SigEp Blog

Paying It Forward

At Georgetown, no matter what you’re into or what you join, your experience will be defined by the people you meet.  And, clichéd as it might sound, any organization crumbles without the passion, dedication, and support of its members.  For many organizations on campus, the motto is you get out what you put in. As the vice-president of Member Development for SigEp, I can tell you that this is 100% accurate. Rarely, if ever, does any organization commit to its people in the manner we do with Member Development, to helping our members develop their minds, bodies, and life-long friendships.

At the core of MD are “challenges,” based on the amount of time you have spent in the fraternity, which help guide our brothers through their years at Georgetown. We also have weekly “sound mind” and ”sound body” events; in the past these have ranged from inviting speakers to speak to the chapter, to holding dodgeball or basketball tournaments. But what makes MD so special is that it builds upon itself, as it relies upon the wisdom and talents of older brothers to facilitate growth in their younger peers.  In that cycle of leadership and mentorship, brothers often find that their most rewarding moments in SigEp come from “paying it forward,” and learning that their knowledge and opinions matter just as much as the alumni they once looked up to themselves.  No two brothers are the same when they enter or leave SigEp, but regardless of one’s background, MD ensures that brothers graduate with the confidence and network to thrive after college.

I feel incredibly privileged to have had the opportunity to see our MD work from the inside, and I cannot say enough about my experiences.  From our biannual retreat to places like Gettysburg and Antietam, to resumé workshops, to discussions on manhood with Georgetown faculty, we continue to push our members to grow.  We continue, to steal a phrase from the Jesuits, to seek the “magis,” or the more. We’ve had alumni teach us about topics ranging from artificial intelligence to bartending.  In the next semester I look forward to expanding our MD efforts to capitalize on the endless opportunities surrounding us both on campus and in the broader D.C. area.  Part of what makes Georgetown such an incredible school is the access to the museums, monuments, and history, and we do our best to make use of that access. SigEp is in the business of building balanced men, and we do not pretend to be perfect. But for me, to understand the impact MD has, I simply need to look back on the person I was when I entered this fraternity and compare him to the man I am today.  As an underclassman I made a decision to join and to invest in SigEp, and I can honestly say that it has returned that investment for me tenfold.

Sam “MemDev” Bernstein, VP of Member Development, College ‘18