True Brother Initiative
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The TRUE Brother Initiative is a comprehensive development initiative that benefits new members, initiated members, and alumni of Lambda Chi Alpha. There are three main components of the TRUE Brother Initiative that reflect the stage at which a member of Lambda Chi Alpha is currently experiencing: the Outer Circle, the Inner Circle and the Mastery Circle; with the foundation for the True Brother identity being formed by the Seven Core Values of Lambda Chi Alpha- Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Service and Stewardship, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage.
No longer satisfied with how false concepts and inappropriate stereotypes contribute to the modern day fraternity experience, Lambda Chi Alpha recognizes our Seven Core Values as the foundation of our brotherhood, and these values are fully incorporated into all aspects of operations. From the beginning of a man’s Lambda Chi Alpha experience, these values are instilled and cultivated through a tactical approach to values based recruiting. Additionally, our Associate Member program has grown through a demanding, but never demeaning, new member education framework focusing on a young man’s growth, maturation, and development rooted in these philosophical values. This immediately continues with the ongoing programmatic development of our initiated brothers by offering structured developmental experiences.
In addition to embracing core values and developing our brothers past initiation, Lambda Chi Alpha has made the shift to utilize the educational and developmental model in approaching all aspects of operations affecting our constituencies. For new members and active brothers to alumni, staff, and beyond, the model is rooted in concepts like mentorship and role modeling, growth from failure, commitment, and servant leadership. Greater benefits are in store when we recognize that our men are more likely to strive for success when they occasionally encounter obstacles and challenges and prevail or make mistakes and are coached through them in a learning environment.
The Outer Circle
The Outer Circle is the first stage and during this stage, collegiate men are recruited into Lambda Chi Alpha using a values-based approach, taught the values of our Fraternity through experiential learning, and participate in meaningful pre-initiation activities. Chapters and colonies are expected to make a commitment to values-based recruitment and values-based education by incorporating and utilizing the Seven Core Values and Lambda Chi Alpha’s Learning Model in their chapter operations.
Values-based recruitment is being committed to actively seek, recruit, and bid prospective members that are predisposed to our ideals and core values, as well as showing a commitment to values based by developing events and activities during recruitment and throughout the year that are centered on the Seven Core Values.
After experiencing the Associate Member Ceremony, new associate members are then exposed to Lambda Chi Alpha’s Values Development Program and training curriculum. The program is an eight-week program designed to provide associate members with a foundation of conceptual understandings and practical skills to facilitate the developmental growth as men and contributing brothers of Lambda Chi Alpha. Associate Members will examine each core value in-depth to form the foundation of Lambda Chi Alpha’s approach to brotherhood. An important component of the associate member development program curriculum is experience-based learning.
The last step before Initiation is the associate member’s exposure to Lambda Chi Alpha’s approach to pre-initiation. Understanding pre-initiation is a crucial component of a brother’s experience, the Fraternity offers approved pre-initiation events and activities. Rooted in the backbone of Lambda Chi Alpha’s four-step learning model, pre-initiation is a meaningful last step in the development of associate members before Initiation.
The Inner Circle
The Inner Circle is the stage in Lambda Chi Alpha where brotherhood development takes root and answers the question “How do I translate what I learned and best use my talents and skills to help enhance my leadership skills and personal development?”
Historically, this is the area where most chapters drop the ball – by not continuing to develop our members as stewards of the organization. Here is here knowledge about the Fraternity and our rituals is translated and turned into action and skill building for our members. Thus, we create better chapters for Lambda Chi Alpha by increasing the capacity of our undergraduate brothers to work productively at the chapter and community level.
Reflective exercises associated with each developmental level ensure that brothers do not miss the meaning of their experiences. The general developmental movement within the initiated brother component is always towards a more complex and encompassing view of self, of others, and of fraternity. The Inner Circle journey is about systematically changing people by fundamentally shaping who they are (emotional understanding), what they know (cognitive understanding), and what they can do (behavioral understanding).
The Mastery Circle
The Mastery Circle is the means for conveying life in Lambda Chi Alpha after graduation. Recognizing those brothers who truly grasp our values, ideals, and teachings have much more to offer our Fraternity and the larger society as men of character — the goal of the alumni brother is to master the undergraduate experience and then live our values, principles, and ideals. This circle actually begins before graduation and helps our graduating seniors’ transition to that of productive alumni brother, as well as teaching our older members how to be good mentors and mentees. Service back to Lambda Chi Alpha is also something that each member should strive for.
The final chapter of the TRUE Brother Initiative consists of the various roles that alumni can take in order to stay connected with Lambda Chi Alpha. Alumni can serve undergraduate chapters in an advisory role, through an alumni association, or by being a board member. These positions are crucial to maintaining the TRUE Brother Initiative.
Since the inception of the True Brother Initiative, Lambda Chi Alpha has created new roles and opportunities to capitalize upon the lifelong commitment of brotherhood, specifically with the Neville Advisor’s College and the Master Steward program
Specific alumni volunteer opportunities include:
• High Pi
• Alumni Advisory Board
• Master Steward
• Housing Corporation
When successful, the developmental dynamics which combine to influence late adolescent and young adults can lead to the development of positive life styles and an internal moral compass. It therefore seems clear that Lambda Chi Alpha should dedicate itself to supporting the development of these capacities in our undergraduate members as they traverse this important developmental phase in their lives. Such facilitative influence would not only ensure the increasing excellence of the undergraduate fraternal experience but will likely also promote the development of life long loyalty among our brothers and lifelong success for the brothers who have passed through this fraternal journey.
The True Brother journey outlined in this program is designed to support successful development by maximizing the positive influence of peers and mentors, and moving our brothers towards an increased capacity for self-reflection and self-awareness. This program sets up goals of leadership, stewardship, learning and service and explicates a range of core values associated with being a true brother which when pursued, lead toward a better tomorrow.
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