Section: archive

Greek Council Okays New Fraternity

By Rosalyn Aquila

Greek Council approved Kenyons first new fraternity in more than 50 years on Monday, Nov. 5, in a narrow 5-4 vote, with two groups abstaining. The newly recognized brothers of Sigma Phi Tau plan to request colonization by the national fraternity, Phi Kappa Tau.

President of Sigma Phi Tau Tristan Neviska 13 got the idea to bring the fraternity to campus after working at Flying Horse Farms, a Mount Gilead, Ohio camp for sick children. The camp also has connections to the College it is a member of the SeriousFun Childrens Network, an international family of camps founded by Paul Newman 49, a Phi Kappa Tau himself when he briefly attended Ohio University.

Because of the camps connections with Phi Kappa Tau, Neviska worked with several members of the fraternity. Hearing the guys stories about their chapters and everything, I was like, Man, why did I never go Greek? Neviska said. Thats what started the thought process. I found that I really liked the mission of Phi Tau and all the brothers I met were great.

From there, Neviska began reaching out to see if any friends were also interested in starting the fraternity. Ive always felt like I wanted to join a fraternity, but I never found a fit with any other fraternity on campus, he said. So, I was just talking to people on Facebook, and I was asking my friends, Why didnt you ever go Greek? and they all [said] the same thing. They wanted to be Greek, but they just didnt feel like they fit with other groups.

After garnering enough interest among friends, Neviska met with Director of Greek Life Christina Mastrangelo and Greek Council President Andrew Tint 13 to discuss the process of starting a Greek organization.

The proto-fraternitys 15 members began meeting regularly, and on Monday, Oct. 29 the fraternity hopefuls presented their petition for official recognition to Greek Council. The following Monday, Nov. 5, Greek Council approved the fraternity.

Our members have all felt excitement about the idea of fraternal brotherhood, the petition read. However, we do not find ourselves identifying with any of the images that the other Kenyon fraternities convey and feel that there are many students who are similarly pulled towards the Greek system, only to find that they do not blend well with any of the fraternities presently on campus. These are the students who we would seek to recruit for our organization.

Neviska described the fraternity as an alternative to other Greek organizations at Kenyon. We dont really have one type in the fraternity, he said. Its very varied. Were not really focused on social events. Its really more purist in a way. Were trying to just really focus on brotherhood and holding each other to a higher standard, and philanthropy, too.

Tint echoed Neviskas description, adding he was excited for what this addition to Greek life will offer students. I think this organization is going to be great because it reaches a group of [students] who I think otherwise wouldnt go Greek, he said.

Next, in the hopes of Phi Kappa Tau colonization, the fraternity will need to follow a 12-point list of requirements to become a chapter, according to Neviska. The perks of being nationally recognized are well worth it, he said, for insurance and networking purposes as well as general support.

Neviska said he hopes the fraternity will eventually become a fully-recognized chapter, a process he anticipates will take several years. At Kenyon, specifically, the brothers are also on a five-year probationary period, after which they can apply for division housing, according to Tint.

For now, the brothers of Sigma Phi Tau are looking forward to their future, mainly spring rush. Were talking about things to really go back to the roots of pledging, Neviska said. [Things like] bonding with your fellow pledges and learning about the group.

[starbox id=”rosalyn_aquila”]


Comments for this article have closed. If you'd like to send a letter to the editor for publication, please email us at