QU to introduce new fraternity next fall

William Gavin, Staff Writer

The Delta Chi fraternity will join Quinnipiac University next fall as part of the university’s ongoing effort to expand Greek life chapters on campus.

Delta Chi was first founded in the late 1900s at Cornell University as a justice-minded fraternity and soon after became a leader among fraternities abolishing “Hell Week,” as well as all other hazing rituals in 1929. Since its founding, Delta Chi has initiated over 116,000 members and started 137 undergraduate chapters and 36 active alumni chapters. 

According to Divante Hamilton, director of fraternity growth at Delta Chi’s international headquarters, the fraternity wants to introduce its values of justice and equality to the Quinnipiac community.

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“The values of Delta Chi as a whole are to promote friendship, develop character-advanced justice and assist in the acquisition of a sound education — and we were originally founded as a law fraternity,” Hamilton said. “So, that’s where you kind of see that, that justice piece and something that we hold near and dear to our heart, as something that we can bring to the Quinnipiac community.”

Katherine Pezzella, director of fraternity and sorority life at Quinnipiac, said new chapters bring “energy and vitality” to the community, particularly the 83% of male-identifying undergraduate students that do not already belong to a fraternity. 

While new chapters may be capable of bringing that energy, they first have to spread their message and induct new members, a task made more difficult by safety restrictions against COVID-19. 

“Without a pandemic, the fraternity would normally send multiple staff members to live in Hamden and be present on campus throughout the recruitment period,” Pezzella said. “Their expansion efforts would also include local alumni and perhaps even undergraduate members of other chapters close to QU. We anticipate we may have to make some adjustments to this plan due to QU’s current policy limiting visitors to campus, but we are actively monitoring that situation and will pivot as necessary.”

Hamilton confirmed that alumni living in Connecticut are planning to be active in the outreach process, but that no efforts are fully planned due to restrictions. Delta Chi has expected to begin “outreach tours” for students toward the end of the spring semester as well as over the summer to cultivate interest. The fraternity also intends to hold community events such as virtual game nights, alumni panels and networking opportunities for interested students. 

While outreach may be dampened by the safety restrictions, the fraternity is coming to the university at a time when connecting with other students is challenging , largely due to the move to virtual learning, and a lack of space for in-person activities. 

“In the pandemic, we have seen increased interest in fraternity life as students are looking for ways to connect with other students, find their people on campus and have things to do that follow the pandemic safety guidance,” Pezzella said. “We hope this will continue into the fall semester and help Delta Chi have a large pool to pull from in addition to the existing fraternities.”

Students involved with Greek life have been supportive of Delta Chi’s announcement, such as Francis Malabanan, a sophomore international business major who also serves as a vice president on the executive board of Alpha Sigma Phi. 

“It’s an opportunity to connect with others in Greek life, and develop meaningful connections with a group of guys new to Greek life,” Malabanan said. “As a member of the board we’re always looking for new opportunities to expand and improve Greek life and having Delta Chi on campus will be good for the QU community as a whole.”

Greek life on campus will have plenty of opportunities to expand over the next few years, as the Pi Beta Phi sorority is also scheduled to return in the fall, and the Chi Upsilon Sigma sorority and the Sigma Gamma Rho sorority are in discussion to reopen their Quinnipiac chapters. The Alpha Phi Alpha and Kappa Alpha Psi fraternities and Zeta Phi Beta sorority are also working with the university to open new chapters in the future.