On Saturday, November 17th the Norwich Housing Corporation (NHC), the division of the National Fraternity that holds, invests and conserves the National Endowment Fund of Theta Chi, met in State College. A luncheon was held at the Atherton Hilton for all Theta Chi’s to attend. In addition to the national representatives, there were also many Omega’s in attendance.
The luncheon was a nice affair, where undergraduates, alumni and national representatives (from NHC, the Grand Chapter and the National office) were able to relax, eat and discuss whatever was on their minds. During lunch, various National and undergraduate members spoke to the group, as well as handed out some honors. Those honors were:
CITATION OF HONORS GIVEN BY THE NORWICH HOUSING CORPORATION
- Richard Maltz, Omega/Penn State ‘90 - Rich is the current Alumni Corporation President. He is also the one responsible for running the Omega website and building communication with all of their alumni.
- Joost Keesing, Epsilon Sigma/Wagner College ‘69 (honorary Omega ’91) - Joost has stepped down as the Omega Alumni Advisor after several years of service to Omega
- Greg Butts - Greg is Owner/Operator of FratFix, Inc. and the property manger of the Omega Chapter house in State College, Pennsylvania. Greg has been The NHC's "go to guy" since acquiring the house and handling the renovations.
SILVER LEGION (25 Years of Membership):
- Pat Joseph DiFeo, Eta Pi/East Stroudsburg ‘78
- Joost Keesing, Epsilon Sigma/Wagner College ‘71
- Bob Sorisio, Omega/Penn State ‘61
GOLDEN GUARD (50 Years of Membership):
- Joe Flagler, Omega/Penn State ‘40
- Bill Grun, Omega/Penn State ‘42
- Robert Waltenbaugh, Omega/Penn State ‘49
As nice as it was to sit, eat and socialize there was some work to be done. After the luncheon the undergraduates, Alumni Corporation and National sat down to discuss the future of Omega’s chapter house and NHC’s vision for what lies ahead. A three-phase plan for taking back ownership of the chapter house was discussed, including:
- Repair, bring up to code and upgrade parts of the physical house – mostly completed.
- Alumni Corporation shall lease chapter house (August 1, 2008) from Norwich for 1 to 1.5 years – to help the alumni corporation come up to speed on costs and other parts associated with running the house. Alumni Corporation would in turn sublease out the chapter house to the undergraduate members during that time.
- Buy back chapter house from NHC – sometime in 2009.
After discussing buying back the chapter house the discussion turned to how to get alumni more involved and other aspects of what the active chapter and alumni corporation need to accomplish. Some of the items discussed were:
- Having two alumni events per year.
- Adult approach to homecoming events at chapter
- Undergraduates making visits to alumni when they go home for breaks
- Estate planning as a long term fundraising tool
- More social events for alumni
- Phone-a-thon by the undergraduates to alumni
- More relaxed Founder’s Day events
After meeting with National, I feel Omega is on the road to recovery and greater times. Though there is still plenty of work to do, the future of Omega chapter looks brighter today than it did two years ago. I know that Alumni Corporation and Active chapter will once again own the chapter house that sits on 523 South Allen Street.
Please feel free to contact me, or any of the other board members, with any questions of comments.
As always, thank you very much for your continued interest and support of Omega.