Written by Daniel Puentes (FIU, ’13), Young Alumnus Consul to the Octagon
Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) is a growing focus in fraternity life, with Greek organizations working around the clock to examine their infrastructures and develop changes to improve the climate for male fratres from different identities. Sigma Alpha Mu has initiated this work with the activation of a IDEA task force, which began meeting in July 2020. The task force comprises of alumni volunteers, staff members and friends of Sammy, including the author of this article. The task force has tackled several projects that align with the ΣAM 2030 plan through our biweekly meetings.
One of the things we wanted to understand as a task force was the opinion of our fellow undergraduate fratres. Together, we generated a survey that was developed and dispersed via email to every active chapter member. With help from the Undergraduate Advisory Committee, our task force collected 129 anonymous responses to help inform our discussions. We also drafted an anti-bigotry policy, adopted by the Octagon this past January 18, 2021, and shared it with the international ΣAM community. The policy can be found online as well and aligns with our Trans-Inclusive Policy. The policy “reaffirms the commitment made to stride towards a future, free of discrimination and bigotry” when undergraduates choose to join our fraternity.
The work is not done yet. Our committee has continued to have in-depth discussions about topics, including identifying IDEA-based learning outcomes to incorporate in our TrueMDH candidate education program. We, as an organization, recognize the importance of IDEA in our infrastructure. Inclusive and equitable environments provide a thriving space for a diverse set of young men to be successful and supportive of each other. We appreciate the time and energy our task force members have brought to the table. Alumni interested in joining these critical conversations are encouraged to reach out to International Headquarters.
Get involved at sam.org/volunteer and learn more about the IDEA committee.
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