The road to the future is filled with pitfalls. All fraternities are
measured by the inappropriate actions of the few. Fraternities are very
visible on college and university campuses. The concepts of right and
wrong can be lost in misinterpreting our responsibilities to one another.
Brotherhood is more than a word - it is a complex set of responsibilities.
While many of us have learned that "I am my Brother's keeper and he
is mine," it must be kept within the context of common sense. We
cannot respect the rights of others until we can respect ourselves. Each
of us knows "right' from "wrong," including what behavior
is appropriate and acceptable. Sigma Phi Epsilon is built upon those
ideals that you already know and practice. As a father to a son, our
Fraternity passes those ideals to you, our undergraduates, for nurture and
safekeeping. Each year as seniors graduate, they pass on those ideals to
those entering our Fraternity. That trust can be a heavy yoke if care is
not exercised in selecting future generations of Brothers. For a time we
are, in fact, "Keepers of the Faith," and, in truth, many will
retain those ideals for the rest of their lives. Sigma Phi Epsilon will be
many things to each of us at different times in our lives. It will be
excitement, fellowship, pleasure, and responsibility. Responsibility to
our ideals is expressed in our three cardinal principles, namely, Virtue,
Diligence, and Brotherly Love. These ideals are easily practiced when your
brothers share an equal burden. Virtue, Diligence, and Brotherly Love are
not words, but a standard we can use throughout our lives.
You will find that your Brothers become an extended family. A family
that can be depended upon to provide support in times of need. Real
Fraternity exists when Brothers join together to achieve common goals by
sharing knowledge, skills, abilities, and resources. This "pooling
and sharing" allows each of us to become more than we might be
individually. The change from boy to man means leaving immaturity.
Maturity requires that we recognize that we are not totally independent.
We are free to act, but only within the boundaries society places upon us.
This is ever changing and we must continually adapt. If you only learn one
thing from fraternal affiliation, it should be that we are more capable
collectively than individually. And .... only when all of us work together
can we succeed.
Your undergraduate days in Sigma Phi Epsilon provide the opportunity to
learn about life while providing you with an opportunity to learn about
the duties and responsibilities of manhood. Our three cardinal principles
(V, D, BL) are the keys to future success. Your whole life is based upon
your ability to understand and communicate with people.
While we have and will learn many things vicariously from books, much
must be learned from direct observation and participation. We learn much
from seeing, doing, and redoing. As children it was our first learning
experience. It is through this experience that we learn to question,
evaluate, and set goals. By doing these individually, and as a group, we
learn faster because we have the means to see immediate results. Our
laboratory is based upon human relationships between people of different
backgrounds, interests, and abilities.