update on the chapter and COVID

Hi everyone. I know it’s been a long time since you’ve heard from the Alumni Board, and I wanted to fill you in on what we’ve been doing to try to prepare for whatever comes next regarding COVID-19 and other developments.

The College completed its spring semester in early May under a remote learning environment. There were no reported cases of coronavirus on campus, and that includes the members of Phi Kappa Sigma. Thankfully, I have not heard of any cases among family members of the undergrad brothers.

A few Chapter House residents remained in the house after the end of classes, since they felt doing so was less of a health risk for themselves and their families than returning home. The Alumni Corp. supported them in this decision, and most of these residents have since returned home, with two planning to stay in the house for most of the summer.

The Alumni Corp. is currently planning for various scenarios. As I write this, we don’t yet know whether we will have any brothers living in the Chapter House in the fall, or the spring, or whether the College may allow a limited number of students to live there.

Rent represents more than 80% of our operating income each year. We currently have a good cash position, but that status won’t hold if we’re not able to collect any rent, or only a limited amount. It’s extremely unlikely that we will receive any financial assistance from National, the College, the City, or our insurance carrier.

With the onset of the global pandemic, we were not able to conduct Phoneathon this year. We know that with unprecedented health concerns, historic unemployment rates, and a confluence of other social issues demanding your attention, this is not the best time to ask for contributions, but the fact is that we need the help of our alumni now more than ever.

If there are no in-person classes in the fall, we need to prepare for a shortfall in rental income of $36,000 for the fall—and possibly the same number for the spring. We’re therefore setting a fundraising goal of $20,000 to help mitigate these losses.

As always, we ask only for whatever you’re able to give, and simply that you contribute something. Particularly this year, every contribution is important! You’ll receive a follow-up email in the next few weeks with details on how to send contributions. Alternatively, just click on the PayPal link on the home page of this site to send your contribution.

Without overdramatizing things, you, as a Zeta Chapter alumnus, hold the future of our Fraternity in your hands. The coming months will determine whether we’re able to keep the Chapter House running, and to make the fraternity experience available for another generation of Phi Kaps.