I recently had the opportunity to interview James Plante, the President of the Beta Fraternity, about his experiences with the fraternity. The following is what transpired:
What do you enjoy most about your fraternity?
I know it sounds cliché, but just the guys that join the group. When I first joined the Betas I always thought that we had to recruit to get good guys to join the group. If I have learned anything it is that the best guys we get are the ones who know what they are looking for and find it in our group. The ability to walk up and down a hall of 30 guys and walk-in to any of their rooms just to talk about anything (serious or not) is something I will always cherish.
What is your greatest memory of being a Beta?
I had the honor of serving as president of the Betas this past calendar year. This was one of the best experiences, and greatest learning experiences, probably of my life. This past year we fulfilled our goal of raising $25,000 for our fraternity scholarship that goes to one member of the fraternity. This fall we were actually able to reach $42,000. This has been my greatest memory of being a Beta. I know all the hard work that went into the vision for the scholarship and raising the money over the past 3 years.
Your Fraternity puts on a lot of events, do you have a favorite?
Easy. Monster Mash. I would argue it is one of the best dances on campus and I think others would agree.
Does your fraternity support a specific charity or organization through fundraisers?
From Monster Mash we actually raise close to $1,000 every year for the Alpha Omega crisis pregnancy center in Slippery Rock, Pa, which provides women with the resources necessary to ensure a safe delivery and life for their baby.
Can you tell me a little about your faculty advisor and what he means to the Betas?
Anyone who knows Professor Tim Sweet knows the kind of guy he is. He became our advisor my sophomore year and has been a tremendous help with our fraternity. With him leading our group we have been able to fulfill our goal of raising $25,000 for our scholarship.
Can you speak to the friendships you’ve made as a member of the Betas that you might not have made otherwise?
I have made some of the best friends in my life from my fraternity. We are each very different but I know we will be friends for life. In fact, 4 of my 6 groomsmen in my wedding next year are guys I pledged with 3 years ago.