Delta Upsilon charts as newest chapter, highest community service

The Delta Upsilon Chartering Ceremony inside Straub 156 on October 24, 2015. (Samuel Marshall/Emerald)

“Today is not the end, it’s a beginning,” charge speaker Justin Kirk said to the Delta Upsilon colony at their chartering ceremony.

DU colonized in March 2014. To charter, fraternities must have a certain number of members required by its headquarters and a higher grade point average than the university, said President Hayden Rahn. They must also have a charter, constitution and bylaws in place.

“You can almost think of this period as a colony as like a probationary period, where we’re really just going through a phase to establish our policies and procedures, making sure we’re recruiting quality guys and just setting up the chapter to be successful, not only in the near future, but in the long run,” Vice President of Membership Education Mitchell Parks said.

Chartering provided relief to Vice President of Recruitment Bhavin Patel.

“A slight weight is off of my shoulders,” Patel said.

Internationally, DU’s colonies charter in about two years, but University of Oregon’s colony did it in a year and a half, Rahn said.

“I can’t stress enough how much of a group effort this whole process has been and how it will continue to be a fraternity effort in order to continue to grow and to continue to change all sorts of communities,” Rahn said.

After the ceremony, member Steven Dewey said he was proud of DU for receiving the chapter title.

“When I joined, I was really excited about the prospect of starting something new, of bringing something back to campus,” Dewey said, “so that’s really exciting that after a year and a half, we’re finally here.”

DU also has more volunteer hours than any other UO fraternity—over 3,000.

DU focuses on community service to enhance its fraternity image, Parks said.

“There’s so much more to life than just being a frat guy,” Parks said. “We don’t just see ourselves as that and we don’t want to be seen as that because that’s not who we are. We’re just 67 guys that just happen to be fraternity brothers. Best friends for life, but we’re not frat bros.”

DU’s philanthropy raises money to buy supplies in Jamaica for constructing lunchrooms, schoolhouses and more. Each year, DU men are sent to Jamaica on endowments and scholarships for a week to rebuild.

“We spent four or five days working there with a Jamaican construction crew. No power tools, just manual labor, just serving our fellow global citizens,” Parks said.

DU also contributed to a 2014 spring break beach cleanup with the Oregon State University DU chapter, along with book and blanket drives to help support impoverished neighborhoods in Washington D.C. and gardening at Food for Lane County.

“Our whole idea is that we’re here to serve and that’s just what we do,” Parks said.

Now that DU is a chapter with official administrative support, the fraternity can better interact with the community, Patel said.

“Our goal is to reach out to the community, not just other Greek Life organizations, because we want them to know that we are here as a support system for them, not just ourselves,” Patel said.

The chapter has received a warm welcome from the communities at the UO, in Fraternity and Sorority Life and in Eugene with opportunities to volunteer, resources and advice, Rahn said.

“We’d also like to thank the FSL community as well as the Eugene and UO communities,” Rahn said.

An established chapter, the fraternity plans on looking at the future as room to grow, Parks said.

“We’ve been striving to be the best since day one, and we’ll continue to do that,” Parks said.

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