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    Greek Life Blog — fraternity

    Phi Gamma Delta Founders Day

    Phi Gamma Delta Founders Day

    Six friends at Jefferson College gathered to establish a secret society, initially called “The Delta Association” and now known as Phi Gamma Delta or FIJI. The 5 core values that the immortal 6 established still ring true today 173 years later.  With the five core values guiding every endeavor, the Brothers of FIJI are known for being high achievers so let’s take a look at some notable names to join the ranks of brothers; 

    John. W. (Johnny) Carson 

    Best known for as being the host of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson! He was not only a television host but also a comedian, writer and producer. All thing which led to his 6 Emmy’s and being inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 1987. He also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1992. An award that is bestowed to those who have made “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interest in of the United States, world peace, cultural, or other significant public endeavors”.  After joining the Navy Carson took advantage of the education opportunities by attending the University of Nebraska, where he became a member of Phi Gamma Delta. 

    Jim Gaffigan: 

    An American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and producer from Indiana. The Hoosier state native has been deemed one of the “clean” comics usually focusing on fatherhood, laziness, observations, and food in his routines. He started college at Purdue University where he joined FIJI, after just one year he transferred to Georgetown University – McDonough School of Business where obtained a degree in finance. 

    Robert Woodward

    The American investigative journalist. He started his career with The Washington Post and currently holds the title at the Post of Associate Editor. At the early start of his career, he reported on the Watergate Scandal. He continued to write for The Post after reporting on Watergate. Since he has also written 19 books on American Politics, 13 of those books hit the best sellers list. 

    Seth Meyers

    The form SNL cast member and writer is known as an American Comedian, writer, producer and television host. Most recently known for being the host of Late Night with Seth Meyers, the late-night talk show on NBC. The Northwestern graduate was has gone on to deliver the commencement address at the universities 2016 graduation. His time at Northwestern is also what led him to join FIIJI. 


    Charles E. Rushmore

    An American attorney and businessman, whom the Mount Rushmore is name after. How the monument came to be named after Charles is subject to interpretation, however the United States Board of Geographic Name officially recognized in June 1930. Just 5 years after he made a sizable donation towards the sculpture. FIJI wasn’t the only fraternal organization he was a part of, he was also a Freemason. 

    Philip Knight  

    As of 2020 Knight was ranked the 26th richest person in the world. The co-founder and chairman emeritus of Nike, Inc. and was previously chairman and CEO of the company. He graduated from the University of Oregon and Stanford Graduate School of Business. While at Oregon he ran track under Bill Bowerman, whom he co-founded Nike with.  He was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame for his Special Contribution to Sports in Oregon. He has also been inducted into Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, as a contributor. He was recognized by the hall, by being the driving force behind Nike’s major financial support of U.S Basketball and its Players. 

    Jack Nicklaus

    “The Golden Bear”, is a retired American Professional Golfer. He is widely considered one of the greatest golfers of all time. Winning 117 professional tournaments in his career. He took up golf at age 10 scoring a 51 at Scioto Country Club in the first 9 holes he had ever played. He was coached by Jack Grout, a pro who also a coach to other great golfers. While he attended Ohio State University, where he joined FIJI he won the U.S Amateur twice and an NCAA Championship. He started his professional career in 1961 on the PGA Tour. He set a record for lowest final round score in the PGA Championship with just a 64. In 1965 and 1966 he became the winner of The Masters and became the tournament’s first back to back winner and the youngest two time and three time winner. When he won the 1971 PGA Championship, he became the first golfer to win all four majors twice. Since hanging up the clubs on his professional career Nicklaus, is now the head of the world’s largest golf course design companies. 


    Roger Penske  

    The American businessman & entrepreneur involved in professional auto racing and a retire auto racing driver. Penske is probably most famous for his ownership of Team Penske, DJR Team Penske, the Penske Corporation, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and IndyCar. He was name Sports Illustrated “sports car club of America driver of the year of 1961”. After retiring from his own driving career, he has gone on to create one of the most successful teams in NASCAR and the IndyCar series. He is considering the most successful owner in the Indianapolis 500 with 18 victories. In 2019 he became the owner of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, purchasing the 2.5 mile course from the Hulman Family. 

    Bobby Rahal

    The form Racecar Driver and Racing team owner, he has won 1 personal Indy 500 as a driver and as a team owner has won 2 additional Indy 500’s. He attended college at Denison University, where he joined the ranks of FIJI’s brothers. After retiring as a driver, Rahal held many managerial positions with the Jaguar Formula 1 team and was also an interim president of the CART series. 


    Jack Swigert 

    The University of Colorado graduate with a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering and then later earning his master’s in aerospace engineering went on to being a NASA Astronaut, test pilot, mechanical engineer and aerospace engineer. He was one of three astronauts abroad the Apollo 13 Moon Mission launched April 11th, 1970. He is the first to announce the famous words “Houston, we’ve had a problem here”. After his time at NASA he became an executive director of the Committee on Science and Astronautics.  In 1970 after his Apollo 13 mission, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Nixon. 

    Brian Griese

    This former NFL quarterback started his college football career by walking on to the team at the University Michigan. After turning down two scholarships at Purdue and Kentucky. He joined FIJI while obtaining his Bachelor’s degree in an individualized concertation at Michigan.  He started his NLF career during the 1998 NFL Draft. He was began his career with the Denver Broncos, as the third string quarterback. After leaving the NFL 2009 he shifted gears and took on the world of Broadcasting with ESPN covering college football until 2020.  He took his seat in the Monday Night Football booth in 2020. 

    E.B White  

    The American writer most known for his titles Stuart Little or Charlotte’s Web joined FIJI while he attended Cornell University. While at Cornell he worked as an editor of The Cornell Daily Sun. FIJI wasn’t the only organization White joined while at Cornell, he also was a member of Alep Samach and Quill and Dagger societies. After graduating he worked for the United Press and The American Legion News Services. He got his first article published in The New Yorker in 1925, then joined the staff in 1927. In 1953 he won a Newbery Medal for Charlotte’s Web. 

    FIJI has grown from the “immortal six” to over 170,000 lifetime initiates, 8,5000 undergraduate members, and 142 chapters and colonies across the U.S and Canada. With the mission stating that it “exists to promote lifelong friendship, to reaffirm high ethical standards & values, and to foster personal development in the pursuit of excellence” it is no surprise that so many are eager to join the brotherhood that will be part of their lives even after their last day on campus. 

    Life's Better in Sewn on Letters

    Life's Better in Sewn on Letters

    Regardless of your familiarity with Greek organizations, sewn on letters are a well-known staple to the culture of fraternities and sororities. They come in all shapes and sizes, from hoodies to tees, bags to blankets. It's a permanent fixture to Greek life and at Campus Classics, combined with our experience in the market and our inside-out knowledge of embroidery, we strive to make our sewn on letters the best in the business.

    For both fraternities and sororities, sewn on letters have more meaning beyond representing their group; these letters become an heirloom, passed off from one generation to the next. They’re a tangible legacy and the value placed on sewn on letters encompasses the quality of the products themselves but also the Greek organization as a whole. 

    On today’s campus, sewn on letters have become more than just a piece of apparel. Sewn on letters are an effective method of PR for a Greek organization. The people who wear their letters represent the character and culture of the organization. So not only does the quality of your Greek organization’s sewn on letters reflect the quality of your chapter, but pledges work hard to earn the right to wear their letters and it’s important to get your new initiates the best quality to reward them!

    So, what makes Campus Classics’ sewn on letters different from the rest? Well, we’re glad you asked! 

    At Campus Classics, we’ve been in the Greek game since 1989 and have been doing sewn on letters since day 1. We understand that sewn on letters give each Greek member a sense of pride in their organization and we take great care to make ours the best. We have a top notch embroidery team who’ve personally been creating products for over 20 years and know exactly what you expect when you order from Campus Classics. 

    We have a wide collection of sewn on letter items so you’re sure to find what you want in our collections. From our best selling black sewn on hoodies to fun items like our stars & stripes sewn on tee, there’s a lot to love. 

    What about you? What do you love about your sewn on letters? Any items you’re excited to see us offer in the future? Drop us a line in the comments or on our contact form to let us know!



    Life after Greek Life

    Life after Greek Life

    Guest Blogger: Cory Martin

    2013-2017 - TKE Headquarters, Regional Director 
    2017-Present - Executive Director, Indiana State Police Alliance 
    2019-Present - Director of Association Management/Lobbyist, The Corydon Group



    When I arrived on campus, I was seeking an opportunity to meet new people and get involved. I did not want to just commute to campus and commute back home. Although I lived off-campus, I still wanted to have a traditional college experience. A few weeks into the semester, IUPUI had events fair and all student organizations participated. I met dozens of groups and started attending their events. The one that made the biggest impact was TKE. I only knew of fraternities from what I had seen in movies. I didn't have any expectations or knowledge of the group. I just met them and fell in love with the group and what the organization stood for. 

    I immediately jumped in and got involved. I took advantage of the many leadership opportunities and began seeking further development through their programs and conferences. By graduation, I had taken advantage of multiple conferences, dozens of leadership positions, and a pathway into an alumni base that is one of the most robust in the country. TKE fundamentally shaped the direction of my career. I was able to test entrepreneurship skills and apply them in real-world scenarios using the fraternity as my platform. I would not be in Association Management today without the experiences I learned from TKE.

    To see what Cory is up to since his time at IUPUI and time spent at TKE HQ follow him on instagram @corymart

    Want to shop Alumni Gear? Check out some of our favorites:

    Theta Chi's Founders Day

    Theta Chi's Founders Day

    Since 1856, more than 1850,00 members have joined the brotherhood that was founded on friendship at Norwich University. Since being founded by Norton Freeman and Arthur Chase over 165 years ago, Theta Chis is one of the oldest men’s college fraternities in the United States. A fraternity with rich early history surviving not only the war between the states, but also a massive fire that destroyed the Norwich Campus. So let’s take a look at some of the most notable Theta Chi Resolute Men. 

    Steven Spielberg – First applying to film school at University of Southern California, but being rejected due to mediocre grades, Spielberg pursued other college options. After being accepted into Cal State University in Long Beach, Spielberg became a member of the Zeta Epsilon chapter. It was in 1968 that he got his first break with Universal to direct and write a short film. He impressed Sidney Sheinberg, who offered him a 7-year contract for directing. He was named Life Magazines most influential person of his generation. He was one of Time's 100 Most Important People of the Century. He has won 3 Academy Awards, he’s received 7 nominations for best Director and won twice. He was also the recipient of the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1995. The list of accolades for Spielberg could go on, making him one of the most noteworthy Theta Chis.

    Matt Gallagher – An American Author, former U.S Army captain & veteran of the Iraq War. He attended Wake Forest University where he joined the Army ROTC the week before September 11th. While at Wake Forest he became a member of Theta Chi and served as the sports editor of the Old Gold & Black.  He finished school with a Bachelor of Art Degree. He became a 2nd Lieutenant Armor Branch. During his deployment he began writing a military blog Kaboom: A Soldier’s War Journal. After his time in the service, he became a novelist writing his debut novel Youngblood

    Lee Iacocca – The Former Chairman of Chrysler and President of Ford Iacocca, a well-known American Automobile executive. He’s most well-known for developing the Ford Mustang or Ford Pinot cars during his time spent at Ford. He majored in Industrial engineering while at Lehigh University where he became an alumnus of Theta Chi. He was an advocate for “Nourish the Children”. Nourish the Children is an organization using business principles to address the problem of childhood hunger in sustainable form. He also had a hand in fundraising to allow Lehigh University to adapt vacant buildings that today house the College of Education and the Biology & Chemical Engineering Departments.  

    Nick Mileti – Retired lawyer, American author, sports entrepreneur and former sport franchise owner. He is the founder of the Cleveland Cavaliers and owner of Cleveland Indians. He spent his university years at Bowling Green State University where he became a Theta Chi. The BGSU Alumni Center has now been named in his honor. 

    Fran Striker – Most well-known for creating “The Lone Ranger” and “The Green Hornet”! He was not only a comic writer but also a writer for many radio shows. He attended school at the University of Buffalo, where he proudly became a member of Theta Chi. Before graduating he dropped out of university and spent time with the New York City amateur theatrical company, before his writing career took off.

    Sean McManus – The Duke Graduate is a well known television executive. He started his career in television with ABC after graduation. He may be most known for spearheading the charge at CBS Corporation efforts in re-acquiring the broadcast rights for the NFL. He currently services as the President of CBS News & CBS Sports. He oversees CBS Sports coverage of the NFL, including on air talent, production, and advertising and promotion. 

    Anton “Tony” Hulman  - The man who purchased the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) and brought racing back to the track after a 4 year hiatus following World War II. He became a Theta Chi during his time spent at Indiana State University. An Indiana native, Hulman is to this day still known for his philanthropy and commitment to higher education. He had the honor of being inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America in 1991. He is also well known for preferring to do his IMS deal with the “handshake deals” method instead of a contract. He always said that he wasn’t doing the deal for the money but to create the best racing experience possible. 

    With such tenacity at the core of Theta Chi’s DNA, it isn’t hard to see why there are 143 chapters and colonies across North America. With the principles of friendship, leadership, and standing up for what is right we understand why so many strive to wear Theta Chi red and white! From all of us here at Campus Classics, Happy Founders day Theta Chi. Here is to another 165+ years of tradition and legacy! 

    Sigma Alpha Epsilon Founder's Day

    Sigma Alpha Epsilon Founder's Day

    It was Sunday March 9th, 1856 at the University of Alabama where 8 friends came together with a mission to create a legacy that we now know as Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE). They had the goal of creating a brotherhood that would strive to be the highest standard of friendship, scholarship, leadership and service throughout the lives of the brothers. These values still shine true in all that SAE stands for as much as they did in 1856. They have provided young men a community, guidance, culture, and the traits of becoming a true gentleman. So, let’s take a look at some of the most notable faces to join the SAE brotherhood. 

    Sam Elliott – After relocating to Los Angeles, he began studying acting at Cal State Los Angeles where he became a proud SAE. He also joined the California Air National Guard, 146th Airlift Wing while studying acting at Cal State. Most famously known for his roles in westerns and his distinct mustache, Elliot is a household name, starring recently on the Netflix Original “The Ranch”.

    William Faulkner – The 1949 Nobel Prize winner for Literature, joined SAE during his time spent at the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss.). One of the most famous names in literature with a list of accolades such as his 2 Pulitzer Prizes and National Book Awards. The 3 semesters he spent at Ole Miss. resulted in the start of some of his poetry being published in the campus publication.

     Phil Jackson –  Being recruited to the University of North Dakota set Jackson on the path to joining SAE. After college Jackson was a 2nd round draft to the New York Knicks. After his career in the NBA, he didn’t leave basketball behind; he took on coaching for the CBA and BSN leagues. He eventually made his way back to the NBA when he became the head coach of the Chicago Bulls from 1987-1998. During his 9 years leading the Bulls, he won 6 championships, 3 of which were in a row! He eventually became the Head Coach of the LA Lakers, and in 2011, hung up his coaching shoes and didn’t return back to the world of the NBA until 2014, this time as the President of the New York Knicks.

     Ed McCaffery – This NFL wide receiver joined SAE while attending and playing football at Stanford University. While at Stanford he was named All-American his Senior year, which turned into much bigger accolades like the 3 Superbowl rings he proudly received in his professional career. With his playing years behind him, McCaffery is the current coach of the Northern Colorado University Football team.

    William McKinley – The 25th President of the United States, is among some of the most notable brothers. After graduating from Poland Seminary, McKinley became an honorary Sigma Alpha Epsilon member at Allegheny College and went on to play a major role in some key events in American history.

    David Spade – Well known stand-up comedian and American Actor, Spade got his start in the limelight on Saturday Night Live, which became the jumping off point for his successful television and big screen career. He joined SAE while attending Arizona State University.

    Byron Wilson - We can’t go without mentioning our personal favorite SAE Alum here at Campus Classics! Here are a few words from our founder; “I actually pledged SAE in the Spring of my senior year in high school—with 70% of the DePauw University enrollment affiliated and active in Greek Life recruitment on campus was competitive.  Watching my mom slowly lose her battle to breast cancer that first semester really affected my grades and focus.  Yet, it was the men of SAE and especially my fellow pledge-class brothers that rallied around and supported me after her passing just a few weeks into the second semester of that freshman year. Although I missed being initiated with all of them only weeks after her funeral--having the opportunity to be initiated in August later that summer at The Levere Memorial Temple in 1982 as an Honor Initiate was very impacting. The initiation ritual was performed completely by memory, led by the Supreme Council and further influenced my love for the fraternity and especially the sanctity, meaning and importance of the ritual. Eventually starting a small business [Campus Classics] four years after graduation in 1989 focusing on the Greek market was a direct result of my undergraduate experience at Indiana Delta! Indirectly, attending Leadership School’s for twenty+ consecutive years and extending Phi Alpha discounts to fellow brothers as they shopped the SAE licensed sportswear and gift items was a simple way to ‘give back’. My office and man-cave at home each have many SAE items that bring back memories of those special years!

    With such noteworthy members as these it is easy to see how there are over 340,000 initiates, 206,000 living alumni, 215 groups, and 12,000+ active members of Sigma Alpha Epsilon. It isn’t surprising to see why so many have their hearts set on being able to wear the SAE royal purple and old gold! From all of us at Campus Classics, Happy Founders Day Sigma Alpha Epsilon, here’s to another 165 years of brotherhood!