Newly elected student leaders of Beta Omicron Chapter underwent intensive training for their respective roles at Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity’s Mid Year Leadership Conference. Held January 13-15 in Dallas, the conference prepares officers for their duties as leaders of the chapter.
The Next Man theme of Mid Year 2012 celebrates the importance of individual actions now, while examining the greater ramifications of individual leadership, choice, and potential has on future Pi Kapps. The officers are at pivotal point in their development as leaders by choice. They will continue building what those who came before them have worked to achieve, and their decisions pave the wave for those who will come after them. Participants left the conference equipped with the training and resources needed to be successful officers, armed with an adaptable change framework that will help them approach behaviors, situations or roadblocks that prevent their chapter and brothers from realizing their potential, and inspired to do their part to develop a chapter of intelligent, quality men who commit to living the values of Pi Kappa Phi for a lifetime.
Helping student leaders connect with the conference’s message sometimes needs an extraordinary form of support. Keynote speakers Rick Barnes and TJ Sullivan (Alpha Psi, Indiana University) delivered powerful, high-energy presentations that guided students to the realization that change is possible on their campus. Barnes challenged students to “lead with letters,” by revisiting the values and purpose of the Fraternity. He asked, “Do we put bigger expectations on new members than we put on ourselves?” Barnes followed the question by challenging chapter leaders to first push themselves toward higher standards.
Sullivan, a Pi Kappa Phi alumnus, is the co-founder and CEO of Campuspeak. He shared a valuable lesson from his new book “Motivating the Middle.” The message — adjust resources away from motivating the least productive chapter members to the middle third. Sullivan’s keynote helped members visualize a definition of a “good enough” brother and why that chapter-accepted criteria is important to fighting apathy and helping each member maximize their experiences.
Fraternity CEO Mark Timmes (Alpha Epsilon, University of Florida) gave a personal account of the legacy he shaped in his chapter, taking a 30-man chapter to more than 100 in a short period of time utilizing limited resources. Beta Omicron Alumni Association President Lane Luckie served as the conference’s master of ceremonies. In addition to those duties he outlined new developments to the Fraternity’s emerging leaders institute, Pi Kapp College. Luckie also explained how the Pi Kappa Phi Foundation supports the education and leadership efforts of the Fraternity. Serving in his sixth year on the National Council, National Treasurer Tracy Maddux (Zeta Theta, University of Texas) provided insight into the growth and direction of the Fraternity. He announced that Pi Kappa Phi remains in among the ten largest national fraternities. Maddux was pleaded to announce that members raised more than a million dollars last year for Push America and people with disabilities. “We’re a fraternity that has to accept that while we’ll continue to celebrate our accomplishments, we’re a fraternity with a lot of work to do,” he said before outlining several focus areas for the coming years. “What are you going to do to be the best ‘next man’ that you can be?”
Ten unique educational tracks were offered during the three-day conference: archon, vice archon, treasurer, secretary (chapter operations), warden (member education), historian (alumni relations), chaplain (living the ritual), risk manager, standards board chair, and the Push America Academy. Northwestern State’s delegation included archon Ryan Jeffords, Derek Sandoval, Russell Patrick, Kyle Sandoval, Cameron Moises, Michael Monsour, and Tyler Holdsworth. Several Beta Omicron chapter alumni served as faculty members for the conference. Nick Breaux, also a Push America staff member, joined fellow alumnus Rodney Clements to facilitate the Push America Academy. Lane Luckie also facilitated Risk Management training sessions, arming students with the ability to make safer decisions in their home chapters.
Held each January, Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity hosts Mid Year Leadership Conferences in Charlotte, North Carolina; Baltimore, Maryland; Dallas, Texas; and St. Louis, Missouri.