overall, it looks as though fraternities and sororities have met the objectives set forth by the Board of Trustees:

  • Fraternities and sororities must provide open access and engagement opportunities to all students at Lafayette (non-discriminatory in selection of members).
  • Fraternities and sororities must facilitate demonstrated learning opportunities for students and provide benefits to the College as a whole.
  • The academic performance of students affiliated with fraternities and sororities must be comparable to the student body as a whole.
  • The disciplinary profile of members of fraternities and sororities, as well as the individual organizations, must be comparable to the student body as a whole and other student organizations.
 

On November 22, 2014, Lafayette vs. Lehigh (a.k.a. The Rivalry) will be played at Yankees Stadium in honor of the 150th meeting of our football teams. DKE already purchased a block of tickets in Section 219. The block of club seats ($89 each including all taxes, fees, etc.) are near the end zone and have access to the Delta Sky 360 Suite (which will have heat, clean bathrooms, a bar, and big screen TVs).

Yankees Stadium Seating Chart for Lafayette vs. Lehigh

Yankees Stadium Seating Chart for Lafayette vs. Lehigh

If you are interested in a seat in the DKE block with access to the Delta Sky 360 Suite, please respond to Dan Huffenus ’86 at dan.huffenus@kattenlaw.com by November 15th. You can checkout the view from the seats at http://yankees.io-media.com/# by searching for Section 219 under Virtual Venue.

We’re also looking at hosting a cocktail reception at the DKE Club in NYC for Friday night in addition to tailgating and other Rivalry Weekend Events. Stay tuned….

 

On October 4 Lafayette College inaugurated Alison R. Byerly as the 17th President of Lafayette College. If you missed the experience, you can catch up on everything about the inauguration here.

Generations of Rho Dekes returned to campus throughout weekend. Our best count of the alumni back on campus is below the fold. If you have a story or thought from Homecoming, share it here. For those who attended inauguration and appreciated the music, Brother Pete Taggart ’15 was among the students playing at the reception. Brother Taggart is one of the twenty seven students who are part of the College’s Creative and Performing Arts (CaPA) Fellowship program, which was created through the generosity of Bruce ’65 and Jackie P’02 Maggin.

Brother Pete Taggart '15 playing at the inauguration of President Byerly

Brother Pete Taggart ’15 playing at the inauguration of President Byerly

On the morning of October 5 during the Alumni Interfraternity Sorority Board (AISB) meeting, Brother De Lisi was elected to lead AISB as President alongside Vice President Susan Kowalenko ’86 from Pi Beta Phi.

The Rho House Association hosted our annual meeting at the DKE House on Saturday. Attached are the slides in PDF or PPTX format with speaker’s notes. For more information, please contact president@rhodke.org.

Following a successful tailgate and victory over the Bucknell Bison, DKE undergraduates hosted Oktoberfest opening up the bars in the DKE house for the first time. The College supported this party, demonstrating that it is in fact possible to host receptions in fraternity houses with the blessing of the College.

Click to see the Rho Deke alumni around campus for Homecoming.

Continue reading »

 

Register for Homecoming 2013 today! In addition to the College’s schedule of events, DKE has a full schedule of events for our alumni, students, and friends. Come enjoy a great day on campus with fellow brothers on Oct 5th.

Friday October 4
5PM – 7PM Marquis Reception @ DKE House
Immediately following President Byerly’s inauguration convocation (4PM @ Quad) and prior to the Marquis Founders Dinner (College invitation only), our students welcome all Rho Dekes to the DKE House to enjoy our brotherhood and talk about what we have in the works for the 160th Anniversary of the Rho Chapter. Semi-formal attire suggested. The College also plans to host an open reception on the quad.

Saturday October 5
8AM – 11AM Breakfast (DKE Dining Room)
Join us for a delicious DKE breakfast served by the one and only Walter Luby including his famous egg McWalts and egg McLubies (Continental breakfast starts at 8AM, hot food served at 10AM).

11AM – 12:30PM Annual Meeting
We’ve made terrific strides to strengthen both the Rho Chapter and the Rho House Association. We also have ambitious plans for our chapter’s 160th Anniversary coming up in 2015. You’ll hear all about those plans at the annual meeting of the Rho House Association. Come get the latest alumni news, meet our students, hear about their strategic plan, and receive updates about our beloved Rho Chapter. Bring any ideas, questions or concerns to our chapter’s leadership.

12:30PM – 3:30PM Tailgate (Markle Parking Deck)
For the second consecutive year, our traditional tailgate will be on Markle to mingle with the Trustees and other alumni. We are already registered as a group, but space will be proportional to the number of Dekes registered with the Office of Alumni Relations. So register today and help us DOMINATE THE DECK (as only gentlemen can of course)! You do not have to select a specific tailgate package, but be sure to click the radio button for “Delta Kappa Epsilon with Michael De Lisi ’03” under the heading for “Joining your Affinity Group?” If you want food & drinks from the alumni association’s tailgate, you’ll need to check the boxes for their package as well.

Like last year, the undergrads will again be manning their grill on the parking deck. Bring anything else you’d like to contribute. Note: the College moved student tailgates from March Field to Anderson Courtyard in front of Watson Hall, and AHE/ACE.

3:30PM – 6:30PM Lafayette v Bucknell Football Game
DKE shows up in force for the football game. If you register for the College’s Tailgate & Game Package, your tickets are included in that cost. If not, you can buy tickets directly from the goleopards website.

View from the DKE Section

Fisher Field

6:30PM – 10:30PM Oktoberfest: Homecoming @ DKE!
What you’ve been waiting for… Help your brothers keep up a time honored tradition: main bar room parties in the DKE House. Last year we re-christened the bar room. This year we are inviting all Rho Dekes and our families back to the DKE House immediately following the game for Oktoberfest. We’ll be serving appetizers followed by a buffet dinner Oktoberfest style – prepared by our very own Walter Luby! Return the tradition of bringing a case of your favorite beer back to the DKE House to share with your brothers (yes, please do BYOB).

Our undergrads are still putting the finishing touches on big plans for the return of Oktoberfest. Like most DKE events, you don’t want to miss this!

So come back to the DKE House to unwind and hopefully celebrate the thumping we just delivered to the Bison with your fellow Dekes.

Please be sure to register for Homecoming 2013, and under “Tailgating with Affinity Group” click the box for Delta Kappa Epsilon, Michael De Lisi ’03. If you want to nosh the College’s tailgate make sure to register for that too, but be sure to also the click box for DKE under “Joining your Affinity Group? ” If you don’t want the College’s tailgate, simply enter the number of people in your party under “On Campus Only.”

See you at the DKE House in a few short weeks!

To make a donation towards the cost of these events (like third party security, food, etc.), please either use our paypal feature to send an electronic donation or mail a check payable to the Rho House Association to:

Rho House Association
c/o Peter Carlson, Treasurer
3026 Wayne Road
Falls Church, VA 22042

Gentlemen, we cannot stress enough the importance of this opportunity to celebrate DKE as a vital, positive contributor to a vibrant campus life; and you and your family get to have a great time. So register today, and we look forward to welcoming you back to the DKE  House!

Spread the word and get ready to Let the Lion Roar!

 

Jared Piette ’12 put together a fantastic edition of the Rho News covering the latest for DKE and past highlights from 1917 and 1954. The online edition is available here. You can view all electronic editions of the Rho News in our archive.

By now all Rho Deke alumni should have received the Summer 2013 edition by both mail and e-mail; we distributed it via Lafayette College’s mailing system. If you did not receive a copy, please update your contact information online or contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 1-(800)-LAFAYETTE or alumni@lafayette.edu.

Send questions or comments to rhonews@rhodke.org.

 
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