The news has been rampant of late, highlighting cases where personal and corporate ethics have been sadly lacking. Names such as Bernie Madoff and Enron, and even some college coaches are all too familiar as the press and the courts have dissected and handed out penalties long in years and stiff in dollars. It is a sad statement that our nation’s “leaders” are displaying behaviors that tear apart companies, valued institutions, entire industries and families.
At Phi Delta Theta, education is the cornerstone of our existence. We were founded on three basic principles: friendship, sound learning and rectitude. Sound learning encompasses all that we learn in the classroom, but also in the organizations to which we belong; be it an athletic team, a campus club, a religious institution or, of course, our fraternity. The International Fraternity of Phi Delta Theta (GHQ) has long recognized that leadership plays an enormous part in the success of a chapter. The ELI (Emerging Leaders Institute), and the PLC (Presidents Leadership Conference) are just two of the excellent programs that are available to undergraduates. Soon, with the help of the Phi Delta Theta Foundation, there will be specific course modules that will address the importance of ethics, not only in our fraternity lives, but also in the core of all that we do as responsible leaders. In fact, all educational programs provided by the fraternity will be under the umbrella of the “Academy of Leadership and Ethics.”
As we have talked with alumni to raise the funds to support the Academy the reception has been enthusiastic for the ethics training. The message has been loud and clear: our alumni members want us to be the leaders in the fraternity world by providing our Phikieas and brothers with a superb leadership foundation of sound learning not only in what we do in our lives, but how we do it. The how we conduct our lives speaks directly to the importance of a strong moral code and impeccable ethics.
Our basic principles are as relevant today as they were in 1848, perhaps even more so. It is always a good idea to reflect on your own life and ask yourself if your leadership style includes strong ethics. It should.
Phi Delta Theta Foundation