Florida Southern College LCA has seen hard times. They’ve looked financial distress in the eyes and contemplated the cost of calling it quits. Less than a year ago, members questioned why the high of becoming a member was met with the low of discovering their increasing debt. It was those hardships that defined what the chapter was going to do in the face of adversity.
In one year, Epsilon-Xi Zeta proved its dedication to the organization and pulled themselves out of massive debt to discover a surplus of $4,000. The High Zeta sat in a room with shocked smiles glued to their faces, unable to comprehend the magnitude of what they’ve accomplished. What were they to do with the extra cash? An over-the-top formal would boost morale for the upcoming year and some light renovations to the chapter house would make it more comfortable. After deliberation, the money was meant to go back to where it all started, Lambda Chi Alpha.
“It was our High Pi who brought the idea that we should donate a portion. We could have donated $300 dollars but, with how much money we had, it seemed like pocket change. After I talked to Lenny Bendo about the Mason Circle pin he had, that’s when we decided to donate the $19.09 [per member]” explains Josue Blanco (Epsilon-Xi, ’18).
The Educational Foundation offers pins to undergraduate members who donate toward the Mason Circle. Its namesake highlights our spiritual advisor, Jack Mason, and the bill of $19.09 represents the year our Fraternity was founded. The fund supports all undergraduate members by financing scholarships, Stead Leadership Seminar and High Alpha Summit.
Blanco knew that this decision was going to come with mixed emotions, but members of the chapter were thrilled to be a part of this exclusive group. The ones who joined during their, “recession” lived through the journey of becoming a high performing chapter. Senior Jack Moore (Epsilon-Xi, ’16) explains, “The drive to be pure, high and ever growing still exists even when you are struggling. We doubled the chapter and we got out of debt. Being that change has me excited.”
Although members like Justin Moriarty (Epsilon-Xi, ’18) weren’t initiated when the chapter was rebuilding, his pride for their growth flourishes. Moriarty, Moore and Blanco all explain that they felt it was their duty as a member to give back to the ones who gave them so much. If they can do it, other chapters can as well. As one of the first chapters to have every active member (including the High Pi) a part of the Mason Circle, they want to challenge their Brothers across North America to join them.
Moore explains, “I think a proponent is to push other chapters. Every Lambda Chi Alpha chapter around the globe has the strength and potential to be great. When we heard that we were going to be one of the first, the mindset was, ‘What other chapters can we get to follow us in that service that Greek Life and Lambda Chi Alpha promote?’
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