ZBTs Learn Leadership, Brotherhood

Zeta Beta Tau continues to expand and grow our selection of educational opportunities for undergraduate brothers in creative ways. Traditional programs like the James E. Greer, Jr. Presidents’ Leadership Academy and Dover Days continue to advance the ways in which the Fraternity connects with brothers at the individual level.

In the 2016-2017 year, ZBT’s programs improved their effectiveness through strong facilitation, a focus on practical skills and sharing valuable life lessons.

James E. Greer, Jr. Presidents’ Leadership Academy

The James E. Greer, Jr. Presidents’ Leadership Academy is a weekend-long training program for Chapter and Colony Presidents each January. The 2017 event brought 30 Chapter and Colony Presidents together and several faculty, alumni and staff for a weekend of brotherhood bonding.

“This program has transformed the way that I see myself and my chapter. I am grateful for the opportunity to learn from other presidents and ZBT professionals,” said Alex C. Jalazo, Kappa (Cornell University) ’19.

Participants had an overwhelmingly positive experience with their brothers.

“I have learned what it means to be a leader and how to problem solve. I think my education on leadership has been quite expanded,” said Dom N. Alcorta, Delta Eta (Lynn University) ’19.

Emerging Leaders Institute

Growing in its third year, the graduates of the Emerging Leaders Institute continue to become better men, with participants of the 2015 and 2016 classes now serving as Chapter Presidents, student government leaders and ZBT Supreme Councilors. The program continues to target an audience of new initiates or brothers within their first two years of brotherhood who do not hold an officer position. The 2017 program brought together 16 brothers from around the country.

“(The Emerging Leaders Institute) has given me a meaningful understanding of my own strengths and weaknesses as a leader, and has given me the tools and skills to apply those within the Fraternity,” said Alec Donelian, Delta (Columbia University) ’19.

The 2017 Emerging Leaders class participants learned personal leadership skills, and spent time learning and bonding on the outdoors challenge course at YMCA Camp Thunderbird.

“Fantastic learning experience for any brother, leader or not,” said William R. Lerrick, Alpha Nu (Muhlenberg College) ’19.

Dover Days

The Dover Day programs were held throughout the month of February. The events, building on last year’s success of partnering with undergraduate host chapters, were held at nine campuses around the United States.

With Dover Days being a geography-specific program, connecting brothers in the area is a primary goal and one of the driving forces in creating the agenda. Most sites hosted between six and 12 chapters, as well as alumni who were part of panel sessions and who served in other facilitation roles.

“At our Dover Day, we had undergraduate and alumni brothers come to learn and collaborate with each other from across the region, and there was a lot of love in the room. It was clear that our brotherhood not only transcends schools, but also generations,” said Mitchell R. McLeod, Mu (Boston University) ’19, the student chairman of the Boston Dover Day. “Thanks to ZBT, I’m gaining the skills I need to be successful and make an impact upon my community.”

Alternative Spring Break

The Alternative Spring Break was held in New York City from March 12 to 18. The program was again hosted in partnership with Repair the World, a non-profit service partner in Brooklyn. Repair the World provided a micro grant to Zeta Beta Tau for the second year in a row.

The program brought together 14 brothers from seven different chapters.

“The experience in New York City was priceless and will remain with me for the rest of my life,” said Daniel I. Regalado, Delta Iota (University of Central Florida) ’18. “(Alternative Spring Break) is a great way of giving back to others in need, completing the Jewish values of helping others as well as maturing and developing ourselves as men.”

Collectively, the brothers provided approximately 182 hours of community service. This provided a financial impact for the Brooklyn community of $5,106.92

“I am taking back (to my chapter) the idea of having a deeper understanding of issues to create more meaningful service in Cleveland. I want to get our chapter more involved in the Jewish community and learn more about Jewish values,” Jacob A. Frisch, Lambda (Case Western Reserve University) ’20. “It was an amazing experience and changed my perspective on service as well as understanding more about our Fraternity and meeting brothers across the U.S.”

Israel Advocacy Summit

Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity’s 2016 Israel Advocacy Summit helped attendees to make a meaningful connection with ZBT’s Mission and heritage.

More than 50 undergraduate and alumni brothers and guests took the opportunity to learn how to improve advocacy efforts on their campuses, hear from experts on Middle East issues and network with brothers who share similar values at the three-day program in Washington, D.C., from November 18 to 20, 2016. Brothers were afforded many other opportunities for networking and brotherhood development as well, such as a Shabbat dinner, partner connecting and exploring the nation’s capital as part of the Israel Advocacy Summit.

“The Israel Advocacy Summit is a wonderful opportunity to learn, especially if your chapter is not doing much advocacy,” said participant Samuel D. Schutt, Eta Tau (University of Iowa) ’17. “It’s a great option to learn and improve, but also a great way to meet other undergraduates and hear what they’re doing and how to better your own chapter.”

Thank you

Each year the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation underwrites the cost of many undergraduate educational leadership programs so as to maximize their personal development and prepare them to be leaders of society. The James E. Greer, Jr. Presidents’ Leadership Academy is made possible by a generous grant from the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation. The grant is funded in part by The Shartiag/Varon Fund of the UJ-Eighty Corporation and other various donors and gifts. The Emerging Leaders Institute, Dover Days and Israel Advocacy Summit also are made possible by generous grants from the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation. Support the Foundation at zbtfoundation.org/donate.