Expanding the Circle – Kappa Delta Chartered
Founding the Kappa Delta Chapter
By Shaheer Bhatti (Kappa Delta ’21) and Morgan Walton (Kappa Delta ’20)
If you had asked me if I thought I’d be the president of a fraternity a year ago, I would have said you were insane! The stereotypical image of what most people envision when they hear “fraternity” is essentially where my thought process was. Fast forward a few months to September and I have accepted a bid to join one of the most prestigious fraternities and am helping to create the Kappa Delta Chapter of the Zeta Psi Fraternity.
However, the story of the Kappa Delta Chapter didn’t start in the Fall of 2019. It actually began many months before with the help of our first Phi, Morgan Walton. Zeta Psi had expressed an interest in expanding to George Mason University by 2018 where a past Phi Alpha’s son was attending. Parker Lesley, an initiated brother from our Tau Gamma chapter, had recently transferred from Purdue and spearheaded the effort to expand into Northern Virginia. It seemed like the perfect scenario in which to start a chapter. Unfortunately, that first effort was unsuccessful as Parker graduated before we could reach the required quantity and quality of brothers. However, that effort taught Morgan, who was still attending George Mason, some of the values and history of Zeta Psi. He wanted to persevere and create a lasting legacy, even if he could only participate for a single semester before he graduated.
After beginning the fall semester of 2019, Morgan worked to grow the group. He looked for the right kind of brother — the ones that would be able to uphold the tradition that they were joining. He found immediate success in reaching out to his friends and their friends. The group expanded rapidly. There was a strong allure in that Zeta Psi is an historical fraternity in which brothers could form close bonds with students at George Mason, a plethora of other universities and from all walks of life.
During the fall semester, I was approached by Brother Mark Sedra and introduced to the group, which at this point consisted of around ten members. After speaking with a number of them and getting interviewed by Brother Bill Weisenhorn, I realized that my initial assumptions about fraternity life were most likely unwarranted and joining Zeta Psi might be one of the best decisions I could make at the time.
Our group strived to fulfill every requirement given to us by IHQ so that we could earn our charter. Whether it involved interviewing potential new members to grow our chapter or reviewing the history of Zeta Psi for our initial exams, the colony began spending more time together. We became a unit working towards one common goal. It was roughly around this time where we held our first elections. Before then, the chapter had been a loose amalgamation of leaders from all around the school. Some were excellent marketers, some were great friends and some showed the drive and willingness to develop the chapter’s tradition and rituals. All were dedicated to the foundation of the chapter. All were dedicated to Zeta Psi.
After speaking with Brother Ben Lucas, our current Alpha Phi, I realized that I had built relationships with a majority of the group and wanted to see our chapter reach not only the top rank of fraternities at George Mason but also of the Zeta Psi Fraternity itself. It was an ambitious goal and one I’m still striving towards today. This ambition also led to my appointment as Phi as Ben nominated me as a potential candidate for the position during our elections. After our elections, we worked tirelessly to fulfill each requirement so that we could get our charter. Now, fast forward to March 21st where we officially became the Kappa Delta Chapter of Zeta Psi and truly begun our story.