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Tuesday, August 16, 2022

UF fraternity Alpha Phi Alpha wins chapter of the year award

<p dir="ltr"><span>The brothers of the Theta Sigma chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity attended the international conference in Baltimore on July 16. They won chapter of the year for the second time, with the first time being in 2010.</span></p>
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The brothers of the Theta Sigma chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity attended the international conference in Baltimore on July 16. They won chapter of the year for the second time, with the first time being in 2010.

 

The brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha’s Theta Sigma chapter don’t do their work with the intention of winning awards.

However, an award is what they received when they were named chapter of the year at the fraternity’s international conference in Baltimore.

The chapter of the year award takes into account the chapter’s community service work, GPAs, corporate partners and leadership positions, among other qualifications.

Mohamad Merilan, the chapter’s president, said the brothers just enjoyed doing their work and being recognized on an international level at the July 16 conference was just a nice addition.

“It has really been a series of attributes that have led up to this international accolade,” he said. “It was so surreal.”

Merilan said his chapter’s focus on community service and their high GPAs were what helped secure the award.

He said one of their largest service projects was called “My Brother’s Keeper,” in which chapter members would support the widows of brothers who had passed away.

Merilan also said the fraternity registered more than 100 people to vote before the 2016 election and maintained an average GPA of 3.179, the highest of all Alpha Phi Alpha chapters.

Winning chapter of the year comes only two years after UF reinstated the fraternity in 2015. The chapter was suspended because of serious physical hazing and visible injuries in 2012, according to Alligator archives.

However, in its two years since returning to campus, the fraternity has won a collection of accolades. Merilan said he partially attributes this return success to the work of their adviser, William Atkins, who also serves as the Multicultural and Diversity Affairs director.

“(Atkins) has been the coach behind everything,” Merilan said. “It’s really that passion that he instilled in us to drive that passion up in the group.”

Moving forward, he said he hopes the momentum from winning chapter of the year will help the UF chapter expand its community service ventures because community partners will be more willing to work with them now.

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“We want to be the organization that takes that step forward to provide change in the community,” he said.

Brothers like Brendan “BJ” Jonassiant, former vice president of the chapter, were excited when it was announced that the chapter had won.

“For me, I believe Alpha Phi Alpha is the greatest frat in the world, and to be acknowledged as the greatest chapter of the greatest fraternity in the world is something that I’m very, very proud of,” he said.

 

The brothers of the Theta Sigma chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity attended the international conference in Baltimore on July 16. They won chapter of the year for the second time, with the first time being in 2010.

 

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