Leadership development is one of the many benefits of membership in a fraternity/sorority. Our students have many opportunities to serve in leadership roles and engage in leadership development, education, and training through their chapter, council, inter/national organization, and the Office of Greek Life. Whether they have a title or not, we want all our chapter members to act as leaders.
Greek Leaders’ Retreat
The Office of Greek Life hosts the Greek Leaders’ Retreat for all chapter presidents and council executive board members at the beginning of the fall semester. The retreat is a 2.5 day overnight experience that whisks our student leaders away from Vanderbilt’s campus. This year’s retreat will take place on August 15th-17th. Students participate in a wide variety of activities including the Leadership Practices Inventory, bystander intervention education, values exploration exercises, diversity awareness activities, goal setting for the upcoming semester, and each retreat includes an element of outdoor education. Greek Leaders’ Retreat sets the tone for the school year and is the catalyst for relationship building amongst chapter presidents and council leadership.
● Develop current and create new relationships with other Greek leaders.
● Gain an in-depth understanding of current leadership behaviors.
● Recognize areas of growth within respective chapters and councils.
● Identify ways to initiate needed growth through self and peer-analysis of current state.
● Participate in detailed goal setting.
● Enlighten others and be informed on the issues that require attention in the Greek community to ensure the fraternity and sorority experience remains relevant to the mission of Vanderbilt University through various activities and discussions.
● Gain an understanding of how individual and chapter behavior affects the entire community through various symbolic activities and facilitated group discussions.
● Assess effectiveness of current leadership teams and how to best combat the dysfunctions within their teams.
In an effort to continuously develop positional leaders in our community each council advisor uses the Leadership Performance Review (LPR) to evaluate and provide feedback for leaders in the following areas: Accountability, Integrity, Interpersonal Communication, Intellectual Curiosity, Understanding Limitations, Diversity, Civic Engagement, and Teamwork/Collaboration.
Greek LEAD begins with an overnight retreat for Greek emerging leaders. The LEAD retreat will take place on September 28 & 29. Two students, who have been recently initiated into the chapter, are chosen by each chapter to serve as LEAD representatives. This program also includes peer facilitation opportunities for five upperclass members of the Greek community who apply to serve as Greek LEAD Coordinators. Coordinators play a key role in designing retreat curriculum and facilitating small group conversations. Participants of the program take StrengthsQuest to discover their top five talent themes. Other aspects of the retreat include accountability exercises, team building, cross council education, and conversations with Office of Greek Life staff about the state of Greek Life and their role in leading positive change. As an addition to the retreat the emerging leaders will convene throughout the fall semester in order to further engage in leadership education and support each other as they work to better the Greek community.
● Identify their greatest strengths and talents.
● Demonstrate an ability to work with a variety of leadership styles by successfully completing small and large group tasks and challenges.
● Recognize current issues facing Vanderbilt’s fraternity and sorority community by examining individual and group behavior’s impact on the community.
● Identify their personal values, ethics, and definitions of integrity through a series of self-reflection activities and dialogues.
● Appraise their individual and chapter’s adherence to their organization’s ideals by relating personal and group behavior to espoused values of their organization and noting discrepancies.
● Explain the importance of holding all members accountable for their actions through symbolic activities and reflective discussions.
● Compose personal goals to impact their chapter, community, and the campus.
Executive Board Experience (EBx)
In the fall and spring the Office of Greek Life hosts the Executive Board Experience also known as the EBx for chapter executive board members. EBx will take place on August 25th from Noon-4pm. The experience begins with a keynote speech and includes two blocks of concurrent educational sessions targeted at specific officer positions. This year we have the good fortune of having CAMPUSPEAKS’ T.J. Sullivan, the author of “Motivating the Middle” and the highly respected blog, “The Hungry Student Leader” as our speaker. Session topics include new member education, recruitment & intake, programming with a purpose, faculty engagement, and public relations.
In addition to these opportunities students involved in Greek Life at Vanderbilt may serve as leaders in their chapters or in their respective governing council (IFC, Panhellenic, NPHC). There are also leadership positions available in the Greek honor society, Order of Omega. Our office requires through the Vanderbilt Fraternity & Sorority Standards that chapter members participate in leadership development opportunities offered by their inter/national organization. We strongly encourage attendance at events hosted by the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) including the Undergraduate Interfraternity Insititute.