On Saturday, April 29 in South Orange, New Jersey, a group of motivated undergraduates and excited alumni gathered at Seton Hall University to officially recognize the New Jersey Gamma Colony. Sixty six men were welcomed into the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity in the presence of friends, families, and fellow Phis from the area. Those in attendance gathered in the Chancellor’s Suite of the University Center for the official colonization ceremony, led by New Jersey Alpha CAB Chairman Ed Zindell (Rutgers ’95) in place of Province President Fred Reimer (Gettysburg ’07). In attendance were Colony Advisory Board (CAB) Chairman Bill Ecker (Oklahoma State ’85), Faculty Advisor Tom Conte, New York Lambda (St. John’s) Phis and several local Phi Delta Theta alumni.
The colonization ceremony brings great joy to Leadership Consultants Alex Atkinson (MWSU ’16) and BJ Henderson (Wisconsin ’16) as they worked to recruit and provide organizational guidance to the men of the colony. They have no doubt that the leaders of New Jersey Gamma will enable the colony to become one of the best Greek organizations on campus in the near future.
During the ceremony, numerous individuals provided words of encouragement to the colony. Ecker stated that he is “very impressed by the numbers and quality of the group” and continued to express his interest to give back to the Fraternity that has positively influenced his life. Colony President Moe Jaman thanked the colony for putting their “faith and trust in [him] to lead.” Additionally, he added that he is “proud to be a part of this growing brotherhood, and cannot explain the excitement [he] tries to bottle every day for the memories [they] will share.” Finally, Alex Atkinson mentioned how men like those in the New Jersey Gamma Colony make their jobs as Leadership Consultants easy and enjoyable. In addition, he stated that, “We give up several things to travel the country and create new groups, but we do it because we are very passionate about our work and the men whom we recruit and build relationships.”
Throughout the recruitment process, Phi Delta Theta’s expansion team searched for individuals who will embrace the Phi Delta Theta values. They were able to find a large group of high caliber men who are leaders at Seton Hall University. The colony members come from different backgrounds and each has varying majors and interests, but they are all willing to put forth the time and effort to bring Phi Delta Theta to SHU. The colony currently has a 3.4 GPA. During their short time as a Phi Delta Theta interest group, the members were able to raise $2,565 for Relay for Life on campus.
There were several individuals who provided great assistance during the development of the colony. A special thank you is in order for the New Jersey Gamma Colony Advisory Board, Seton Hall University, specifically Michael Davis (Assistant Director of Leadership Development-Greek Liaison), and the alumni in the area who have helped develop this group.
April 29, 2017 is a date that these New Jersey Gamma Colony men will always remember as they begin their journey with Phi Delta Theta. It will also be a date to remember as the Fraternity adds another page to its rich history.