I am happy to report that the Fall 2021 Xi Lights Undergraduate Report is much brighter than the previous report from spring 2021. As my term as undergraduate draws to a close I am very optimistic about the future of our fraternity. The recently established president-elect, James Troiano, along with Carlos Godoy as Rush Chairs, have put together a very promising rush schedule that will once again be in person. The entire chapter is thrilled at the prospect of the rush process returning to a sense of normalcy, and welcoming more astounding young men into our chapter.
Also, I am happy to report that our chapter has maintained a very successful semester despite the sanctions placed on us in the Camp Albemarle case. Newly elected Brotherhood Bonding Chairs, Ray Ruhlmann ’23 and Gunnar DeSantis ’24 have preemptively kick-started their efforts in organizing and coordinating events for brothers to participate in, even though their term begins in 2022. Already they have organized an overnight camping trip for brothers to get away for a weekend and experience the wilderness from a new angle.
A huge shoutout to the philanthropy chairs, Niketas Koussis ’22 and Ryan Fruehwirth ’22, to organize amazing philanthropy events throughout the semester. Most notably the successful Halloween Bar Crawl that raised $3,700 for On Our Own Charlottesville, which is $1,600 more than the Theta Chi Brackets for Relief from spring 2021. We are very proud of the growth we have seen in our philanthropy in just one semester, and plan on continue riding this trend into the Spring of 2022.
Unfortunately, to many brothers’ dismay, on September 23 it was realized the picture commemorating Otto Warmbier and his artwork was missing. Upon this discovery, many brothers rallied behind the cause of its retrieval. Eventually, through the efforts of the brotherhood, CavDaily posted an article about the theft on their website. This article led to the local CBS News station reaching out to run their own segment of the story on their channel. Within 24 hours of the news segment running, the paintings were returned to the house with an apology letter attached. It was an honor for me to have been present for the brotherhood actively protecting the legacy of a brother of our chapter, and it was truly inspiring seeing their passion for this brotherhood. Special thanks to the efforts of Ray Ruhlmann ’23 in retrieving this piece of Otto’s legacy.
Looking back as the semester draws to an end, it was once again a unique semester, but also a very successful semester for our chapter, and it has been an honor to belong to this brotherhood of intelligent, resolute men.
Clay Hardy ’23