Leadership, Friendship, and Service – the driving principles of Alpha Phi Omega. Then there is the Scout Law; Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent – characteristics that seem obvious to live by but sometimes get missed. As joining members, we set an oath in loyalty and service that we would “do our best to exemplify the principles and to advance the organization of Alpha Phi Omega”, all for “my fraternity, for my college, for the youth of all nations, for my community and for any nation”. So, quickly reflect on that. Now ask yourself, are you or those around you doing your best?
Yes, we have this list of requirements and awards for different achievement, but I encourage you to not chase after any of that. Instead, chase after that feeling you get when you learn something new that you can share with others, or when a friend in need comes to you, or when people you are out in the community serving, thanks you. I promise you, that feeling is where all the reward comes from.
Through your remaining time in Alpha Phi Omega and beyond, find that leadership event that you connect with, or need. Find that friendship that makes you a better person, that keeps you involved. Find that service event that you can’t seem to miss a week of, an event that leaves you impacting the lives of those in your community. Always remember that it is not in the requirements you complete that bring an impact, but it is the experience that allows you to be impacted so greatly that you take what you learned and apply it elsewhere.
As we started the walk-a-thon last year, it was driven off two things – a passion and a burden. From the time I joined Alpha Phi Omega, I was passionate about leadership and the opportunities presented to impact those around me. As my burden, my heart was heavy for the community just beyond the walls of UK, those who were homeless. Combining the two, I knew our organization had the power to make a change, so we came up with the idea of Going Beyond. Simply encouraging brothers to do more, and to go beyond the requirements set to help a part of the community in need. Overall, we raised $2000 and were able to give nearly $1000 of that plus 200 sandwiches to a local homeless shelter, The Hope Center.
So, as you start this new year, really think about your passion, think about how you can further this organization, yourself, and those around you. One small idea as simple as Going Beyond can get picked up and ignite throughout the chapter, and hopefully further.
Our organization is more than just LFS and the Scout Law. These are things we should commit to showing day after day, action after action. It is my only hope that Alpha Phi Omega builds to truly be an organization that makes a greater impact, one that goes beyond the walls of campus and our community, one that floods this organization and causes people to truly reflect on their passions and burdens, one that leads others to, in Leadership, Friendship, and Service – Go Beyond.
Written by Jeff Akers