Several hundred alumni brothers, spouses, national leaders and current undergraduate chapter members from around the country will converge on the Monmouth College campus May 26-28 as the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity chapter celebrates its 75th anniversary at the College.
Events planned for the weekend include outdoor ceremonies, panel discussions with SigEp national and local fraternity leaders, a public display of chapter memorabilia, campus tours and a talk on Monmouth history. A program for spouses speaking to Monmouth’s history of developing women leaders through Greek organizations is also planned. The event will be capped off with a banquet featuring alumni speakers from several generations and Grand President Billy Maddalon, North Carolina State ’90.
“Monmouth College has a strong legacy of Greek organizations and they have made significant contributions to the fabric of our campus community, student leadership and alumni loyalty,” said Monmouth President Clarence Wyatt, noting that two national sororities – Kappa Kappa Gamma and Pi Beta Phi – were founded at the 170-year-old college.
SigEp’s Illinois Gamma chapter at Monmouth was launched on May 22, 1948, nearly 47 years after the fraternity was founded. The chapter has since initiated 1,180 members. Nationally, the fraternity has 198 chapters and more than 360,000 lifetime brothers, ranking it third among all U.S. fraternities.
“Monmouth SigEp alumni are now located in 47 states and five foreign countries,” said Tom Sargent, a Monmouth professor and 1985 graduate who is serving on the event planning team. “Their career paths include teachers, coaches, pastors, scientists, physicians, bankers and financial executives, entrepreneurs, lawyers, farmers, college professors and geologists, plus fathers and grandfathers. Many of them settled in Monmouth, Galesburg and Warren County after graduation and are contributing to their communities.”
One of those making local contributions is Wendell Shauman ’67, a former corn breeder who now operates a fourth-generation family farm near Monmouth.
“We believe this event will be quite extraordinary, in that it will gather fraternity brothers from so many generations,” said Shauman, another member of the planning group. “We are expecting alumni in ages ranging from their 20s to 90s. This kind of event doesn’t happen more than once or twice in a lifetime.”
Another Monmouth alum, Brad Nahrstadt ’89, serves on the fraternity’s national board of directors, as well as on the Monmouth Board of Trustees.
“Illinois Gamma has been recognized with a Buchanan Cup 14 times as one of the top 10% of chapters in the U.S. in terms of academic performance, campus leadership and community service,” he said. That ranks fourth among U.S. SigEp chapters.
“SigEp revolutionized the U.S. fraternity system in 1991 when it unveiled its ‘Balanced Man Program’ focusing on academic achievement, personal and career development for members,” said Nahrstadt.
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For a complete event schedule, visit monmouthcollege.edu/alumni/events/sigep-75-anniversary.
To register online: form.123formbuilder.com/6361628/sigep-75th-registration.
Sigma Phi Epsilon (sigep.org) was founded on Nov. 1, 1901, by 12 men at Richmond College (now the University of Richmond) in Richmond, Virginia. In 1901, the small church-related college had about 300 students, quite similar in age and character to Monmouth College at that time. The fraternity’s national headquarters are in Richmond.
***Courtesy of Barry McNamara, Monmouth College***