Oregon’s newest fraternity wants to show the community what fraternity could be
Fraternity and Sorority Life is facing a large amount of scrutiny within Oregon’s community.
In a time when expansion may seem scary, Alpha Tau Omega, Oregon’s newest fraternity, sees it as the perfect opportunity to redefine what a fraternity is.
Alpha Tau Omega left the University of Oregon in the early 2000s during a time when the university and FSL were going through changes and looking to start fresh, ATO’s expansion consulant Jeff Hazelrigs said.
Oregon has become increasingly popular among prospective students, and the increasing number of students joining FSL make it the perfect time for ATO to be back on campus.
“It’s a good time for Greek Life here,” Hazelrigs said. “I think they’re experiencing a lot of growth with more students choosing Fraternity and Sorority Life as they come to campus, but also more organizations wanting to come here as well.”
In response to the growth, Hazelrigs and his expansion partner, Bo Hunter, are taking this seemingly difficult time for FSL to remind people of the good that it can do.
“It’s changed a lot of our conversation here. We talk a lot about what fraternity could be instead of what they see in us,” Hazelrigs said. “It’s showing that we want to know more about you and how we can better help you get to where you want to be and have some fun along the way, too.”
Others in Oregon’s community do not agree that now is the best time for new fraternities to come to campus.
“As a senator to prevent sexual violence on campus, I’m concerned that we are growing an institution that has been proven to lead to higher rates of rape and sexual assault,” Andrew Lubash, Student Senator said.
One of ATO’s newest founding fathers, Adam Moran, never saw himself in a social fraternity until he heard that ATO was giving him the opportunity to redefine what fraternity is.
“I like that this opportunity allows for us to reshape what a fraternity is,” Moran said. “We can build what we want to see, and I’m really excited to do that.”
Knowing that now is a difficult time for Oregon’s FSL system has not affected men joining ATO.
“I think there’s going to be a lot of work ahead because the reputation of fraternity is pretty shattered,” Moran said. “I just kind of took a leap of faith knowing that this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
Moran and Hazelrigs are looking forward to spreading Alpha Tau Omega’s values
Additional founding father, Carlos Padilla, says that now is a perfect time to bring new chapters to Oregon as long as they’re chapters committed to good. Padilla believes that ATO is one of those chapters.
“People are influencing their brothers in the wrong way (in other fraternities), the chapter we are trying to start is a more positive influence towards society and community, Padilla said.
As expansion consultants, Hazelrigs and Hunter have the fun job of making new fraternities all over the country with the emphasis of leadership in every one. Each fraternity is unique and a byproduct of the founding fathers.
“This is their organization, so we empower them to make the changes that they want to see,” Hazelrigs said.
The opportunity to be the deciding factor in what the new fraternity will be is a great opportunity for Oregon men.
“It’s a great time to talk about why our organizations exist and the purpose behind them,” Hazelrigs said.
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