APRIL 2017 / by Bryan Leach

OMEGA ALPHA GOLF OUTING

 Brothers and alumni enjoying the golf outing

Brothers and alumni enjoying the golf outing

The Third Annual Omega Alpha Golf Outing brought some of the greatest successes the event has seen yet. Despite a bit of rain, the Delcastle Golf Club reached full capacity as current brothers and alumni alike returned back to the Delaware area for the event. A total of 52 golfers spent their afternoon competing in teams of four for the coveted trophy, Delcastle gift cards, and bragging rights. The winners were announced at the networking barbeque following the event, where over three times the amount of alumni from last year’s outing came back to reconnect with current brothers.

Alumni Shannon Carty, a member of the Kappa Pledge Class, cited the different experiences she had while attending the event as both a brother and alumni, “As a brother, I always loved getting to interact with those alumni who made the trip back and hearing about their post-grad experiences. Now, as an alumna, the golf outing serves as such an amazing way for me to both catch up with some of the closest friends I made at UD as fellow alumni and witness firsthand all of the great things our current brothers and chapter are doing.”

Another fellow alumni, Patrick Cydylo, a member of the Lambda Pledge Class, also felt that returning to the golf outing highlighted the Chapter’s growth, stating, “It's always mind blowing to walk into one of these events and see the vast amount of new faces; which not only makes us alumni feel old, but also gives us a sense of pride that the Chapter has continued to excel after we all have graduated and moved into the working world.”

The Golf Outing raised just shy of $3,000, far surpassing the successes of previous years. The Golf Outing’s creator, and now an alumni himself, Pat Vroman had some closing remarks after attending the Third Annual Omega Alpha Golf Outing, stating, “After our third year, it's clear that this event is a product of the dedication that so many people have to this organization. Val [2017-2018 Vice President of Alumni Relations] did an amazing job with the logistics, level of detail, and preparation for the Outing; and I know it will only continue to get bigger in the future. As Alex [2016-2017 Vice President of Alumni Relations], Val, and I know, events like this cannot come to fruition without the help of volunteers from the Chapter. With that being said, I think it's important to thank everyone who contributed to the event each year. It could never be done without that help.”

UDAB

 Brothers Alex Kennedy, Tiffany Canjura, Amanda Flores, Tom Esposito and Erin Mickles

Brothers Alex Kennedy, Tiffany Canjura, Amanda Flores, Tom Esposito and Erin Mickles

Before you plan next year’s spring break trip, you may want to hear what our brothers Jake Brown, Sam Bebout, Tiffany Canjura, Jack Coyle, Hannah Crismon, Tom Esposito, Amanda Flores, Victoria Fusco, Megan Garner, Gina Gesualdi, Alex Kennedy, Dalton Layfield, Brandon Leung, Anthony Manno, Erin Mickles, Charlotte Moro, and Katelyn Murray did this spring break. From Tennessee to Maine, our brothers took it upon themselves to spend their week off giving back to communities.

The University of Delaware Alternative Break (UDaB) is a program that sends student-led teams to communities across the nation, where they provide services that vary from taking care of children in homeless shelters to chopping down wood in community rebuilding efforts. UDaB strives to connect students with non-profit organizations, so that they may become more informed of the social injustices occurring today and the importance of lifelong citizenship.

How did our brothers hear about this program? “Alumni brother Pat Vroman told me about the opportunity,” Anthony Manno said, sharing that, “Pat advocated for a few things at the University of Delaware: Alpha Kappa Psi and going on a UDaB service trip.” Thanks to the suggestion of one of our graduated brothers, Anthony Manno had the opportunity to partake in a Habitat for Humanity trip alongside brother Charlotte Moro in Maryland. When asked to describe his feelings after doing a week of service, Anthony replied, “Adversity is evident in our lives everyday day on campus, but this trip made me realize I am truly fortunate and blessed to have the life that I do.”

After speaking with brothers who had returned from the trip, it was clear they each had two things in common: a newfound appreciation for life and a growing desire to reach out to their local communities. “The small things we do, do have an impact,” Dalton Layfield recalled. In a society ridden with injustices, it may seem that it is impossible to create change; however, our brothers have come back from their trips with a newfound sense of motivation. Dalton has even expressed a desire to be a site leader in the future.

As the school year comes to a close and we all go our separate ways for the summer, remember how lucky we all are to be surrounded by such selfless and inspiring individuals. Because of small acts like these, our world is becoming a better place for everyone to live in. Alpha Kappa Psi thanks our brothers for their relentless dedication to unity and service.

PLEDGE PROPOSALS

 Pi Pledge Class

Pi Pledge Class

The pledges proved themselves yet again on April 17th when they presented their ideas for the betterment of the Chapter in front of the brotherhood. The Pi Pledge Class was separated by their interests into six teams of four, highlighting the different committees these future brothers will be able to join once initiated. Teams included: brotherhood, community service, fundraising, alumni relations, and two professional development committees. Each team brainstormed together to develop a new event that each committee could implement in the future to improve the fraternity as a whole. Ideas ranged from teaming together with a local Delaware library to bring books to those in need for a community service event, to an alumni relations event held at Dave and Buster’s. In the end, the brothers chose an escape room styled brotherhood event as the best pledge proposal of the night. Congrats to Daria Didehvar, Melanie Sillman, Nikki Malhotra, and Moksh Shah, who presented this winning idea!

The excitement did not end there, however, as pledges were also welcomed into their new families upon receiving their Bigs later that night as well.

INITIATION

 Pi Pledge Class

Pi Pledge Class

After seven weeks of hard work, the Pi Pledge Class was finally initiated on April 29th. After Initiation, the entire chapter gathered together in front of Old College to congratulate the new brothers and to take photos on the steps of Old College. Congratulations to our new brothers - we cannot wait to see the value and contributions you bring to Alpha Kappa Psi in the future!

BROTHER SPOTLIGHT: TIFFANY CANJURA

Tiffany Canjura is a sophomore Business Management major with an International Business and Advertising double minor. She pledged Alpha Kappa Psi in the fall of 2016 and is a member of the Omicron Pledge Class.

Outside of Alpha Kappa Psi, Tiffany is involved with a number of organizations on and off campus. She is a Marketing Representative for Insomnia Cookies, a Social Media Ambassador for the University of Delaware, a Teaching Assistant for the Lerner Graduate Program, and the current President of the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA). When asked which of these incredible opportunities has been most rewarding, Tiffany cited her role as President of ALPFA as one of the top, as she plays an influential role in helping the individuals of this organization grow professionally. Through LinkedIn workshops, resume reviews, and inviting speakers to discuss potential internships and job opportunities, Tiffany plays a special role in helping to mentor these individuals.

One of her most recent accomplishments was the creation and execution of the Ernst and Young’s Lerner Games recruiting event, held on April 11th. After developing a strong relationship with Ernst and Young’s main recruiter, Tiffany reached out to her with the hopes of creating a recruiting event that could be considered fun and unlike anything ever done on the University of Delaware campus before. They worked together to create a large scale event that would benefit the entire University of Delaware community. After months of careful planning, the Olympic Games style event had an incredible turnout with over 75 students and 15 recruiters in attendance, charting this inaugural event as a great success.

When asked what advice Tiffany had for the rest of the brotherhood, she stated the following, “Absolutely, my biggest piece of advice would be to pay it forward. Being among such talented and accomplished individuals, it’s natural to feel intimidated or threatened by someone else's success, but rather than feeling all those negative emotions, channeling them to help out your fellow brothers always proves to be more beneficial for both parties in the long-run. We all have different paths for success and we need people like the members of our brotherhood to help us get there.”

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: JAMES DEVLIN

James Devlin graduated from the University of Delaware with dual majors in Finance and Accounting in 2011. As a member of the Alpha Pledge Class and a founding member, James was highly influential in shaping the Omega Alpha Chapter of Alpha Kappa Psi. He started his college career as a Biology major but switched into the business school during the fall of his freshman year. James was hoping to plug into an organization that would both build his professional skills and expand his network with other business students within the Lerner College of Business and Economics. When walking through Lerner Hall one day, James and his friends saw posters looking for students to form an Alpha Kappa Psi chapter at the University of Delaware. James seized the opportunity and was excited by the prospect of creating an organization that would benefit students for years following the conclusion of his own college career. He says, “I thought it would be a great way to get involved and meet new people, and thought it was even better that I could be one of the initial members who would have a say in how the organization was formed and what the eventual culture would be.” However, creating the Omega Alpha Chapter also came with its share of challenges. James remembers the challenges of deciding to become a Greek organization rather than a RSO along with how to properly market the organization to the student body. He looks back at how the rush process evolved during his time in the Chapter, from at the beginning consisting mostly of friends and friends of friends, to eventually reaching much of the Lerner community.

In the Chapter’s early stages, he remembers how it was difficult to host events and fundraisers around campus when the organization was not yet firmly established and widely known. The founding brothers laid the foundations for the professional and social qualities of the Chapter by holding professional development events such as resume reviews and mock interviews as well as date parties and formals. The unique balance between being both professional and social continues to set Alpha Kappa Psi apart on campus thanks to the efforts of our founding brothers like James!

Following his graduation from the University of Delaware, James pursued his CPA and worked for Ernst & Young for several years until going back to school at NYU Stern to complete a MBA. He says, “I wanted to get the degree and further my education but it was more important to me to go to a great school with great classmates and a strong alumni network where I would be able to build relationships that I could hopefully leverage in the future whether it be for a career move or a future business partner/client.” After spending five years with Ernst & Young, James began a career at Bank of America Merrill Lynch on the finance team with their Equity Synthetics and Securities Lending trading desk. In the long run, James sees himself in a CFO role at a hedge fund or alternative investments firm. He is excited to be working in investment banking and looks forward to what lies ahead.


James’ biggest piece of advice to younger brothers is to take advantage of every aspect of Alpha Kappa Psi, from professional development to building an invaluable personal network. He notes that while the technical skills are important, the soft skills are of equal relevance. James suggests reading the news daily and being educated on current events’ allows you to present yourself professionally and hold engaging conversations with others in the corporate arena. He says, “It sounds like a lot but I've had conversations with colleagues and clients about everything from valuation of Snapchat's IPO and outlook on the banking industry to who is pitching that night for the Yankees…You learn the technical skills on the job, but the soft skills are super important and often overlooked while you are in school.”

When laying the foundations of the Chapter, James and the other founding brothers envisioned a community of diverse, yet like-minded individuals that function like a large family. He encourages all brothers to continue to foster that spirit of brotherhood by being accessible to the Chapter as a resource and by utilizing our gifts and skill sets for the betterment of the Chapter. He says, “Make sure you look out for one another however you can. Treat each other like family - there's a reason we're all ‘Brothers’. If someone needs a favor or if they reach out for help for a close friend or family member, go out of your way to help them however you can.”

James is proud of how rapidly Alpha Kappa Psi has grown at the University of Delaware. “I definitely think it has gone in a great direction towards what we initially imagined. Hearing about the amount of people that come out to rush each semester shows the popularity the Chapter has gained and that it is a great organization that people want to be a part of”, says James. Our strong chapter is a result of James’ and the other founding brothers’ dedication, initiative, and vision. Thank you for your continued guidance and we are honored to continue on your legacy here at the University of Delaware!

FACULTY SPOTLIGHT: MARK SERVA

Professor Serva was initiated into Alpha Kappa Psi as a faculty adviser in the spring of 2016 and has already been very involved with the brotherhood. At his Initiation ceremony, he shared words of wisdom with us on the importance of staying unified in the light of the political divide in the nation. He continues to share his knowledge with us whenever we see him around, like at the Third Annual Omega Alpha Golf Outing. The brothers love talking to him, as he has been a mentor to us all.

Professor Serva has taught at the University of Delaware for 18 years, beginning in 1999. Previously, he was also a professor at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. Through the years, he has had the opportunity to teach almost every Management Information Class available at the University of Delaware, but most currently he teaches Introduction to Programming Business Applications (MISY225), Database Design and Implementation (MISY330), and Business Application Development II (MISY350). Professor Serva believes there are two types of learning: content and skills. He focuses more so on skills, believing that skills tend to stick with an individual, but content itself is more easily forgotten.

During this past spring break, he conducted a workshop at American University in Cairo, Egypt. He has been teaching workshops for over 13 years, and his trip to Africa will represent his fifth continent on which he teaches. He believes that, “In contrast to the current divisive political climate in this country toward immigrants, my travels have grown my appreciation for other cultures. The opportunity to work with faculty who love to teach has only enhanced my love and appreciation of this discipline and made me a better teacher.” Thanks for sharing with us Professor Serva, and we look forward to getting to know you more in the years to come!