Kappa Iota Chapter Installed at Norfolk Karnea
The scene itself wasn’t that uncommon among new chapters. Twenty men sat around a table while the ink dried on the newly signed charter sitting to the side. The roll book had been signed and the men were listening to alumni testimonials on the power of Ritual and the greater power of the Fraternity in their lives. Similar men have sat in similar rooms for decades in advance of a chapter chartering. What was uncommon was the more than 400 men one floor below waiting to welcome their new brothers.
The Norfolk Karnea was many things. It was a family reunion of sorts. It was a time to chart a new future for the Fraternity. It witnessed the recommitment to friendships many decades in the making. It oversaw the forging of new friendships. For the first time in 26 years, the Karnea was another thing: the location for the installation of a new chapter of Delta Tau Delta. During the regular Ritual session on Saturday morning, the men of the East Carolina Crescent Colony became the men of the Kappa Iota Chapter of Delta Tau Delta.
The installation at Karnea was the first since the Theta Rho Chapter from the University of Dayton was installed at the 1996 Washington, DC Karnea. For many of the attendees, watching an entire chapter of new men being initiated was a Karnea highlight. For those twenty men, it was an experience they will never forget.
The Kappa Iota Chapter began with great difficulty. After an intense courtship, the Fraternity earned the ability to start a new group from the administration. The project launch date was fall 2020. Unfortunately, fall 2020 coincided with the COVID pandemic and the launch was postponed to the fall of 2021. Remarkably none of the men who stood on stage taking their Oath of a Delt had even heard of Delta Tau Delta one year earlier. In less than a year the colony earned its charter and became a leader on campus. Chapter president Davis Roberts was among those 20.
“We’re ecstatic and there’s no better word for it,” Roberts said. “To be installed in front of so many brothers and hear them all say how proud they were was incredible. And then we received the Selzer Award for our service to JDRF. Honors like that are once in a lifetime and to have that in front of brothers from all over the nation made it that much more special and worth all our hard work.”
Roberts said those who joined Delt at ECU have a strong desire to live lives of excellence focusing their brotherhood on community service and philanthropy through JDRF and their local community working with Mr. Beast. After raising over $50,000 this past academic year, they will work to find more Delts to join them in their goal of raising over $100,000 for JDRF during the upcoming academic year.
Instrumental in the pursuit of the charter were the alumni. Chapter advisor Bryson Brown (University of Kansas, 2019) patiently awaited his call to provide young men guidance and advice. Just as the young men had to wait more than a year to begin the process, Brown had to wait a year to take the job of chapter advisor. His influence was consistent even though the men often needed little guidance.
"Serving as the Kappa Iota Advisor has been one of the most fulfilling opportunities," Brown said. "As a mentor, having the privilege to assist and help lead the group in receiving their charter has an unspoken value. I have been with the group since their first colony meeting on campus – that day forward each man pledged to one day call themselves a Delt. The camaraderie is inspiring. I see the guys bring to life this new brand of fraternity on the East Carolina campus embodying philanthropy, brotherhood, academics, community outreach and having fun doing it. The group has accomplished so much in six months; receiving the James O. Selzer Award for most money raised for JDRF, having their banner raised at Karnea and each man receiving his badge as a Delt."
The Kappa Iota Chapter becomes the fifth chartered chapter in the state of North Carolina. It joins Appalachian State University with active chapters and Duke, the University of North Carolina and the University of North Carolina-Wilmington as Delta Tau Delta outposts in the Old North State.