Greek chapters receive national honors

Two University of Miami fraternity chapters have won their respective organization’s most prestigious awards given to individual chapters.

The Gamma Phi chapter of Sigma Chi and the Florida Alpha chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon were both presented with the distinctions over the summer. Sigma Chi also won their fraternity’s international award for greatest overall chapter improvement over the past year, while SAE won an additional four awards.

Sigma Chi received the Peterson Significant Chapter Award in early August. The award is given to chapters that show excellent performance in operation and fraternal programming while embodying the ideals of Sigma Chi.

The UM chapter has won the award four times in the past. They also won the James F. Bash Significant Improvement Award for the first time.

Sigma Alpha Epsilon was awarded the John O. Moseley Award for Fraternity Zeal in July. The honor acknowledges chapters that exhibit outstanding performance as a whole and best fulfill the 12 core areas which they believe personify a “true gentleman.” In addition, the Florida Alpha chapter was also named a Chapter Achievement award winner, a Rex A. Smith Chapter Efficiency award winner, a K. Martin Huffman Communications award winner and a Scholarship Excellence award winner.

SAE is the largest social fraternity in the country with over 280,000 members and more than 200 chapters worldwide.

The accomplishments cap a successful year for Greek life at Miami, as the Gamma Delta chapter of Alpha Delta Pi also won their sorority’s Diamond Four Point Award for overall chapter performance in their first year eligible.

ADPi and SAE were both installed on campus in 2004.

In a university press release, former Coordinator of Greek Affairs Kara Miller said it is rare for a young chapter to receive this accolade.

“It’s astounding that our chapter even won it, as we’ve only been back on campus for two years,” said Daniel Poterek, president of SAE.

However, Poterek emphasized that his chapter realized that being named the best internationally did not mean there was no room for improvement.

“We’re going to have to make bigger and better goals,” he said.

Poterek also said Miami chapters like his are particularly successful because members join not for just social opportunities, of which there are already plenty in Miami, but to become active in community and campus events.

“It’s the alumni of Greek life that donate to the university and really stay involved,” said Joseph Fasullo, public relations officer of Sigma Chi.

The awards also serve as a send-off for Miller, as she left her position at Miami in early August to become the assistant dean of students, fraternity and sorority affairs, and programming at Cornell University in New York.

“We got to know eachother over the years she was here,” said Poterek, who considers Miller a good friend. “She really helped shape Greek life as it is at UM, and I know she’s going to do the same thing at Cornell University.”

Fasullo agreed.

“I really enjoyed working with Kara,” he said. “I thought she did a great job at the University of Miami and I will truly miss her.”

Nate Harris may be contacted at