National President, Dick Elder addressed the assembled brothers this past summer at our Convention. He cast an inspiring vision for Theta Chi’s Sacred Purpose movement.
Brother Elder recognized that many of our chapters have already received encouraging media attention for their positive impact. In the spirit of spreading Sacred Purpose beyond the walls of Theta Chi, he challenged each chapter and colony to work directly with their campus newspapers and other campus media outlets.
The goal is that every chapter and colony will be showcased in their campus newspaper before January 2015. The article will fully highlight our national Sacred Purpose movement and emphasize the positive impact of our local chapters.
The media exposure will draw needed attention to the health and safety challenges facing today’s students and Greek organizations. It will also position our chapters and colonies as centers of influence and positive change. As a result, Theta Chi will increasingly be a relevant and powerful voice at our host institutions.
With the Vice President of Health and Safety taking the lead, we are asking all chapters and colonies to immediately connect with the campus newspaper editor and other campus media leaders.
How to get started (total time needed about 15 minutes)
Your logical next step is to engage your local campus newspaper. To make that easy for you, we have created a pitch letter and press release. The pitch letter is a brief email letter that introduces you and your story idea to the newspaper editor/reporter. It is written to quickly capture their attention and motivate them to learn more. The press release offers additional information about the Sacred Purpose movement.
The next steps
1) Identify the names, email addresses, and telephone numbers of the campus newspaper editor and other media leaders
2) Add your name and contact information at the bottom of the pitch letter
3) Copy and paste the contents of the pitch letter into the body of an email(s)
4) Address the email(s) to the newspaper editor and other media leaders
5) Copy and paste the email subject line into the subject line of the email(s)
6) Attach the Theta Chi Sacred Purpose press release to the email(s)
7) Send the email(s)
8) If you do not hear from the editor within two days, place a follow up phone call and request a 15 minute meeting
9) Make yourself available for an interview with the newspaper or other media outlets
10) Email the finalized newspaper article(s) to the International Headquarters so we can highlight your success stories and progress
Thanks for spreading the word about Theta Chi Sacred Purpose. We look forward to hearing about your continued success!!
Throughout this first six months, I have received hundreds of emails and phone calls from undergraduates, alumni, parents and university administrators. Those messages have been filled with positive reports, stories and testimonials. I have heard about the good work and impact of our Vice Presidents of Health and Safety. Although the Sacred Purpose movement is still in its infancy, I want to assure you that it is alive and well. I am so proud of what our chapters have accomplished!
Off to a great start
Since January, 119 of our 149 chapters and colonies have reported their positive impact:
Total number of guest speakers 218
Total number of campus-wide programs 119
Mental health 35
Non-consensual sexual activity 25
Fire/life safety 11
Total number of Health and Safety Advisors 63
Suicide Prevention Day is an important day for Theta Chi. It is a day when we join the rest of the world in raising awareness. I urge all chapters to discuss the reality of suicide and equip our members to bring this silent threat into the light.
Suicide is the second leading cause of death among college students. Each year, more than 1000 students take their own life.
Regarding suicidal thoughts, 18 percent of undergraduate students have seriously considered attempting suicide in their lifetimes. And, 1 in 10 college students have made a plan for suicide.
Those numbers are staggering. If fact, if we apply those statistics to our 8000 undergraduate Theta Chi members, it means that 1440 brothers have seriously considered suicide and 800 have made a plan for suicide.
The Theta Chi Sacred Purpose movement inspires us to be there when our brothers need us most. Before tragedy happens, we all must learn the signs of suicide and the tools for positive intervention.
Click these links to learn more about Suicide Prevention Day.
People’s stories have a way of touching our heart. At one time or another we have all experienced it. We have been moved by a story that inspires, teaches, and molds us. In this short video, the Vice President of Health and Safety from our Beta Iota chapter at Arizona does just that. He touches our heart.
He courageously reveals his life with depression. But, as you will hear, his story has a redemptive quality to it. He shares about receiving a wonderful gift from his Fraternity and his chapter brothers who helped improve his depression and elevate his life. They were there when he needed them the most.
His story reminds us that there are brothers who are in need. They may be suffering in silence, and at first glance, it may be difficult to easily recognize them. But, they are there.
In the spirit of our Sacred Purpose movement, this real story calls us higher. This story calls us to look up, look out, look beyond, and look again. What do we see? Do we see a brother in need? What are we being called to do?
That brother wants us to see him. He needs us to hear his story. And, he hopes that we will step forward and play a role in his life.