The 2012 Regional Conferences are off to a great start. With a special thanks to our Brothers at Alpha Pi Delta and Alpha Rho for their exceptional work as hosts of the Southeast and Northeast Conferences, I’d like to recount these amazing days for you!
At the 2012 Mid-Year Leadership Retreat, Brothers participated in Regional Conference planning breakout groups where they were prompted with “What do you want out of your regional conference experience?” After some discussion, three main topics emerged:
1) An alumnus speaker
2) A fun social event
3) Revamped programming
Let’s see how we did…
On February 18th weekend nearly 70 Brothers from around the Southeast gathered in Raleigh, North Carolina for a day full of strategies and slapshots (patience, reader, you’ll see).
From there, participants had a chance to choose their own adventure during an hour of small group round-table discussions. Some men chose to learn about strategies for recruitment, while others focused on the program for pledge education. Other conversations centered around the national standards program and creating a high level social event.
At that point, the men had access to an alumni panel consisting of Brothers with Executive Council, Educational Trust, Alumni Corporation, and Central Office experience. The hope was to show Brothers the opportunities available them after graduation to stay involved with Chi Psi.
After a short break participants met up at the Raleigh IcePlex. The Pi Deltas cooked up their award winning barbecue for dinner. For the grand finale, Brothers and Pledges took the ice for a rousing game of broomball.
On February 25th weekend more than 60 Brothers from around the Northeast gathered in New Brunswick, New Jersey. While the classroom sessions remained largely the same, there were a few new aspects. Justin and I led a communication workshop where participants got to practice their team communication skills and their interpersonal skills.
We also had the pleasure of Br. Bill Royce leading a ritual and traditions conversation at the Alpha Rho Lodge. Meanwhile, pledges and colonists engaged in a Preamble talk where they dove deeper into the meanings of that document.
The evening started off with distinguished coat-and-tie banquet hosted at the Lodge. Brothers and guests were treated to a delightful meal prepared by the talented Chef Andrew and served by the Rho Brothers. The honorable judge Vince LeBlon was our guest speaker, sharing his lessons learned from a lifetime of Chi Psi involvement. He related this to his work, his family, and his alumni corporation presidency.
A poignant moment of the banquet was when Bill Royce called the men from the recently minted Alpha Alpha colony up to the front of the room. He presented to them a memento of the occasion and wished them well on the journey that lie ahead.
“It was great to watch the men from Wesleyan receive their recognition from Brother Royce during the dinner. It struck me and the other Alpha Chis because it reminded us of Alpha Chi’s history and our refounding in the 1980s. To realize that those men would someday be held in the regard that we hold our founders was striking.” Dan Barnes, Alpha Chi #1
The 2012 NERC concluded with a night of card games, with the winner receiving a cigar donated by an Alpha Rho alumnus. All in all, a great experience as had by all.
Be on the lookout for these upcoming regional conferences!