My name is Brice Loop, I’m a 19 year old Mechanical Engineering student at Indiana Tech and I joined the Indiana-Eta chapter of SigEp nearly one year ago. I’ll be writing about some of the experiences I’ve had in the chapter since then, and about some of our typical brotherly activities around campus and around town.
One of our premiere brother bonding events is the lock-in. Usually scheduled once a semester, it involves as many brothers as possible descending on the chapter house and enjoying video games, hide-and-seek, karaoke, and as much of each other’s company as we can stomach. Everybody is highly encouraged to stay the night, and we often kick off our activities with a meaningful conversation about what it means to be a brother in this organization. The last lock-in I was at, my friend David and I began a play-through of Halo 3 on Legendary difficulty, and he both surprised and educated me with his immense knowledge of that game.
Near the holiday season, even more programming takes place for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Both events involve good food and alumni showing up to a warm welcome from the active chapter, but Christmas is special because it’s when official fraternity nicknames are given out. Every brother’s second Christmas, their big brother chooses them a name that will be with them forever, emblazoned on a mug fit for a king. My second Christmas is approaching soon, and I’m hoping my nickname is a good one.
Even in such a hectic time of year, community service remains an important part of our fraternity’s culture. Trick-or-Treating for canned goods takes place on Halloween night, where brothers fan out from campus and walk the routes normally reserved for those under 12, asking door to door for charitable donations to a food drive. Any non perishable food is accepted and appreciated, but cans of food are prized, and we take pride in the volume of goods we’ve brought in in years past. Besides being charitable, it’s plenty of fun to be childish on Halloween, and we often walk around town in costume to get the authentic October 31st experience. This year I’ll be going as a skeleton, and I’m very excited.
Another place to find brothers helping others is at charity auctions. Every few months we get a phone call from a gentleman named Mogan David, who organizes fundraisers for a grab bag of different organizations. Mr. David’s weapon of choice is the auction, and we most commonly work with him when he organizes them for Mustard Seed, a furniture bank that provides bed frames and bedding to children in need. The nights are always a good time with a personality like Mogan David in charge, and while we volunteer for the events, we are often compensated with excellent food. At the time of writing, one such auction is tonight, and I have cleared my schedule for it.
Coming into my sophomore year of college, I never imagined that my life would have gone this way. A friend or two had joined the fraternity in their freshman year, but I mainly stayed in my room. Since joining, the connections I’ve made and the experiences I’ve had have been more than worth it.