Note from the Editor:
This is the third installment in our semester series Why SigEp? where brothers of SigEp’s LA Beta chapter open up to share about what made them join our chapter and the best parts of the experience through their eyes. Enjoy! -Matt Johnson
My name is Philip Marr, although most people at LA Beta call me Phil, and I am a junior history major at LSU. When I think about why I joined SigEp, the main thing that comes to my mind is the genuineness of the men I met during the formal recruitment process.
I grew up in Slidell, Louisiana (about an hour and a half east of Baton Rouge) and came from a high school that saw a large number of graduates go to LSU, so when I was looking for a fraternity experience I was not necessarily in search of immediate surface-level connections to help me get acclimated to campus. I came into the formal recruitment process wanting to find a group of like-minded men who would help me grow as a person, and I found that in SigEp. The ideals of this fraternity caught my initial interest, but it was the men inside this house that kept me coming back.
At LSU, the formal recruitment process can feel a lot like speed dating. You move from house to house shaking hundreds of hands and having baseline conversations about your summer, what you planned to major in, etc. After a while, you start to feel detached from the answers you are giving because you’ve said them countless times and many of the guys you are talking seem just as disinterested in the conversation as you do. However, when I arrived at SigEp during formal recruitment the whole mood of the conversations changed. The men in this chapter made me feel at home, they asked engaging questions and seemed genuinely interested in my answers.
As I progressed in the recruitment process, I learned more and more about what SigEp was about and met more guys, all of which were genuinely happy to talk to me and tell me about their experiences in this place. In the end, I was lucky enough to receive a bid and my SigEp experience has been nothing short of extraordinary.
There is not a doubt in my mind that without SigEp, I would not be the man I am today. One of the key aspects of this is the Balanced Man Program. This aspect of the SigEp experience particularly stood out to me coming through recruitment because of the stigma the traditional Southern Greek Life experience has. The fact that the organization I joined took steps to ensure my brothers’ success by spending time building them up, instead of tearing them down, makes me all the more proud to be a SigEp.
Through our development process, I have become a more organized and effective student and have started setting myself up for success after I leave this place. At LA Beta, we take pride in our academics and look to reward our brothers for their outstanding achievement. SigEp has also allowed me to find a group of brothers who I can depend on and can count on to push me to be my best.
This brotherhood is more than a group of guys that I can spend my Friday nights with or guys that I can go and study with; as our chapter advisor puts it “these are the men that will stand in your wedding and carry your casket”. The men in this chapter have done everything in their power to build me and make me a better man, and I only have the Louisiana Beta Chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon to thank for it.
If you or someone you know would be interested in joining SigEp to start your own Why SigEp? journey, please follow the Membership Interest link. Otherwise, alumni and friends can follow the Refer a Brother link to connect potential new members with the chapter.