By Victoria Mescall
A group of Sacred Heart University students are in contact with the executive headquarters of the co-educational service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega (APO), in an attempt to start a chapter of this fraternity on campus in the incoming year.
Alpha Phi Omega is a fraternal organization founded on the principles of leadership, friendship and service, according to the fraternity’s official website, APO.org.
The Alpha Phi Omega Fraternity has more than 25,000 active brothers at more than 360 colleges around the country.
Through brotherhood development and community outreach, the organization strives to better the lives of its members and the lives of those in the community it serves.
“Our goal by establishing APO is to bring even more opportunities to campus, specifically community service based,” said sophomore Megan Keane, a possible future member of this chapter. “We want to bring more SHU students together and create ties between students who may have never been able to meet anywhere else.”
Sacred Heart is currently home to seven social sororities, and six social fraternities, as well as numerous professional societies, including business and criminal justice, and honorary organizations. The addition of a service based fraternal organization will add to Sacred Heart’s repertoire of service organizations.
This new fraternity that is proposed for colonization should align with the mission and efforts of the office of Volunteer Programs and Service Learning at Sacred Heart.
The purpose of Alpha Phi Omega is to assemble college men in the fellowship of the scout oath and law, to develop friendship and to promote service to humanity. According to APO.org, “APO is the single most represented intercollegiate service organization in the United States.”
Community service is a core value of Sacred Heart.
“We want to bring APO to Sacred Heart because we feel it would be a great way to bring people together and create friendships through service’” said sophomore Joseph Leo, another potential chartering member. “This fraternity will allow us to create new service opportunities and new ways for students on campus to get involved. We are currently an interest group on campus going through the national requirements and we are hoping to charter to start the 2017 fall semester,” said Leo.
Many New England campuses are home to APO chapters including, the University of Connecticut, the University of New Hampshire, and the University of Vermont.
“In order to become an official chapter we need to meet specific requirements. One being that we have to have the right numbers of people so basically we need to meet a quota,” said Keane.
In the 2015-16 State of the University address, Dr. Petillo stated that in the past year, the Sacred Heart University community has self-reported more than 100,000 hours of service to our neighbors and community.
Adding a community service fraternity to the extensive list of service opportunities, organizations and clubs offered through Sacred Heart’s office of Volunteer Programs should continue to expand the outreach of service.
“I think it is a great way to be able to incorporate service on the Sacred Heart campus,” said alumna and Graduate Assistant, Jillian Gray. “As a Graduate Assistant in the Volunteer Programs and Service Learning Office, I can help to create a liaison between the campus chapter and our various community partners.”
If you’re interested in getting involved with Alpha Phi Omega please contact Megan Keane, Joseph Leo, or Brendan Capuano through the office of Volunteer Programs.