WKU FIJI Earns Fraternity’s Top Award

WKU FIJI Earns Fraternity’s Top Award

One of Phi Gamma Delta’s youngest chapters has received its highest award.

Cheney Cup
The Cheney Cup is awarded to the undergraduate chapter which demonstrates the greatest all-around efficiency in scholarship, fraternity relationships, and general collegiate activities.

The Chi Eta chapter at WKU was selected Monday as the recipient of the 2010-11 Cheney Cup. Phi Gamma Delta’s most prestigious award is presented annually to the chapter that exhibits the greatest all-around efficiency in scholarship, fraternity relationships and general collegiate activities.

The Cheney highlighted an awards season that also saw Chi Eta either win or place in nine other fraternity awards.

“We always warn our new chapters to beware of a sophomore slump. The Chi Eta Chapter not only avoided the slump, they moved to the head of the class, said Bill Martin, Executive Director of Phi Gamma Delta.  ” This level of recognition for a chapter that is only one year old is unprecedented in our fraternity.”

“The Cheney Cup signifies the highest honor our international fraternity can bestow upon a chapter,” Chapter President Tyler Jury said. “Our men are extremely humbled to receive this award as a first-year chapter.”

Phi Gamma Delta, also known as Fiji, arrived at WKU in the fall of 2008, and received its charter May 1, 2010.

In 2010, Chi Eta initiated 31 new brothers, donated over $70,000 in philanthropy money, performed over 5,000 service hours, and held the highest cumulative GPA among fraternities at WKU.

Chi Eta has been active on WKU’s campus, with brothers holding leadership roles in a variety of campus organizations, including Spirit Masters, the HonorsToppers, the College Heights Herald, the Hilltopper Battalion ROTC program, and multiple campus ministries.

Its members have raised money for the Alzheimer’s Association through the Fijis Across America bike ride, the South Central Kentucky Red Cross through its Rivalry Run, and Big Brothers/Big Sisters through the Bowling Green Spring Luau.

Chi Eta also partnered with Habitat for Humanity and the St. Vincent de Paul Society over WKU’s Fall Break to do work in areas of Baton Rouge, La., affected by Hurricanes Gustav and Katrina.

Jury said, “While it is great to be recognized to for our accomplishments, our men are excited to strive for a greater impact within WKU’s campus, the Bowling Green community and our international fraternity.”

Chapter advisors Dr. Ray Blankenship, Jeff Baynham and Ben Harper and graduate brother Chaz Vittitow were all honored with individual awards.

Vittitow received an Honorable Mention for Outstanding Graduating Senior.

He graduated from WKU in May and is now studying at the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry.

During his time on campus, he served as chapter president and historian, was a Spirit Master, graduated from the Honors College, and served as a Bible study leader for CRU.

Both Blankenship and Baynham are employed by WKU. Blankenship, who received first place as the Outstanding Faculty Advisor, serves as an Associate Professor in the Computer Information Systems program.

Baynham, who was honored as the Outstanding Purple Legionnaire (Chapter Advisor), is Director of Advancement Services.

“Having top-caliber advisors and graduates that provide extraordinary support to our chapter has been critical to our success,” said Jury.  “They truly exemplify our motto, ‘Not For College Days Alone’.”

The chapter will receive their awards in January at the annual Fiji Academy in St. Louis.

Chi Eta won or placed in the following chapter awards:

  • 1st, Cheney Cup – Greatest all-around chapter
  • 1st, Coon Plaque – Best chapter publication
  • 1st, Zerman Trophy – Promoting the involvement of brothers in student government, the campus newspaper and extracurricular activities
  • 3rd, Baker Cup – Focusing on religious, ethical and social service activities
  • 3rd, Brightman Trophy – Maintaining and improving relations between the chapter and graduates
  • 3rd, Jordan Bowl – Achieving the highest scholarship among undergraduate chapters

Representatives of Chi Eta also received these individual awards:

  • 1st, Crowder Cup – Outstanding faculty advisor, Ray Blankenship
  • 1st, Durrance Award – Outstanding Purple Legionnaire (chapter advisor), Jeff Baynham
  • Honorable Mention, Coulter Cup – Graduate brother with greatest contributions to chapter (other than Purple Legionnaire), Ben Harper
  • Honorable Mention, Wilkinson Award – Outstanding Graduating Senior, Chaz Vittitow

A full listing of the 2010-2011 Phi Gamma Delta awards is available here.

For more information about Phi Gamma Delta and the Chi Eta chapter, visit www.wkufiji.com.
Contact Jury at (270) 766-7121 or tyler.jury@gmail.com.

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