SAE Fraternity Hosts Community Enrichment Dinner
The Rensselaer fraternity Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) hosted its annual Community Enrichment Dinner on Sept. 14. Faculty, staff, Greek Life administrators, and neighbors were invited to participate in the occasion.
The dinner is an opportunity to link the brotherhood with community members and to make a positive impact on their lives. Derek Roberts, a junior majoring in aeronautical engineering and an SAE member, described the dinner as “putting a name to a face,” which was displayed when each and every guest introduced themselves. A neighbor of the SAE chapter, Jeff Raia, said the dinner is a positive outreach program that brings the neighborhood together. He said he finds it comforting to know that his family can depend on the fraternity for anything as their neighbors.
The fraternity also gave a check for $1,000, which they raised in the past year, to the Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) representative Kelly Jendrzejewski. The CMN is an international nonprofit organization that has raised $4 billion since 1982 for children’s hospitals and medical research.
Rensselaer and the Greeks have always taken pride in maintaining positive relationships among their neighbors and the Troy community. SAE President John Patrick Hennessey, a senior majoring in mechanical engineering and design, innovation, and society, emphasized the importance of keeping good relations with the fraternity’s neighbors and being involved in the Troy community.
According to Associate Dean of Greek Life Matthew Hunt, community service events teach the Greeks to learn the concerns of their neighbors early in life so they can benefit from these lessons when they become future homeowners. Hunt continues to receive positive feedback from community partners and neighbors asking for help from students or asking for ways in which they can aid them in return.
Russell Kraft, an SAE dinner guest and professor of electronic, computer, and systems engineering, supports that by saying, “There are things individuals can’t do that fraternities can.”
Though the students may graduate, the ties between neighbors, Greek Life, and Rensselaer never cease. SAE chapter adviser John Thomas ’02 defines the relationship as a symbiotic one that will remain intact as long as the Greeks make the effort to help their neighbors and respect their needs.
“It is important that our neighbors see RPI and all of her students, faculty, and staff as community partners who are dedicated to the education of our students, as well as seeing Troy be the best city it can be,” said Hunt.