On April 9, 2022, Phi Delta Theta returned to Vanderbilt University with the induction of the Tennessee Alpha Emerging Chapter. Originally one of the first fraternities on Vanderbilt’s campus in 1876, with 2,458 members within its ranks, Phi Delta Theta is proud to return to Vanderbilt with thirty-six outstanding student leaders motivated to bring back an organization committed to the pursuit of greatness.
Recruitment Specialist Robbie Nunes led the return of Tennessee Alpha throughout the spring 2022 semester. With Phi Delta Theta having such a deep history at Vanderbilt, Nunes arrived on campus searching for men who were ready to rebuild such a prestigious chapter. He was looking for men who challenged the status quo of stereotypical Greek life norms and would strive to help men become the greatest version of themselves in every aspect of their life. In response, he found various men across the campus who agreed with this mission; from classically trained musicians to student leaders in many organizations, the men who decided to join quickly understood that they were building up an organization with much more impact than just a club on campus.
As a reflection of their understanding of just how important their task was, the men of Tennessee Alpha united behind a great vision statement: “Phi Delta Theta at Vanderbilt University will become the greatest possible version of a fraternity by maintaining courage of character and cross-campus connections, and by creating a positive culture that is founded in strong brotherhood as we collectively pursue moral, academic, and intrapersonal excellence.”
In pursuit of this goal, the Founders of Tennessee Alpha were also supported by a fantastic community of alumni and supporters of Phi Delta Theta with the help of Eta South Province President Brad Eldrige-Smith and General Council Member-at-Large Todd Nisbet. Both men went to great lengths to raise awareness of the Tennessee Alpha expansion, and as a result, the emerging chapter is supported by an engaged group of alumni who are there every step of the way to see these young men succeed.
As the Tennessee Alpha Emerging Chapter gets acclimated to joining the Greek community at Vanderbilt, Emerging Chapter President Jack Yarnall reflected on the experience of beginning his journey with his new brothers in the emerging chapter. “I am extremely excited to have been inducted alongside these incredible Founders. Thus far, I believe we have really embodied what it means to be in Phi Delt and are already eager to work to make positive change within the organization and on campus. I am proud to see what we have done so far and am ecstatic to see our growth in the future.”
The Tennessee Alpha Emerging Chapter will have the unique opportunity to play a role in the LiveLikeLou Foundation’s $3.5 million Whole New Ballgame for ALS Research campaign. The campaign teams up with Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) to establish new, pre-clinical, and innovative science for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and funding the region’s most significant investment in ALS discovery.
Phi Delta Theta congratulates the Founders of Tennessee Alpha on their return to campus and is excited for their journey to begin toward installation as a chapter.