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The Life of a New MemberLucas McClatchy '21 Talks About Dedication and the Fraternity Experience

Many people think of the candidate/pledge process as the most time-consuming, least rewarding aspect of one’s fraternity experience. Over the past 6 weeks, I’ve learned that this could not be further from the truth. When I accepted my bid to join the Psi Chapter of Sigma Nu, I barely knew the names of my soon-to-be pledge brothers, and very few active brothers. Now, six weeks later, I know my pledge brothers as if they were my own family, and I’d give the shirt off my back for anyone in this fraternity. I know they’d do the same for me. Since I’ve joined, Sigma Nu has truly become a part of my family.

When I came to Carolina, I had issues with procrastination and a lack of dedication. Pledging has changed this, and has helped me improve my ways. Every night from 5-8, and upon request, we are granted study hours that push me, and my pledge brothers, to become better students. It reinforces the importance of focus, hard work, and has forced us to develop a strong work ethic. Although pledging is integral in becoming an active and committed member of Sigma Nu, the brothers realize that we are at UNC to succeed academically, and they do not lose sight of that. In addition to our study hours, we have been given an upperclassman mentor to help guide us through college. We were paired with our mentors based on majors, common interests, and career goals. These mentors help find clubs and organizations to get involved in, advise us with class registration, and have always been there to help with whatever we need.

On the night that I accepted my bid, I was scared at the idea of pledging, as any other freshman would. The horror stories that we hear on the news paint fraternities to be useless, unethical, and shallow. Six weeks into our process, I have realized that joining Sigma Nu was the best decision I could have ever made for my future. I’d be lying if I said the process wasn’t demanding and tiring, but I can’t wait to make the transition from pledge to active brother.