Thursday, February 15, 2007

BMP vs Traditional Chapters - An Old Story

Posted by Euripedes for Dr. St. John

The posting below was sent to the then executive director as a solution to the two track system that Sig Ep developed. My comments were the result of an article that I wrote and published in 1987 regarding the four year programming concept that was immediately copied by Pi Kappa Alpha in their national publication. Frank Ruck and I talked extensively about the concept. He added the "nuts and berries" as we called the concepts from the men's movement and the result was the Balanced Man Project which became the Balanced Man Program we have today.

From: RStjohn@UTNet.UToledo.Edu
Sent: Tuesday, March 14, 2000 4:07 PM
To: vauclain@sigephq.org
Subject: BMP vs Traditional

Jacques,
Several years ago I suggested that the fraternity was like two trains on separate tracks heading for the same station. I have strong feelings about the good in the BMP and strong feelings about what we are now calling traditional chapters and quality programming. Now it appears we are on crossed tracks heading for collision.

I was the person in 1987 that began the four year programming concept for Sig Ep. I researched several other major fraternities and found that none of them had any such quality programming. I developed that programming for Sig Ep [and presented it at several Regional Leadership Academies (now Carlson's)].

I was the district governor assigned to the strategic programming committee at the conclave that recommended going forward with the concept that Frank Ruck had presented, and I was in the discussion at the retreat with the board where Bill Tragos and I ferreted out the idea of the Balanced Man in front of the board and selected participants. I was also one of the five people who were asked to react to the original BMP and stated where I thought it would have implementation problems.

All that to say, that I have walked the road to where we are now.The communication on SigEpnet is showing clearly how divided we are as a group. If there is any way that I can be of service to you to end this debacle before we self-destruct, please let me know. I am sorry to use so many "I's" in the communication because it is not my desire to add to Rick St. John's laurels. I am here to serve if wanted, if needed, if you feel I can help to end the debate.

Rick St. John

As I said then and have continued to say now, we easily could be speaking the same language and terminology if we had begun to call the stages of development in traditional chapters - Sigma Phase, Phi Phase, Epsilon Phase, Neophite Phase. By now we would have assimiliated our programming so that, in essence, we would not still be a two program operation.

Richard St. John