Gamma Iota Chapter
University of Arizona
Founded: May 7, 1955 Re-Founded: April 28, 2012
Ideal Chapter Size: 120
Conduct Violations: Risk Management/Social (2015, 2016), Hazing (2017)
Arizona Newsletter - Fall 2016
Founded in 1885, the University of Arizona was the first university in the Arizona Territory. It is the Morrill Land Grant College for the territory and state. It has grown to enroll over 42,100 students in 334 fields of study.
The Alpha Sig Club was organized at University of Arizona in the Fall of 1954. The first social function was a Black and White formal on December 4, 1954. The provisional chapter progressed rapidly to chartering on May 7, 1955. The installation was made by Grand Senior President Emmet B. Hayes, Tau ’31 (Stanford), with Alumni Secretary William Holmes, Alpha Pi ’44 (Purdue), representing the Fraternity Staff. At the ceremony, Frank Cowgill, Tau ’17 (Stanford), presented the Delta Beta Xi Award to J. R. Picard, Eta 26 (Illinois). Robert C. Beck, Gamma Iota ’55 (Arizona), was president of the colony, and J. L. Barber, Gamma Iota ’55 (Arizona), and first H.S.P. Eleven chapters were represented at the chartering banquet, the Oregon State Chapter having the largest delegation. Paul Riddle, Gamma Theta ’52 (Miami, Fla), was present and presented a baby rattle to the newest chapter.
In 1961 the chapter moved from a ranch somewhat distant from campus to the former Alpha Tau Omega house at 841 North Tyndall, Tucson. The following year it moved to 1614 E. First Street, Tucson, Arizona. Anti-establishment sentiment in the Vietnam War era, and a rift in chapter membership over policy, led to the chapter's inactivity in 1970. The roster contained 104 names. "Sig's Scuttlebut" and "Gamma Eye" were chapter newsletters.
In 1990, Anthony Litvac, Alpha Tau ’89 (Stevens Tech), recruited an interest group at the University, but the group did not reach provisional chapter status.
Renewed efforts to restore the chapter began in August 2011. In Fall 2011 Geoff Mc Donald, Beta Xi ’05 (Hartwick), of the Fraternity staff recruited an interest group of fifty-three members. Alumni of the chapter and other Alpha Sigs in the Tucson area strongly supported the effort. Gamma Iota was officially recolonized on October 26, 2011. The provisional chapter was active on campus conducting fundraisers, community service events and philanthropy activities. On December 6, 2011, 51 undergraduates were initiated into the provisional chapter.
The chapter was re-chartered on April 28, 2012. Undergraduate Grand Councilor Nick Gordon, Iota ’10 (Cornell), presented the charter; Geoff Mc Donald, Beta Xi ’05 (Hartwick), represented the Fraternity staff.
Director of Chapter Development for Alpha Sigma Phi, Matt Humberger, Gamma Zeta ’03 (Bowling Green), remarked: “The men of the newly organized chapter have demonstrated a true commitment to Alpha Sigma Phi and have set high standards and lofty goals for their new group. Existing on such a large campus, they have committed to high performance in academics and recruitment, while immersing themselves into the Greek community on campus.
The Gamma Iota Chapter at the University of Arizona saw the most recruitment success of any chapter of Alpha Sigma Phi in the 2014-15 academic year. Their 49 new members in the fall and 68 new members throughout the course of the year made Gamma Iota second-to-none. However, the chapter was sanctioned for risk management violations in 2015 and 2016. Fall rush in 2016 brought 34 pledges, and a chapter size of 117.
Gamma Iota Chapter won Alpha Gamma Upsilon Bronze Cup Awards in 2015, 2014 and 2013. The chapter won the Scholastic Improvement Award for 1965-66.
H. N. Tench, Gamma Iota ’56 (Arizona), and G. W. Videen, Gamma Iota ’56 (Arizona), have received the Delta Beta Xi Award.
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