Student Org Spotlight: Alpha Sigma Phi
The thought of paying for college can be intimidating and nerve-wracking for many students, but Alpha Sigma Phi hopes to limit financial stress for Oakland University students.
As a third year nursing major who is graduating in August, Jake Fitzpatrick, member and scholarship director of Alpha Sigma Phi, believed it would be a good idea to start a Better the Man Scholarship, geared toward males on campus.
“I always had a hard time finding the extra funding for books and access codes to class materials. I figured that by offering the money to cover the cost of something similar could possibly change the course of one’s academic success. This scholarship enables the fraternity to change someone’s life in yet another way than it had before,” Fitzpatrick said.
Fitzpatrick joined Alpha Sigma Phi in October of 2015.
“I wanted to be a part of a group that was known for making a difference,” Fitzpatrick said. “Being able to choose to be a part of a family that would support me unconditionally was exactly what I was looking for.”
“I joined because growing up I never had brothers, so through Alpha Sigma Phi, I got that. It provided me the opportunities to grow as a leader and a man,” said Alpha Sigma Phi member Brian Petty.
After an unsuccessful recruiting year in 2009 the group was revived in 2012 and the first Initiation Ceremony was conducted on April 30.
“Through Alpha Sigma Phi, I have volunteered more than I ever did prior to joining, really focused on my academics and most importantly, and cared about something greater than myself. Alpha Sigma Phi has been the best decision I ever made and provided me with a brotherhood that will always be with me for the rest of my life and not just my time in college,” Petty said.
Fitzpatrick said his favorite part of being a member of Alpha Sigma Phi is “being a part of a group of men that supports and challenges me daily to change the lives of others for the better.” Fitzpatrick anticipates on assisting OU’s Alpha Sigma Phi after graduation.
The creation of the scholarship reflects the fraternity’s five values of silence, purity, charity, honor, and patriotism as specified in the national chapter’s mission statement. At this time, the $300 scholarship is offered yearly, but Fitzpatrick said they can offer it during both fall and winter semesters in the future.
The purpose of the Better the Man Scholarship is to provide qualified undergraduate men with a chance to self-reflect on their values while earning money for books and other school-related needs.
“This not only allows students to receive some much needed funding for school, but it also enables those students with the ability to get to know a great group of guys that are always willing to make new friends and connections.”
President of Alpha Sigma Phi Tim Burns thinks highly of the new scholarship.
“I love this new scholarship because it allows people who may not be in Greek life at Oakland to see that fraternity life here at Oakland is so much more than what you see in the movies. I think people often write off Greek life because they see it as an avenue to party, but that’s so far from what we strive for.”
Burns’ hope is that Oakland students see that his fraternity’s scholarship represents that they are serious about their academic achievement and the pursuit of bettering themselves.
Applicants must meet the following criteria to be considered: be a male undergraduate student at Oakland University, have a current cumulative GPA (or high school GPA) of 2.75, attend one Alpha Sigma Phi event and enroll in a minimum of 12 credits for the winter 2017 semester.
The deadline to apply is for the Better the Man scholarship is Oct. 21, 2016.