The Sigma Phi Epsilon National Fraternity was founded in the year 1901 in Richmond, Virginia. Our founding fathers based this lifelong brotherhood off of the saying, “This Fraternity will be different.” A short 64 years later, in 1965, the Nebraska Gamma chapter was founded at Kearney State College in Kearney, Nebraska. In 1991, Kearney State College became the University of Nebraska-Kearney, bringing a new academic and social standard for its students.
The Nebraska Gamma Chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon has 84 members, making it the University of Nebraska Kearney’s largest fraternity. Our members are heavily involved across campus and in the community; they pursue a wide variety of degrees, ranging from pre-professional programs to business, and even in the arts. This diversity of paths provides a great support system for all of our members as we progress in our academic careers. On campus, our members play pivotal roles within their various organizations, from expanding their knowledge through research opportunities, holding unique leadership positions, and earning university employment. Our diverse membership is crucial to our identity as a chapter, and one of the many reasons that we have such an expansive and successful brotherhood.
National and University Recognition
The Nebraska Gamma chapter was recently recognized by its national headquarters as one of the top SigEp chapters in the nation—a difficult feat considering there are well over 200 chapters in the United States. As the recipient of a 2019 Silver Buchanan Cup, we were recognized for chapter excellence and exceeding national standards. Being a Buchanan Cup recipient is quite an achievement as SigEp is one of the most progressive fraternities in the nation. The first fraternity to eliminate pledging, the first to openly accept members from all races and creeds, and the only fraternity in the nation in 2020 that did not receive an insurance increase due to its safety and accountability. We’re honored to house 7 Buchanan Cups and we aim to earn many more. One reason for our national recognition is the fact that we annually send members to SigEp leadership programs such as the Carlson Leadership Academy and the Ruck Leadership Institute. Our members also attend the Grand Chapter’s national, biannual Conclave celebration and are occasionally selected for the highly prestigious Tragos Quest to Greece.
As our members strive for success nationally, we have established an incredible academic standard here at home. For eleven consecutive semesters, we held the highest fraternity GPA at the University of Nebraska Kearney; our 3.42 average dwarfs the 2.89 all-campus male average. This incredible achievement can be attributed to the high degree of accountability and standards we hold our members to—here we place the highest emphasis on education. In addition to our academic achievements, we also have a reputation for being one of the most successful organizations in on-campus intramurals: Intramural Organization Champions for over 10 semesters. Additionally, in place of the traditional pledging process, SigEp has installed a developmental and educational program that aims to foster personal, academic, social, and spiritual growth, known as the Balanced Man Program. Our involvement and leadership on
campus, our excellence in the classroom, and our extensive dedication to community success all contribute to our goal of making balanced men.
In addition to being recognized by many as a successful chapter in developing our members, we make it a priority to give back to our community and national philanthropies. At the start of each fall semester, we partner with the University to promote and host Destination Downtown. This includes a performance by SigEp alumni from the Lemon Fresh Day (LFD) band and the selling of LFD shirts from which proceeds benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Midlands. In October, we hold an ice-skating event at the Viaero Event Center to support the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). During the Spring Semester, our members conduct the Big Baller Bracket March Madness Tournament to raise funds for a charity or relief project of the chapter’s choice. Previous years have included Nebraska Flood Relief and MDA. Additionally, in each spring, our chapter hosts the Augie Nelson Alumni Golf Tournament to support the Nebraska Kidney Association and their research. The events mentioned above provide enjoyable experiences to students, the community, and alumni, all in the name of good causes and with the desire to help those in need.
The brothers of the Nebraska Gamma Chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon would like to thank everyone who lends us support. At the end of the day, our main goal is to develop balanced, young men. We accomplish this through the Balanced Man Program and our accountability for each other as we prepare ourselves for the real world. We are proud to be SigEps, and we look forward to making an impact on all of those who walk through our red doors or benefit from our good will. If you have any questions, please reach out to a brother that you know or a member of our Executive Board. We would be happy to provide more information about our chapter.