Chi Psi Kicks of 2015 with the Mid-Year Leadership Retreat!
Thursday, January 08, 2015
Posted by: Teri Sloan
From January 2-5, The Chi Psi Educational Trust hosted its fourth annual Mid-Year Leadership Retreat (MYLR). The retreat brought 35 undergraduate leaders to Fairview, Tennessee, to learn the ins and outs of effective Alpha management through programming led by Central Office staff and trained peer facilitators.
Undergraduates participated in a team building ropes course activity.
With many newly elected #1s in attendance, the MYLR provides participants with comprehensive leadership training, equipping Brothers with the necessary tools to effectively oversee strong daily operations while allowing them to build relationships with other undergraduate leaders and learn from one another's best practices.
A highlight of this year's event was having North-American Interfraternity Conference President and CEO Pete Smithhisler attend and speak on the issues facing fraternities today. He urged the undergraduates to take a stand to lead the needed change in today's fraternities and commented his confidence in the impressive men he met at the Retreat.
As companion programming to the Spencer Institute, the MYLR centers on Chi Psi's Program for Excellence and teaches undergraduates how to use the program to build a better college experience for their men. Rather than simply teach the Program for Excellence, participants were given the chance to see it in action through four Program for Excellence mini-events.
Participants had the opportunity to join Sigma Brother Bert Mathews '76 in a Fireside Chat activity, hearing first-hand of how the Chi Psi experience can enrich their lives long past graduation.
Gamma Advisory Board Chairman Doug Buglewicz '96 led a Dress for Success event, teaching Brothers how to dress for different professional situations and the art of bowties. The men learned about basic car maintenance in an interactive workshop led by Central Office staff member Nick Taylor.
Lastly, the men learned how to navigate a confusing wine list in professional situations through a wine tasting led by Central Office staff member Donald Beeson. Men followed the mini-events with a session to share their favorite Program for excellence events from their own Alphas, allowing the participants to learn not only from the programming but also each other.
With a mix of high-level presentations, discussion exercises and team building activities, the undergraduates were able to develop stronger leadership skills while learning best practices for general Alpha operations, risk management, recruit and pledge education.
Participants have commented that the Retreat is a great opportunity to build their knowledge of their duties in leading an Alpha while allowing them to bond with Alphas on shared difficulties and successes.
Feedback from this year's Retreat has been extremely positive thus far, and we hope to continue to develop this exciting program in the future. The Chi Psi Educational Trust, Inc. still seeking the necessary funding to secure this future of the Mid-Year Leadership Retreat. If you would like to give to the Trust to ensure this program continues, click here and designate "Mid-Year Leadership Retreat" in the comments section.