Greeks make an IMPACT

By Linda Luk

Greeks will get away from DeKalb this weekend to develop unity in the their community, and to learn leadership skills.

Representatives from the social sororities and fraternities will attend a leadership conference titled IMPACT at NIU’s Lorado Taft campus.

“IMPACT is a weekend retreat aimed at leading the Greek community at Northern toward working together, and that it is not merely an abstract idea,” said Darnell Bradley, programming coordinator for fraternities and sororities affairs. “It is something feasible and very real.”

IMPACT is an acronym for influencing, motivating, purpose, action, community and trust.

The purpose is to try to bring the Greek community together for unity, and to learn how to use each chapter’s commonality and differences to be more cohesive, said Chris Juhl, activities adviser for Greek affairs.

“What we are trying to do is to get all the organizations together,” said Troy Tillis, student coordinator of IMPACT. “We all share a common bond to be student leaders on campus. We all have different ideas, once we collaborate together, I think we would get something out of that.”

Members of all three Greek governing bodies, College PanHellenic Council, Interfraternity Council and the National Panhellic Council, were invited to attend the conference. Fifty to 60 students are expected to attend the conference with representatives from more than 20 chapters.

“The All-Greek Council takes effect in January,” said Bradley. “Having all three councils participate will certainty facilitate that movement.”

Some of the topics that will be discussed include leadership styles, values of individual chapters and communication.

“I think the biggest topic we will address this weekend is putting unity back in the Greek community,” Bradley said. “Through this unity we hope that chapters will learn to recognize each other’s similarities and respect each other’s differences.”

Sophomore Emily Grobe from Delta Gamma was nominated from her chapter to attend the conference.

“I am attending just because I want to get involved,” Grobe said. “I want to get new ideas, fresh ideas for the chapter and to find out what other chapters do.”

The conference is part of the educational programs offered by the North American Interfraternity Conference.

“I’ve seen such amazing things come from IMPACT,” Juhl said. “It is geared toward sophomores because we want people who will be here two or more years. We train them when they are young and hope the will continue.”

IMPACT is one of the few programs that is designed for all three councils, Bradley said. Chapters will benefit from the conference by fully participating in the retreat, and willingly accepting the ideals of leadership and unity.

Speakers are being brought in from all areas of the Midwest.

“Facilitators range from Greek advisers to other student life directors,” Bradley said. “All combined, the facilitators have over 50 years of Greek life experience.”

The Greek community doesn’t always get a chance to come across good speakers, facilitators to motivate students to get to where the organizations need to be, Tillis said. It is important that all chapters are present and that all are on the same page and strive for one goal.