For the past several months, Phi Eta Psi Sorority has been transitioning from its current status as a local Greek organization to a chapter of the national organization Alpha Sigma Tau.
According to Coordinator of Greek Affairs and Off-Campus Living Wendi Kinney, the transition process began in spring 2011 when the women of Phi Eta Psi – also known as Pheta – approached her about the possibility of affiliating with a national organization. Following this discussion, members of Pheta chose to pursue this option.
“We contacted different national organizations to see which one would be willing to adopt a local organization,” Pheta Recruitment Chair and Webmaster, senior Jenny Boyer said. “We got to meet with several organizations that thought we may be a good fit, and we were able to learn about each of them in order to see which one we felt most comfortable with.”
“We even had some of the founding mothers come down to make sure that what we were doing was a good fit,” she said.
After this process, the women and founding mothers of Pheta decided to affiliate with Alpha Sigma Tau.
“Though some alumni and current members were initially surprised at first, I think we all agreed that it was the best step forward for our organization,” Boyer said.
“Alpha Sigma Tau offers the sisters more in terms of networking,” senior and Pheta President Hayley Lloyd said. “I also think that people are more attracted to national sororities.”
“I think they will see real growth of their organization, and while there will be the opportunity for them to incorporate their Phi Eta Psi history and founding, they really will be a new organization,” Kinney said. “They will be initiated members of Alpha Sigma Tau.”
“Also, in order to connect the chapters going forward, all Phi Eta Psi alumni will be invited to become initiating members of Alpha Sigma Tau,” Kinney said.
According to Kinney, all current members of Pheta will go through the Alpha Sigma Tau pledging process.
“They will be basically learning from the ground up what it means to be an Alpha Sigma Tau, how to run meetings as an Alpha Sigma Tau [and] what their ritual ceremonies are,” she said.
Geneseo’s Greek community has welcomed the transition.
“The other girls from the national sororities have come up to us or sent us letters congratulating us and offering their help,” Lloyd said.
The new chapter of Alpha Sigma Tau will participate in the Panhellenic Recruitment next semester but will step out in the middle of the process to allow existing national groups to finish. Kinney said that she expects Alpha Sigma Tau recruitment to really kick off during the second week of February.
According to Boyer, it will be a gradual growth process to the level of other national sororities.
“The end goal is to get us up to the same recruitment numbers as the other nationals, but I don’t think this will happen in one semester,” she said.
“I think with next semester’s recruits, we will see girls who want to be part of the foundation of something,” Lloyd said.