Jason J. Colombini, Eta Mu (California Polytechnic State University) 2014 demonstrates Brotherhood for a Lifetime as an alumnus of ZBT. He was initiated into ZBT in 2011 as a sophomore, when the then-colony progressed toward earning its charter and determining its long-term trajectory. Jason graduated from Cal Poly in 2014 and proceeded to join the “engaged alumni” ranks, serving as a Chapter Development Consultant for Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity during the 2014-15 academic year.
Brother Colombini’s experience as a staff member allowed him to see how engaged advisors and volunteers lead to successful chapters.” Naturally, when the time came for Jason to leave the Fraternity’s professional staff, he transitioned to serve as a volunteer for his beloved Eta Mu Chapter, signing on as the primary chapter advisor for his alma mater the day after he left ZBT staff.
When asked why he has remained involved as an alumnus, Jason indicated it was for a few reasons. First, he wanted to be able to offer “historical context locally” to address Chapter and campus dynamics or policies. He wanted to be able to answer “why” to the undergraduate leaders and also serve as a recognizable name and face to alumni as way to “promote a sense of pride in the Chapter” across all brothers. Brother Colombini continues to volunteer out of a sense of “loyalty to ZBT, in that fraternity is like family. It was such an important piece of [his] life when [he] was in college, so it’s remained a priority in [his] life as [he’s] grown.” Today, not only is Jason an advisor for the Eta Mu Chapter, but he also co-chairs the Fraternity’s Chapter Advisor Development Committee and serves as a Chapter Advisor Liaison to the Fraternity’s Supreme Council.
Serving as an advisor brings with it certain challenges, such as “letting groups make mistakes at times, so they can learn from them and grow,” according to Jason. But he also indicated that it brings joy to him being part of brothers’ journeys beyond their undergraduate experience. At a time when fraternity life often finds itself under a microscope, positive influences like Jason, believers in the value of the fraternity experience, can help shape undergraduate leaders and ensure our continued relevance. While not all brothers have the time, energy or geographic proximity to serve as an engaged chapter advisor, Brother Colombini believes all brothers can find something to do to benefit ZBT, adding how “being involved is the easiest thing you can do as an alumnus; all you have to do is show up and give something back. You don’t have to be an advisor or a board member, just show up and see what happens. When you start giving back, you’ll see results.” Service is a bridge from man to man. Make service a part of your nature and it will make you strong, a man among men.
We thank Jason for his volunteerism and his belief in the ZBT experience. How will you serve ZBT?