Alums Get Front Row Seat to Rush Event
Often we think that the only way alumni participate in Delta Delta’s rush program is by submitting “rush recommendations” for young men attending Purdue. But what has increasingly become the top drawing recruitment activity for Delta Delta is the annual Alumni Rush Event. At this gathering of 150 plus rushees and brothers, coordinated by Delta Delta Recruitment Chairmen C.J. Johnson, Jake Davis and Spencer Meredith, a select group of alumni take center stage and talk about their Sigma Chi experience to the young men in attendance.
Alumni Speak from Experience, Heart
This year’s slate of alumni participants included Greg Burns ’15, Brandon Cortez ’11, Jay Andrew ’98, Dave Omholt ’92 and Bernie Sergesketter ’58. Each of these brothers took their turn to address the audience and shared their unique perspectives on how Sigma Chi had impacted their lives. All of them reflected on the close friendships they had established and how being a Sigma Chi was a lifelong commitment.
Lessons from Sigs 23 to 80 Years Young
Our younger alumni, Greg Burns ‘15 and Brandon Cortez ‘11, both remarked how being a Sigma Chi had already led to career opportunities for each of them, and how much they enjoyed being part of their pledge brothers lives through weddings, job changes and seeing each other when they traveled.
Chapter Advisor Jay Andrew ‘98 emphasized the need to find a fraternity that emphasized “balance” and the importance of academics, campus and community involvement, being engaged with your chapter, and, yes, even having some fun along the way.
Dave Omholt ’92 had a unique perspective addressing the crowd from his den in Dallas, Texas, using Delta Delta’s new video conferencing equipment. Dave spoke about his days at Delta Delta where he served as Rush Chairman, Consul and was the captain of the Purdue baseball team.
Bernie Sergesketter ’58 started by asking, “How many of you have ever spoken to someone who is 80 years old?” Bernie noted that this was the first time he had taken part in this event and he was interested in hearing what he was going to say as well. Bernie went on to talk about the commitment of so many brothers during the renovation campaign, and the chapter’s emphasis on leadership, scholarship and brotherhood. His final remarks spoke about how important “retaining the spirit of youth” had been throughout his life.
Mingling with Alumni Brothers
Following the alumni’s remarks, the rushees had an opportunity to talk one on one with these alumni speakers and other alumni who were in attendance. When the guests were asked, “What did you think of the alum’s comments?” several remarked that the stories of how important Sigma Chi was after graduation gave them a perspective they had not considered.
With today’s fraternity recruitment lasting only 2 ½ weeks, it is a challenge to get to know the large number of freshmen going through rush. This event allows those thinking about joining a fraternity the opportunity to learn firsthand what makes Sigma Chi so different. For those in the audience who receive bids, hearing an alumnus’ perspective may be just what it takes to inspire them to be future leaders at Delta Delta.