The Laurel Wreath Award is presented to individuals or groups in recognition of their unique programs, community outreach, or influence within the fraternal world.
Interested in honoring a program or process in 2020? Nominations are now open!
Congratulations to the 2019 Laurel Wreath Award recipients! Browse below to learn more about each honoree.
STATEHOUSE CHAPLAIN SUPPORT INITIATIVE
ALPHA TAU OMEGA
Alpha Tau Omega is working to reinforce to state officials the idea that fraternities actively seek to help build stronger civic communities. ATO has partnered with an organization, Public Servants Prayer, that purchases Bibles for every newly elected or appointed official in Indiana, covering the cost of personalized books for almost 60 new legislators in the past year. As an organization founded on Christian values, ATO’s program helps the fraternity be more intentional in building positive local relationships in its home community of Indianapolis while committing to its founding values. This initiative leads to stronger advocacy opportunities with lawmakers and insights into the power of interfraternalism.
EDUCATIONAL POSTER SERIES
ALPHA CHI OMEGA, PI KAPPA PHI, SIGMA NU, ZETA TAU ALPHA
Alpha Chi Omega, Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Nu and Zeta Tau Alpha partnered to create an ongoing series of educational posters addressing a myriad of health and safety topics concerning students such as hazing, alcohol abuse, mental health and sexual misconduct. Copies of the posters and discussion guides are mailed to fraternity/sorority life offices across North America as well as to every chapter of the sponsoring organizations. Downloadable resources are available online. The relevant messaging of these posters provides educators a helpful point of entry for important health and safety conversations.
KAPPA DELTA RHO
Kappa Delta Rho modernized its member development program, Legion, deliberately maintaining futuristic and strategic thinking to meet today’s college student’s educational needs in innovative, yet technical avenues. The total project includes instructional design on various topics, 17 online modules and supplemental training materials for both participants and facilitators. Four stages of the Legion program allow for customized education throughout each member’s undergraduate experience. This pioneering curriculum is at the forefront of industry trends in organizational development.
SERVICE IMMERSION TRIPS
PHI KAPPA PSI
Phi Kappa Psi’s service immersion program is unique because of its holistic approach to providing students the opportunity to address poverty and its effects in local communities. The goal is to provide participants with the tools to become change agents in poverty awareness on their campuses and in their personal lives while building a life-changing experience for each man. The two initial trips in spring 2019 — to Denver and Minneapolis — saw more than 50 applicants for 30 spots. During the trip, the group volunteered at four to six nonprofits throughout the week and enjoyed some time to explore the host city. Students responded well to this powerful brotherhood bonding experience that pushed them out of their comfort zones, challenged their preconceptions about poverty and its causes, taught them how to address major civic problems and helped them build lasting relationships with brothers.
Sigma Chi partnered with the Jed Foundation to provide enhanced mental health and suicide prevention awareness education. Strong Arms is designed to “end the silence” for individuals who suffer alone, providing a resource to fill in the gaps in university mental health services and train brothers to help themselves and others. The programming is delivered through an online learning platform and consists of modules on topics including the importance of self, dealing with a crisis, seeking help and encountering challenges. Students also have access to a suicide prevention hotline. With groundbreaking scope and broad impact, Strong Arms gives fraternity men the tools to identify, support and seek help for mental health issues.
BALANCED MAN PROGRAM APP
SIGMA PHI EPSILON
Sigma Phi Epsilon took its fraternity development experience to a new level with a mobile and desktop application that facilitates the continuous member experience. The Balanced Man Program, which seeks to address significant mental health and self-esteem issues caused by unhealthy relationships and negative college experiences, now has a user-friendly technology tool to enhance accountability to the program and help Sigma Phi Epsilon measure involvement and outcomes. Starting its second year, nearly 90% of brothers are using the app. More than 11,500 members have created customized development plans tailored to their personal and professional goals. The app has been transformational in holding members accountable and preparing men for life after college.