Thursday, September 14, 2006

Standing at a crossroads

Our Opinon: The newly re-established Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity has the potential to be successful and bring more prestige and interest to Greek Life -- or in failure, detract more from the organization than its previous members already have.

It is seldom that life gives second chances.Sigma Phi Epsilon's N.C. State chapter should consider the second chance it has been given as a blessing after their charter was terminated two years ago. After incidents of hazing and failing to provide a quality experience to its members, our campus' chapter of the nation's largest fraternity was erased from Greek Life -- until this year.

The organization now stands at a crossroads. It can either learn from the past failures of the organization and bring honor back to the chapter or fail to learn and find themselves in similar trouble down the road.

Since 1905, the fraternity has had a home at NCSU, making it one of the oldest Greek organizations to date. SigEp represents tradition -- a tradition that has been tainted -- but has the potential to be restored.

The fraternity is also an important representative for Greek Life as a whole; it is perched to either bring success or failure to the organization. Currently there are plans for Greek Court Development, which is coming off of a few years of failed or reprimanded fraternities in the past. It would be great to see SigEp bring some good press back to Greek Life.

However, the second chance SigEp has been given is not just about its particular organization; it represents second chances for all campus organizations. The group is starting off this year with an automatic handicap based on their previous violations, but hopefully can eliminate any shroud of suspicion that the group will repeat the practices that did it in before.

Everyone on campus should be paying attention to what type of legacy and impact the new SigEp establishes for its national chapter and for Greek Life at NCSU. It is the people that establish what an organization will be -- not the organization's past failures. If the new leaders of SigEp stick to the promises and goals that have gotten them this far, then they are in the position to negate past sins and essentially establish an entirely new fraternity.

While SigEp was given a second opportunity at providing a quality experience for its members, there is always the temptation for the group to return to the problems that plagued the former chapter.

As Orlando A. Battista once said, "Temptations, unlike opportunities, will always give you many second chances.

"Here's to hoping that the only thing the new SigEp is tempted to do is bring prestige and honor back to the chapter, Greek Life and the national organization's rich history