SigEp’s Kentucky Epsilon chapter at Murray State has taken some extraordinary steps to reach and recruit high-quality men during this unique semester. Rather than going completely virtual, it has been able to operate both remotely and in person, while keeping guests and potential new members safe — and impressed.
The chapter normally holds a Balanced Man Scholarship (BMS) banquet as the culmination of its annual scholarship process. The chapter invites scholarship finalists and their families to an event venue, awards scholarships and strives to make a good impression on applicants and their families.
This year, a large event wasn’t an option. Working with the university to get approval for their plan, the brothers held a drive-in scholarship banquet. Twenty-two finalists and their families selected time slots, came by the chapter home and received their awards. Chapter members and guests carefully adhered to social distancing and mask-wearing, minimizing risk while congratulating the applicants and having great conversations.
“Most other fraternities were doing virtual recruitment, but we wanted to stand out,” Balanced Man Scholarship Chair Sam Coatney, Murray State ’21, said.
The chapter’s creative plan was a huge success, and led to many of the recipients joining the chapter. “The ‘banquet’ was one of the biggest things that stood out to them,” Coatney said.
The successful scholarship effort wouldn’t have been possible without a well-executed plan to build relationships with the applicants. When interviewing applicants, the chapter provided options to interview in person or virtually. Throughout the process, the chapter maintained the relationships they built, creating spaces for members and applicants to play video games and get to know each other in a genuine environment.
“Rush was canceled on campus, but we had already built relationships through the scholarship process,” said Coatney. Those relationships, and its BMS effort in general, surely set up the chapter to continue to grow and thrive in 2020 and beyond.
The Balanced Man Scholarship allows SigEp chapters to identify and recognize men who embody the Fraternity’s values and ideals while assisting deserving students. For more information on recruitment, contact the chapter support team member for your chapter.