Two of the fraternity houses built last year and occupied by independent students will be home to the brothers of the Virginia Kappa Chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Virginia Delta Chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon starting in fall 2014.
“Two chapters [that] had been assigned houses for this academic year lost their housing privileges last spring, leaving the houses unassigned,” Director of Residence Life Deb Boykin said. “The presidents of Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Sigma Phi Epsilon were happy to know they were granted housing.”
The fraternities followed ResLife’s website criteria for new special interest housing proposals and submitted their requests before Thanksgiving. The Special Interest Housing Committee then reviewed the proposals and discussed them at length. The recommendations were handed to Vice President for Student Affairs Ginger Ambler ’88 Ph.D. ’06. Boykin also took part in the determinations.
“The fraternity houses were constructed to house fraternity chapters and a community building to serve fraternity and sorority life on campus,” Boykin said.
While renovations will not be made to the reassigned fraternity houses, chapter letters will be added to the exteriors to match the letters currently provided on the other houses.
Sigma Phi Epsilon became a recognized fraternity in fall 2010, built on the Balanced Man Program, an initiative committed to not following conventional pledging rituals and to helping students adjust to life in and out of college.
“The biggest reason I joined was the opportunity to create something where I felt like I belonged,” Sigma Phi Epsilon member Joe Acosta ’14 said. “I liked some other fraternities on campus but knew I didn’t fit in perfectly with most of them. I felt like I fit in with a few guys that were in Sigma Phi Epsilon at the time, and I knew I wanted to help build an organization that I’d be proud to be a part of.”
Acosta and his fraternity brothers followed developments with the fraternity complex very closely. The fraternity knew they would not be included in the original housing assignments due to a lack of size, but planned to apply this fall.
“It certainly is frustrating when you don’t have a central place on campus that you and your brothers can call your own,” Acosta said. “Having the house on campus will be huge boost for us in terms of on campus presence. It will be a great tool for rush and be a great central location where our brothers can gather. I’m excited to come back to school in the future and see our continued success.”