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The Relevance of Sigma Nu, Seeking Truth is a Lifelong Endeavor

As brothers in Sigma Nu, we have agreed to uphold the values of Love, Honor, and Truth. Perhaps I am out on a limb here, but it seems that the meanings we assign to Love and Honor are generally agreed upon by most, which I would summarize as:

Love – A daily discipline of extending the helping hand without expectation of reciprocity; A mutual respect between people, regardless of background; Brotherhood.

Honor – A commitment to do what is right, even when it is hard, regardless of who knows.

Then we come to Truth, and it seems that Truth is often the odd man out. As an ideal, as a value, what is Truth? What meaning do we prescribe to it? The preamble of the Creed of Sigma Nu offers us some insight.

“To seek in nature, the meaning of the Infinite Truth; to believe that the melody of birds, the laughter of children, the unmeasured sacrifice of motherhood, and the ceaseless yearning of all men for a wide outlook and a nobler existence are prophetic of the perfect joy and love of another world.”

“To welcome the achievements of art and science, religion and learning, labor and law, under whose radiant banners battle the hosts of progress.”

“…holding fast to the conviction that whatever sweetens our natures, uplifts our ideals, strengthens our character and disenthralls our spirits, will bring us in the end into the full stature of a noble manhood…”

As depicted in the words of Brother Walter J. Sears (Kansas), Truth is the seeking of knowledge and continual learning that results in our ongoing maturation. Membership in Sigma Nu is for life, as should be a man’s desire for knowledge, and this need for continued learning is indicative that we are incomplete. This “incompleteness” is why we must embrace and act upon our need for continued growth and development.

With this definition of Truth, we must recognize that it is found within and beyond the classroom. Alumni have experienced the vast gain of knowledge that occurs in life outside of a classroom. Collegiate brothers have begun to experience this reality through their chapter experience. The General Fraternity provides numerous development opportunities to our members to supplement this experiential learning.

  1. LEAD is our award-winning ethical leadership development program that assists both in gaining the knowledge and developing the skills and abilities needed to be an effective and ethical leader for life.
  2. CommunityEdu is a non-opinionated, science-based course addressing the critical issues of alcohol awareness, sexual assault, hazing, and mental wellness that helps students practice safe decision-making and empowers them to make well-informed decisions.
  3. To help brothers develop the skills necessary to support positive mental health, the General Fraternity offers Behind Happy Faces, in partnership with the Human Power Project.
  4. College of Chapters is an intense, interactive program for our collegiate chapter Commanders focusing on chapter management, leadership, and core competencies.
  5. The Pursuit of Excellence Program is our chapter assessment and improvement program. Unlike traditional “minimum standards” programs, the Pursuit of Excellence is focused on year-round planning, evaluation, and improvement of the chapter experience.
  6. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the General Fraternity started the alumni webinar series covering a variety of personal and professional development topics adding further value to the lifelong membership of alumni.
  7. Sigma Nu Talks are a series of curated TED Talks and YouTube clips paired with discussion guides and application ideas. The concept is simple – gather a group of brothers, watch one or more of the suggested talks, and have a conversation.
  8. The Sigma Nu Mentor Network is a direct result of our members’ voices. It is an opportunity for collegiate brothers and young alumni to access and learn from the experience and knowledge of alumni around the world.

The General Fraternity is committed to “developing ethical leaders” and “fostering the personal growth” of every Sigma Nu. The listed opportunities and many others are just a few of the ways brothers and chapters can engage in that form of advancement and evolution.

The uninitiated may ask why we emphasize the growth and development of our brothers and chapters. The simple answer is that lifelong learning –seeking Truth – is central to our values and is critical to our mission. The bottom line is that it is important, and it matters. It matters to you, personally, and to society, as evidenced in research compiled by the North American Interfraternity Conference.

  1. Students spend 90% of their time outside the classroom. Fraternities capitalize on those hours by preparing men for success in college and their futures far beyond what their peers experience.
  2. 83% of members indicate stronger leadership confidence due to their fraternity membership.
  3. Fraternity members show significantly higher learning gains than their peers in their first year in college.
  4. Fraternity members experience stronger retention and persistence to graduation.
  5. Fraternity alumni are more likely to be thriving in every aspect of well-being – career, community, financial, physical, and social well-being.
  6. Fraternity members spend significantly more time volunteering, mentoring, and doing other service work, and they feel like they belong in their communities.

Our brotherhood is a lifelong commitment. In Truth, we commit to lifelong learning, growth, and development of ourselves, our friends and family, our brotherhood, and our communities.

© 2015-2021 Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
9 North Lewis Street, P.O. Box 1869, Lexington, Virginia 24450
Phone: (540) 463-1869 | Fax: (540) 463-1669 | Email: headquarters@sigmanu.org

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