University of Rochester

University Greek Organizations Earn Top Honors

January 15, 2009

It's all Greek at the University of Rochester this year. From students to alumni to administrators, the University's Greek-lettered community has been recognized for its exceptional contributions by national organizations during conferences this summer and fall.

Heather Williams '08 earned the Regene Freund Cohane Outstanding Chapter President Award for Sigma Delta Tau and Alissa Tully '08 received the Janine Jacobs Goldberg Arcon of the Year Award for her sorority, Phi Sigma Sigma. Both awards recognize leaders who demonstrate the values and traditions of the sorority and who made large contributions to their chapters.

Julie Cain Burkhard, chairman of the National Panhellenic Conference, which is the umbrella organization for Phi Sigma Sigma and Sigma Delta Tau, said it was a "tremendous honor" for the University to have two women selected as presidents of the year. "These women have exemplified leadership and vision; they have been working hard to represent their chapters, their University, and the NPC," Burkhard added.

Several Rochester chapters' received national and regional awards citing excellence in philanthropy programs and community service efforts. Fraternity Psi Upsilon was awarded the Clasped Hand Award for Outstanding Philanthropy and Service; the fraternity was chosen among 46 chapters nationally. For the second consecutive year, member Ryan Cherniak '09 was awarded the Psi Upsilon Foundation Robert W. Parsons Scholarship for the highest moral, intellectual, and social excellence.

"I continue to be impressed by the caliber and efforts of our fraternities and sororities," said Matthew Burns, College Dean of Students at the University. "Our fraternity and sorority community is strong and gets stronger with each passing year because of their work and because of the efforts of our director of fraternity and sorority affairs, Monica Miranda Smalls."

Sorority Delta Gamma was given seven different awards, on a national and regional level, which included praise for the organization's excellence in programming, creative educational projects, strong commitment to the Honor Board, and successful recruitment. University of Rochester alumni also were honored for their commitment to Greek life after graduation. Diana Pankevich '97 and Stefanie Chautin '97 were elected as national officers for their sorority, Sigma Delta Tau.

"Having chapters receive national recognition confirms what we know about our Greek-lettered organizations: they are unique, successful, and vibrant, living and breathing positive change on an annual basis," said Smalls.