By KATE VONDEBUR
During the spring of 2013, Phi Alpha was not allowed to have a pledge class, but after a year of suspension from pledging, the boys are back in the game and better than ever.
After incidents that occurred during the 2012 pledging period, pledging was halted for all seven literary societies, and after further investigation, Illinois College chose to suspend Phi Alpha from pledging for a year. However, Lincoln’s favorite IC men have not been idle in their time off. They’ve been working hard to create a new ideal for themselves – something to work towards as a brotherhood.
“It sounds naive for me to say that most of the effects [of this suspension] have been positive, but they really have,” said Phi Alpha Vice President Jacob Dander. “It’s been a nice opportunity for us to evaluate our methodology [and] reevaluate traditional Phi Alpha values.” He added, “we took a look at what we wanted to excel at and what we thought a lit society should be really made that more of a goal.”
President Bret Thixton added that maintaining the highest GPA of any group on campus – a longstanding Phi Alpha tradition – and being a diverse, multicultural group of guys are two of Phi Alpha’s main ambitions.
This reevaluation has been especially essential to the Phi Alpha pledge program. Thixton and Dander assert that it is a completely new program that will be used for this upcoming pledge period. Dander says that the new program is “a better reflection of the values we’ve talked about, and a reflection of wanting to improve those things.”
In regards to rush, Dander says they’re planning to stick with what they always do. “We’re not the type to get in your face,” he says. “If you’re interested in us, we’re interested in you.”