Delt Leads Selfless Life of Excellence
We have all heard it. Which fraternity did you join? The party one, the nerdy one, the preppy one? Andrew Foy (Iowa State 2015) didn’t join any of these. Foy chose to join a group of men who were accepting of all and pushed one another to fulfill their highest potential.
During the second semester of his freshman year at Iowa State, Foy found himself in a bit of a rut socially and academically. He wasn’t sure what he wanted to major in, and he struggled to meet others outside his dorm room. When it came time for recruitment, however, Foy found comfort in Delta Tau Delta’s Gamma Pi Chapter, where he came out of his comfort zone and began to have a more engaging college experience.
“Just as I hoped, that first spring semester was the busiest I’d ever been (in the best ways),” said Foy. “I was getting involved in Greek Week events, philanthropy events and performance events that were absolutely out of my comfort zone, yet helped me grow as a person. The more time I was involved with the Delts, the more I felt a friendly nudge to push the envelope of what I was capable of doing.”
Foy graduated in May 2015 with a degree in horticulture: landscape design, installation and maintenance option, and a minor in entrepreneurial studies; however, as graduation approached and he began to search for career opportunities, he second-guessed whether the career path his degree was leading him in was the right choice. Foy was the son of a lawyer and a social worker and always seemed to be very aware of the many injustices and issues in the world.
“It was my belief growing up that, as an adult, I’d have a career working to solve some of these issues,” said Foy. “After several months of no luck with finding intriguing and fulfilling job opportunities, I decided to alter my search to see if it was possible to combine landscape design with work that would have a meaningful impact.”
This is when Foy came across a landscape design/site design intern position with Project Somos in Guatemala. Project Somos (www.projectsomos.org) is an eco-sustainable children’s village that works to children from becoming orphans and supports widowed and single mothers who are at risk of losing their children. After some soul-searching, Foy decided he wanted to pursue the position; however, funding was a major obstacle. He began to send donation letters to offset the cost of the trip.
“My most successful donation letter, by far, was the request I sent out to the Gamma Pi alumni,” said Foy. “Although I didn’t personally know anyone on the list, I sent them all a letter and got an amazing response.”
With the help of the Iowa State alumni and other organizations, Foy’s trip costs were covered, in full, just short of two weeks before departing for his trip.
Foy began his trip in Antigua, where he completed two weeks of Spanish study, so he could better communicate with the residents at Project Somos. He spent mornings at the school and the rest of his time immersed in fully Spanish-speaking environments. His time in Guatemala was spent onsite at the Project Somos Children’s Village. He bonded with the mothers and children there, who had previously undergone very traumatic experiences.
“The experience of forming these relationships was so strong and impactful, in fact, that it inspired me to change my post-graduate plans,” said Foy. “I discovered forming relationships with and helping people was extremely rewarding.”
Soon, Foy will continue on this selfless career path by joining the AmeriCorps Farm to School Educator program with Urban Roots in Reno, NV.
“I think every Delt needs to realize that no matter his major, profession, income-level or interests,” explained Foy, “he, as a first-world citizen and college-educated fraternity man has enjoyed (and perhaps taken for granted) so many privileges and opportunities that billions around the world will never be able to enjoy. While it’s easy to fall into the routine of only worrying about ourselves, our bills and our problems, every Delt must remember that he has pledged a life committed to excellence and has an obligations to use his time, talents and efforts to help others in some way.”