Open Letter to the parents of Delta Chi Brothers, Pledges, and Parents
As President of the Alumni Board of Trustees (ABT) for the Alabama Chapter of Delta Chi Fraternity, I am pleased that your son is either presently a student member of our Fraternity or considering membership at this time. Our Chapter has been a part of the University of Alabama campus since 1927. In fact, we celebrated our 80th anniversary in February 2007. During these many years, Delta Chi has been a positive influence in the lives of over 1,300 young men who have become members.
The ABT is presently made up of eight mature chapter alumni, as well as the student chapter's president and treasurer. It has overall responsibility for the supervision of the Chapter. Primarily, this involves members serving as advisors to the young men in how they want to run their Chapter. Two of the many benefits of belonging to a fraternity are the opportunities to have leadership responsibility and learning how to work with others. Our Chapter has produced many distinguished leaders locally, regionally, and nationally; most of whom got their first leadership experience as members of Delta Chi.
Alabama Delta Chi alumni include such outstanding men as Jefferson J. Coleman (after whom the University's Coleman Coliseum is named), Federal Judge Robert Vance, current U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R- AL); former Alabama State Senator Rick Manley; Major General Larry Northington, USAF; former Georgia State University President Noah Langsdale; current University of Kentucky Athletic Director Larry Ivy;
State Judges Foy Guin and Mike McCormick; Dr. Jack Whetstone; legendary Tuscaloosa High School football coach Red Lutz; and too-many-to-mention successful doctors, dentists, attorneys, accountants, bankers, businessmen, ministers, and teachers at both high school and college levels.
The ABT, through our student chapter, has several goals for its men while at the University. First and foremost is the acquisition of a degree. If there is ever an issue of grades versus the Fraternity, we will support grades100%. We understand that the primary reason parents send their sons to the University is to earn a degree. Secondary objectives include the social, personal and professional growth opportunities that the University and Delta Chi offer.
Additionally, we want our young men to have opportunities for leadership both in the Fraternity and in various campus organizations. We strongly encourage Chapter student members to get involved in campus activities. Our Chapter has a proud history of having Student Government Association presidents, vice-presidents, and senators, Inter-Fraternity Council officers, and members in campus honorary organizations such as Jasons, ODK, Anderson Society, Mortar Board, and Phi Beta Kappa.
Naturally there are social opportunities associated with our Fraternity. The ABT believes they are important, as they give the men of Delta Chi opportunities to meet other students and develop new friendships. They also provide a chance to learn and practice social skills that will be necessary when college is done and he enters the real world of work and family responsibilities. We realize that potential problems can develop for a college fraternity member from this social area. Both The Delta Chi International Fraternity and The University of Alabama have formal risk management policies that provide specific rules governing alcohol and drug use on campus. The ABT stands behind the Chapter in stressing these rules to our student members. It is made clear that if there are any violations of these rules there will be serious consequences. All Delta Chi parents surely realize that it is not practical or desirable for us to follow our student members around and "mother" them. When individuals find it difficult to deal with their newfound freedom and temptations on campus, the ABT is ready to step in and help. Furthermore, should you have concerns about any issue, every ABT member is always ready to discuss it with you.
We want all men of Delta Chi to enjoy the lifelong brotherhood that comes from being a member of Delta Chi. Membership in a fraternity is not limited to the years one is in college. It is a lifelong endeavor. It is friendships that we all carry with us long after leaving the University. Each August, the ABT sponsors an annual Alabama Delta Chi Alumni Honors Dinner that gives our alumni a chance to reaffirm old friendships as well as honor our alumni who have distinguished themselves. When parents visit their sons at our Chapter House on campus, I hope they will ask him to show them the Alumni Honors Room. We believe they will be proud to have their son associated with the outstanding men pictured there!
Along with the benefits of being in a fraternity, there are, of course, responsibilities. This includes each member's financial responsibility to his chapter. A chapter is a small business and depends upon every member to contribute. House Bills include a significant amount for meals and rent for those living in the house. All members are required to participate in the meal plan. At any size, this financial obligation is imperative. From time to time there are also special assessments for such items as insurance, initiation, composites (annual group pictures), and other items voted on by the chapter.
Delta Chi's semester house bill is one of the lowest on the Alabama campus. This is due in large part to the ABT having paid off the two Chapter House mortgages and fully paying for recent house renovations. To accomplish this, our alumni members have contributed more than $250,000 since 1998. Our alumni feel strongly about their years as student members of Alabama Delta Chi and have invested in the current Chapter so your son can enjoy the same benefits, experiences and opportunities.
Parents are very important to Alabama Delta Chi. If you are a parent and haven't already done so, we hope that you will soon visit the Chapter House so you can personally meet the chapter. Again, the ABT thanks you for allowing your son to be a part of our Chapter. As we start the current semester, the ABT is very excited and pleased to have him in our midst. If you ever have any questions or comments, please call me at (205) 251-8066, or email me at BBuggelaw@aol.com. You may also contact Jim Merrell, Housing Corporation President, at (256) 650-0559 or at email@example.com.
Brian Bugge, Alabama, '98
President, Alabama Delta Chi Alumni Board of Trustees