At the 2017 Grand Chapter Conclave in Orlando, 27 chapters were awarded the Buchanan Outstanding Chapter Award. Chapters that receive the Buchanan Cup are among the top fraternity chapters in the country and excel in every area of operations. The paragraphs below list some of the accomplishments of these Buc Cup-winning chapters over the past two years.
Ten chapters were given Gold Buchanan Outstanding Chapter Awards for winning the award for five consecutive Conclaves or more — at least ten years of sustained excellence. The 2017 Gold Buc Cup recipients are:
California Chi RLC – Loyola Marymount
California Chi has the highest manpower and GPA — 3.51 — on its campus as well as a 95 percent retention rate. It also recruits through the Balanced Man Scholarship. The chapter is an RLC despite not having a chapter facility, and it hosts university-accredited courses, working with faculty members to design relevant curriculum.
D.C. Gamma – Georgetown*
D.C. Gamma is a strong chapter that has used an unstructured Greek culture as an opportunity to be better rather than an excuse to underperform. It has a well-developed Balanced Man Program that incorporates mentorship as well as six service hours per challenge. The chapter is also one of the largest fundraisers in the country to Relay for Life, and it utilizes its BMP and sound mind programming to discuss societal issues.
Illinois Alpha RLC – Illinois
Illinois Alpha has won 17 campus awards over the past two years, including fraternity of the year. The chapter regularly updates its Balanced Man Program and has a robust Brother Mentor challenge. The largest chapter on their campus, the brothers have recruited three faculty fellows who host academic presentations inside the chapter house. New members are involved in leadership positions as soon as they join, and individual academic success is recognized and rewarded.
Maine Alpha RLC – Maine*
Maine Alpha is the largest fraternity on its campus and recruits a significant portion of its membership each year through the Balanced Man Scholarship. The chapter hosts members of the university administration in their substance-free house to hold meaningful dialogues, and their resident scholar is active in assisting with academic standards. Sigma challenge participants receive a campus tour with their fraternity and sorority life advisor, and the chapter organizes a basketball game between a Greek all-stars team and the Maine varsity basketball team to raise funds for Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Nebraska Alpha RLC – Nebraska
Through their faculty fellow, Nebraska Alpha takes service-learning trips to Uganda and Ecuador. Brothers are required to participate in at least two other campus organizations, and several university classes are taught in the chapter’s substance-free house. The chapter is the largest on its campus, and it has strong academic programming and standards.
New Jersey Alpha RLC – Stevens*
New Jersey Alpha received the NIC Chapter Award of Distinction–awarded to only five fraternity chapters across the entire country–as well as several campus awards. The chapter has a 3.6 GPA and utilizes resources within the chapter and through the university to support brothers academically. It has multiple faculty fellows and a resident scholar who host RLC events within the chapter’s substance-free house.
Ohio Gamma RLC – Ohio State
Ohio Gamma has the highest manpower on campus and a GPA .25 higher than the all-campus average. They have a strong Balanced Man Program that is regularly updated as well as a 3.0 minimum GPA and academic support program. Many brothers are recruited through the Balanced Man Scholarship, and the chapter has hosted several high-ranking members of the university administration in its facility, which is substance-free in common areas.
Ohio Iota RLC – Toledo
Ohio Iota consistently has the top GPA and manpower on its campus. From 2015–17, brothers in the chapter were leaders in 20 other campus organizations and founded 6 others. It has a strong BMP with deadlines for challenge completion, and many of its members were recruited with the Balanced Man Scholarship. Brothers in the chapter home benefit from a substance-free policy, which has contributed to their success in programming and academics.
Ohio Theta RLC – Cincinnati
Ohio Theta has an exceptional BMP with clear expectations and timelines for each challenge. Its mentoring program includes new member, chapter and professional mentors. The chapter has four faculty fellows and two resident scholars who provide academic programming in the chapter home.
Oregon Alpha RLC – Oregon State
Oregon Alpha has the highest GPA and manpower on its campus and has won the top fraternity award on campus nine years in a row. Its Epsilon challenge includes 50 hours of community service, and it has substance-free spaces within its facility. The chapter has a faculty fellow who comes to chapter lunches weekly to meet with members informally. It has a minimum GPA of 3.0 and competes among teams within the chapter for best grades.
* Chapters that earned their first Gold Buc Cup
Three chapters won their first Gold Buc Cup. Ohio Theta RLC received its 15th Buc Cup in a row, continuing its streak as the chapter with the most consecutive Buc Cup wins ever.
The 2017 Silver Buchanan Cup recipients are:
Iowa Delta RLC – Drake
Iowa Delta excels in Balanced Man Program and Residential Learning Community programming, hosting a monthly lecture series in their substance-free chapter home. Supported by a faculty fellow, the chapter’s academic support program has increased their GPA every semester during the application period. The chapter has logged 1,200 hours of service at Big Brothers Big Sisters in their area and is the largest on their campus in manpower.
Indiana Zeta RLC – Valparaiso
Indiana Zeta has recruited over 40 percent of its recent members through the Balanced Man Scholarship and received numerous recognitions from their institution. Epsilon challenge participants find a campus mentor who helps facilitate post-college success, strengthening ties to their university. As part of its sound body programming, a brother on the track team invited eight other Division I athletes to speak and mentor on physical health and performance.
Iowa Theta RLC – Northern Iowa
Iowa Theta was recently accredited as an RLC, effectively utilizes chapter and university spaces for academic programming, and holds the highest GPA among fraternities. Several spaces in the chapter home are substance-free, and two faculty fellows advise the chapter. Members are in leadership positions on campus, and they consistently recruit half of their new members through the Balanced Man Scholarship.
Georgia Alpha RLC – Georgia Tech
Georgia Alpha excels at recruitment through year-round recruitment and the Balanced Man Scholarship, recruiting over 90 percent of its new members with the scholarship. For the last four semesters, their GPA has been at least .2 higher than the all-campus average. Their RLC programming includes a “Brothers Teaching Brothers” peer learning experience, and many chapter members are leaders on campus.
Kentucky Zeta – Morehead State
Kentucky Zeta implemented the Balanced Man Program several years ago. The top chapter on campus in GPA, they are moving toward RLC accreditation. The chapter utilizes campus resources and their faculty fellow for BMP challenges as well as Sound Mind and Sound Body programming. Half of their membership has been recruited through the Balanced Man Program.
Louisiana Beta – Louisiana State
Louisiana Beta has recovered strongly from a membership review and expanded its Balanced Man Program, utilizing campus staff to educate brothers on personal finances, health, fitness and academic success. It holds the top GPA on campus and recruits a significant proportion of its new members from the Balanced Man Scholarship.
Michigan Beta RLC – Western Michigan
Michigan Beta is the largest chapter on its campus and set a record for recruiting the most men in the school’s history. It has a culture of academic excellence with a minimum GPA of 2.95 and collaboration with their faculty fellow, who helps brothers select courses that align with their interests and presents from his research on alcohol and drug abuse. The chapter has well-defined BMP challenges that utilize university resources and recruits over 30 percent of members through the Balanced Man Scholarship.
Michigan Theta RLC – Lawrence Tech
Michigan Theta has the highest GPA on campus and a strong Balanced Man Program with 20 brothers completing the Brother Mentor challenge during the review period. The chapter has two engaged faculty fellows and a structured academic improvement plan for members. Nearly half of their chapter has attended the Carlson Leadership Academy for the past two years.
Missouri Eta RLC – Missouri State
Missouri Eta has recently completed a new substance-free Residential Learning Community facility. The chapter was named organization of the year on campus and faculty fellows advise each BMP challenge. Rising leaders are welcome at officer retreats, and service learning with the chapter’s community partner is built into the BMP.
Montana Beta RLC – Montana State
Montana Beta has the best GPA and highest manpower among fraternities on campus. They hold lectures from faculty in their substance-free facility and have an extensive academic support program. Their faculty fellow hosts a monthly dinner where brothers can share personal struggles and support one another. Over three-quarters of their members are recruited through the Balanced Man Scholarship.
North Carolina Mu RLC – Elon
North Carolina Mu has the highest manpower among fraternities and has received the Donald C. McCleary Award for member development the past two years at Carlson. The chapter has consistent involvement with a local community organization and won organization of the year on their campus. Part of their prominence is due to their consistent RLC events open to the whole campus.
Oklahoma Alpha RLC – Oklahoma State
Oklahoma Alpha has excelled in its Balanced Man Program implementation with strong objectives and clear timelines in all four challenges. The chapter has a strong overall GPA with a minimum of 3.0 and frequently hosts academic programming. The chapter has also helped other organizations improve sexual assault awareness, and many brothers are in leadership positions on campus.
Pennsylvania Tau – West Chester
Pennsylvania Tau has the highest GPA and manpower on its campus. It has members consistently applying to and attending the Ruck Leadership Institute and the Tragos Quest to Greece, and a member recently received the Ruck Leadership Award at Carlson. The chapter’s GPA is .2 higher than the campus average, and the brothers won fraternity of the year on their campus in 2015.
South Dakota Alpha – South Dakota State
South Dakota Alpha has a robust Balanced Man Program and a well-documented recruitment plan. The chapter has an engaged faculty fellow and is breaking ground on a new chapter home. Each month, a different brother facilitates discussion on a relevant topic at “Saturday Night Club.” A different volunteer mentors each one of the four BMP challenges.
Texas Alpha – Texas–Austin
Texas Alpha retained 95 percent of its seniors over the application period and has achieved academic success on campus. One of the ways it maintains its academic success is by reimbursing members for half of their expenses at a nearby tutoring center. The brothers are pursuing RLC accreditation and have an engaged faculty fellow as well as designated substance-free spaces. After implementing the BMP several years ago, the chapter has built a Brother Mentor challenge that includes a lecture series, a senior experience trip and AVC networking dinner.
Virginia Pi RLC – Christopher Newport
Virginia Pi runs a very strong Balanced Man Program, including a strong Brother Mentor challenge that has contributed to an 89 percent retention rate. It is the largest chapter on its campus and has the highest GPA as well as a substance-free chapter home. Ninety-five percent of the chapter has leadership roles in other organizations on campus, and the chapter has three faculty fellows.
Washington Alpha RLC – Washington State
Washington Alpha has a strong 365-day recruitment model, with over half of its membership recruited through the Balanced Man Scholarship. It has two faculty fellows and a resident scholar who provide academic programming and support. The chapter has had the top GPA among 26 fraternities for two years, and it awards nine scholarships to high-performing brothers. The chapter has hosted a “Man Talk” series, with speakers including the men’s basketball coach, diversity office staff members, athletic director, a local attorney and police department staff.