by Juliana Walter
Fraternity and Sorority Life (FSL) at The University of Tampa is expanding this semester with the addition of the sorority chapter, Delta Phi Epsilon, also known as DPhiE.
With alumnae from the surrounding area and the founding members at UT, Delta Phi Epsilon has finished formal recruitment and is in the process of a petition to charter. This entails gaining full permission from FSL to become an official sorority at UT. Although the chapter is just beginning at UT, the sorority has many plans to expand this year.
During their formal recruitment, a little over 80 members pledged to DPhiE last week. The sorority was excited by these numbers and expects more growth in the spring for informal recruitment.
Taylor Jenkins, a junior communication major, is a member of DPhiE. She is invested in helping the sorority grow around UT.
“I think one of the most exciting challenges is having 80 girls, that are all unique, work together and come together,” said Jenkins.
The executive board is currently a group of alumnae from other DPhiE chapters across the country. These women have agreed to help guide and start the chapter as the sorority continues to get their feet on the ground. From the headquarters of DPhiE, one leader is sent to help organize the chapter for the rest of this school year.
Ryan Burds, assistant director of FSL at UT, has helped to bring DPhiE to campus, as well as fraternity, Chi Phi. One of FSL’s goals this year was to expand Greek Life. With a huge spike in the number of students joining UT’s Greek Life, more chapters needed to be added at UT.
“Delta Phi Epsilon was selected in the extension process back in the spring of 2019. National groups must follow that process and be selected from that process in order to establish a chapter on campus,” said Burds. “FSL professional staff determines when we are ready to start that process.”
Creating more individual organizations will allow for smaller numbers in each chapter. FSL hopes doing so promotes more meaningful experiences for students involved in Greek Life.
DPhiE prides itself in being an inclusive and accepting sorority. Jenkins shared how she joined DPhiE due to her shared values with the sorority.
“I joined DPhiE because they are huge on body positivity. DPhiE made me feel like I belong because all of us are different in a great way,” said Jenkins
DPhiE’s official colors are royal purple and gold. Delta Phi Epsilon’s mascot is a unicorn, which represents their goal of being inclusive and accepting of all women.
The sorority is partnered with two philanthropies, The National Association for Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) and The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (CFF). Throughout the year, the sorority will plan events and fundraisers to help promote both organizations.
Abby Taaffe, a sophomore marine biology major, is helping to guide DPhiE’s start up at UT. She explained that the sorority is excited to begin outreach around campus after they gain their petition to charter.
“I think the next step for our chapter is to become integrated into the campus,” said Taaffe. “I’m most excited for creating our own history and traditions within the sorority and becoming connected with all the new members.”
Many of the events and traditions are based on other DPhiE chapters across the country. But, until the petition is accepted, the sorority is not allowed to hold official events. After the petition to charter is accepted at UT, Delta Phi Epsilon can begin to fully plan events. DPhiE expects the petition to charter to be accepted in the next couple of weeks.
Juliana Walter can be reached at email@example.com