The brothers of Sigma Nu hosted a “Brother For Sale” event Thursday March 1st as a lead-up fundraiser for April’s Charity Classic basketball game, Sigma Nu against Alpha Tau Omega.
Their philanthropy, Jessie’s Gift, is unique to Sigma Nu’s chapter as it differs from other national chapters. Jessie’s Gift was established in 2004 after the passing of the house’s sweetheart, Jessie Longhurst.
“It’s kind of different from the outside, so people might not understand the importance of it,” Sigma Nu president Daniel Durance, Midland junior, said. “Every year we have a dinner with Jessie’s parents who are the founders of [Jessie’s Gift] and they tell the whole backstory and how much mentoring meant to her. So when you hear that, it’s pretty powerful. It really inspires us to go out and make sure that you have something to put towards it.”
With a majority of the house participating in the mentoring program, a large emphasis of the philanthropy involves Albion public schools.
“I think it’s important because it’s in Albion,” said David Watson, Bangor sophomore. “It’s something anyone can actively participate in, a better way to get in touch with the community. It does seem like the college is segregated a little bit from the city, and this is just a great way to get involved.”
A program consisting of over 200 members, the growing connection between the college and the elementary school has been an important illustration.
“I’ve had a lot of conversations with Peg Turner, head of the mentoring program, and she’s been saying that Albion’s kind of going down the drain with funding,” said philanthropy chair Lorenzo Reese, Belleville junior. “We really want to raise a lot of money this year to help them out.”
There is a goal of one thousand dollars for the Brother For Sale auction and an ultimate goal of twelve thousand dollars, a big step up from past years. The goal was more the exceeded as Sigma Nu raised over two thousand dollars just from the auction.
“We used to raise more money than all the other fraternities combined, and we’ve raised less in the last three or four years,” said Durance. “So we want to really get back up there with twelve thousand plus dollars.”
Hosted by professor Vicki Baker and Krysta Schroeder, Grosse Pointe junior, each Sigma Nu brother will get auctioned off, starting at 10 dollars for the dinner. Each upper level purchased adds on any lower level’s prize. For 30 dollars the winner’s dorm room cleaned once, 50 dollars gets a McDonalds run and delivery, and anything above 70 dollars, they winner will have the Brother will clean their sorority lodge of a member of a sorority.