This fall recruitment period turned out to be the biggest success in member recruitment in about a decade, with our chapter adding 26 new members to our brotherhood. Three were recruited prior to the start of the formal recruitment period as part of our involvement in informal recruitment, a year-round process where men may join our brotherhood through engagement opportunities with the chapter, with twenty-three members being recruited through the
Interfraternity Council at Virginia Tech’s formal recruitment period, which lasted from September 7th to September 20th.
Formal recruitment is a time where every university-recognized fraternity hosts a variety of different “rush” events to get potential new members to become familiarized with their respective brotherhoods. For our chapter, we held four different recruitment events. The first was a cookout grilling event at our Center Street tailgate spot, where those in attendance were able to enjoy hamburgers and hot dogs while playing games such as cornhole and volleyball, all while having the opportunity to talk to members of our chapter. Other events included a bonfire with the brothers, as well as a casino night, where members and potential new members came dressed up in formal attire to play card games such as Blackjack and Poker. Interviews were later held to get to know the potential new members better, and soon after bids were handed out.
To put things into perspective, this is the largest recruitment class of new members our chapter has seen before the charter was initially revoked back in 2013. We are currently at 72 active members in the Virginia Kappa chapter, and we intend to grow our membership through various informal recruitment events as well as the Balanced Man Scholarship banquet we will be having on October 10th. Our goal is to reach a minimum of 30 new members by the conclusion of this semester, and we strongly believe that we have the momentum to do so.
As for chapter activities, much of the brotherhood has been kept busy by our various chapter related involvements and roles.
The haunted house philanthropy week collaborative event between our chapter and the Theta Xi chapter of Sigma Nu has been making progress as we get closer to Halloween. Currently, those involved in the planning process are working towards getting the materials necessary to make the event a success. Thrift shop runs and FaceBook MarketPlace efforts are soon to be taking place, as costumes and decor are needed to ensure that everything is available for “Nightmare on Progress St” is as scary and well-crafted as possible. Currently, seven sororities at Virginia Tech have committed to having their respective chapters participate in the philanthropy week, where we will be fundraising daily to help support Feeding America and Flex Out Hunger, both of which work to help fight food insecurity in the United States.
In addition to our philanthropy week, our chapter has signed on to participate in the Eta Epsilon chapter of Gamma Phi Beta’s Girls philanthropy week, where we will be competing against various fraternities & sororities here at Virginia Tech to help fundraise for Girls on the Run, a national non-profit organization that, “strengthens third to eighth-grade girls’ social, emotional, physical, and behavioral skills to successfully navigate life experiences.” In a way, Gamma Phi Beta (or G Phi as we tend to call it) is a sister sorority to our chapter, one in which we have two social events planned this semester, and we are always enthusiastic about supporting their philanthropic efforts whenever possible. We took first place in winning their philanthropy week this past Spring, and we have no intention of taking any other place this Fall.
On Sunday, September 19th, our chapter was fortunate to have the opportunity to collaborate with Sam’s Hot Dog Stand, a local hot dog-oriented eatery located near downtown Blacksburg, to fundraise for Flex Out Hunger. The store allowed our members to essentially run the store for hours at a time, with members making chili dogs in the kitchen, taking orders at the registers, among other activities to complete sales. One of the more popular activities of that day was putting on a hotdog or condiment costume to wear outside of the shop and encourage those who walked by to stop in and support our cause. It was a great, fun-filled time for the brotherhood all while benefiting our philanthropy.
Beyond philanthropy-related endeavors, we have been busy with social activities, all centered around building our brotherhood in a constructive manner. The first weekend of October was Fall Break for Virginia Tech, so our brotherhood decided to make the best of the opportunity for time off to go camping. A group of ~30 brothers ventured out to Elkton, Virginia to camp out for two nights on land owned by the family of brother Courts Breeden ‘23. As for athletic activities, our brothers have been involved in a number of VT Rec Sports-led intramural sports such as basketball and soccer, sporting our chapters’ custom SigEp jerseys.