Wednesday, July 29, 2015

OFSA Staffing Updates
On behalf of Student Affairs, I want to provide two updates regarding staffing in the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs.  As you all know, in June, Tim Wilkinson left Lehigh after more than 10 years of service to Lehigh to pursue the Associate Dean of Students position at Wake Forest University. Following his departure, we launched a national search for a new Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs. I want to thank the members of the search committee who worked diligently throughout the search process.  

Ashley Baudouin, OFSA
Matthew Bay, IFC 
Ozzie Breiner, Residential Services
Gladys Castellon, Multicultural Greek Council
Chad Davis, Advancement
Howard Foltz, Greek Alumni Council 
Rosa Guzman, OFSA
Chris Mulvihill, Dean of Students Office
Tyrone Russell, Multicultural Affairs
Ellen Weich/Katherine McLaughlin, Panhellenic 

Throughout our process, we interviewed a number of candidates who could bring a variety of skills and experiences to this role at Lehigh.  However at the completion of our process, the search committee unanimously agreed that there was not a candidate who we collectively felt was best suited to lead Lehigh's fraternity and sorority community at this time.  Therefore, with the support of the Search Committee, we developed an interim transition plan and made the decision to launch a more robust national search at a later date.   

Effective August 1st, Ashley Baudouin who was recently promoted to serve as the Associate Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs will begin serving as the interim Assistant Dean/Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs for the upcoming academic year.  Prior to beginning in her new role, Ashley served as an Assistant Director for Fraternity and Sorority Affairs for 3 years at Lehigh.  In her time in that role, Ashley has had the opportunity to work closely with all aspects of the Lehigh fraternity and sorority community, including advising our undergraduate councils, partnering with the Greek Alumni Council, and implementing a variety of health and safety, diversity and inclusion and other educational initiatives within our community.  We feel confident that with the full support of the Student Affairs leadership, Ashley will effectively be able to lead the OFSA team during this time of transition.  Congratulations Ashley and thank you for your willingness to serve in this capacity!

As mentioned above, we are committed to the continued future success of our fraternity and sorority community at Lehigh, and as such, we will begin a new national search for this position in Spring 2016.  

On another note, we would also like to announce that Jennifer Tedeschi who has served as an Assistant Director at Lehigh for the past year will be moving on to a new role as Interim Assistant Director for Student Activities and Greek Life at Gettysburg College in the next two weeks.  Jennifer worked with IFC and a number of our chapters over the past year and also assisted with other departmental initiatives such as the Greek Gala, Greek Week, and Social Host Training for our chapters.  We are very thankful to Jen for her service to the Dean of Students Office and Fraternity and Sorority Affairs at Lehigh and wish her much success as she begins her new role at Gettysburg and moves closer to loved ones in the D.C. area.  

Over the next couple weeks, chapters who worked with Jen as well as IFC can expect Ashley and I to be in touch with transition plans for the upcoming academic year.  In addition, we will begin an immediate search to fill this Assistant Director vacancy.

In conclusion, we are thankful to so many undergraduate students and alumni members of our community who have been supportive and actively involved with our office during this transitional time. We are looking forward to partnering with all of you to have an excellent year in Fraternity and Sorority Affairs. If you have any questions or would like to discuss anything further, please email us at and Ashley or I will be happy to speak with you.

Allison Gulati

Monday, July 27, 2015

Accreditation Results for 2014-2015

The Accreditation results for the 2014-2015 academic year have been finalized and the ratings breakdown for the 30 fraternities and sororities reviewed this academic year included seven gold chapters, 13 silver chapters, and eight bronze chapters.  Additionally, two chapters were rated poor. 

The Accreditation results provide feedback intended to support efforts to enhance the success of Greek chapters.  We encourage chapters to accept the feedback in the constructive spirit in which it is offered, and urge undergraduate and alumni members to discuss this feedback and develop an action plan for continued success.  The results are published on the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs website at  

A heartfelt thank you goes out to the members of the Accreditation Committee who worked tirelessly through hours of presentations and discussions.     

For questions or concerns, please contact the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs by phone at 610-758-4157 or by email at 

Monday, July 13, 2015

Rachel Sholder: What I've Learned from Greek Leadership

As a rising senior at Lehigh University and an active member of the Zeta Beta Chapter of Alpha Gamma Delta, I have had my fair share of involvement with Greek Life and the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs. During my sophomore year, I served as Alpha Gamma Delta’s Vice President of Operations and Accreditation Chair. During my junior year, I served as the Executive Vice President of Member Development (VPMD), partial New Member Educator, and Standards Board Chair. This upcoming school year, I will be serving as my chapter’s representative on the Judicial Board of the Panhellenic Executive Council. I will also be entering my third year as my chapter’s representative as the Sorority Liaison to the Women’s Center. All of these positions together have given me great insight into what it truly means to be a Greek leader and what makes a Greek leader different than a regular club leader.

As a club leader, you have the opportunity to collaborate with incredible students, seek guidance from faculty advisors, and work with the school administration. As President of Key Club in high school and as President of the Peer Health Advisers in college, I have seen and experienced all of these things. However, being a Greek leader is different. While you still have the opportunity to collaborate with incredible students, the people you are working with aren’t just students; they are your sisters, housemates, and best friends. You are going to experience tension with them, and that is completely okay. You can’t go home at night and tell your family about your crazy “co-workers” and wake up the next morning with a fresh start; you have to eat breakfast with your “co-workers”, participate in fun events like Greek Week with your “co-workers,” and maybe even share a room with “co-workers” despite maybe disliking some decisions they make. While you still have the opportunity to seek guidance from advisors, unlike most club advisors who are the main source of support for club members, Greek advisors stand back and let the Greek leaders run the chapter. While you still have the opportunity to work with school administration, this can extend to much deeper levels; my position during my sophomore year in Alpha Gamma Delta allowed me to work with individuals outside of Greek life, enabling me to branch out of the Greek life environment and work with many people in the Office of the Dean of Students.

Respect is not only one of the hardest things to learn as a Greek leader, but also one of the hardest things to learn as a Greek member. As a Greek leader, how are you supposed to be the person who goes out and has fun with your friends, but calls them into a Standards Board meeting if they push things too far? As a Greek member, how are you supposed to listen to general in-house rules that are given to you by your fellow peer and friend? Of course, a general member is allowed to voice her opinions. But, what makes it okay to yell at a Greek leader of your chapter? Because you wouldn’t do that to your boss, a club leader, or faculty advisor. And essentially a Greek leader is all of those combined into one job. What I learned worked best was to separate the two, which also seemed to work best for my friends. I even once had someone knock on my door and say, “I need to talk to you about something related to Alpha Gam, but can you just be Rachel for a minute and not Vice President Rachel?” My door was always open and no matter how much time giving personal advice about school, family, relationships, etc. took away from my other responsibilities, the trust, openness and nonjudgmental environment I created in my bedroom helped to extend that feeling of camaraderie in other aspects of the member development of our chapter as well as earn me more respect from my sisters. It is important to maintain positive, constructive and respectful relationships with people, especially as a Greek leader because you may be many members’ number one source of guidance and support.

Appreciation is a big one. After my sophomore year in Alpha Gam, I felt as if I had dedicated the majority of my free time to my chapter, but that my work was under recognized. I made it my mission in my junior year as Executive Vice President to instill one thing in each and every one of our members: you matter. Being in a chapter with over 100 women, it is easy to feel like your dedication and support to the chapter is unnoticed—even as President—and it is easy to feel like your opinions, your thoughts, and your feelings don’t matter. Well, they do. To recognize dedication of chapter members, each Sunday was Officer Appreciation day; every sister holding a position had one Sunday during the year where her hard work was recognized. Every Sunday, there was also a new Sister of the Week; this award was given to a general member who did something outstanding in the week prior. These two initiatives that I started aren’t meant to stay forever, but meant to start a change of mind. We shouldn’t need a day to appreciate the hard work of our sisters. While the Greek leaders are vital, in reality, you need more worker bees than queen bees. We should realize each and every day that our chapter wouldn’t be operating without everyone’s hard work and dedication.

Bridging relationships across member classes (or pledge classes) is a huge part of appreciation. When I was writing the New Member Plan, I wanted to make sure each of the member classes had an opportunity to bond with our new members. I created one event for the new members to have with PC ’12 (mostly seniors), PC ’13 (mostly juniors) and PC ’15 (mostly sophomores). All of the new members said that by far, these activities were their favorites. Again, the purpose of these events was not only to bond and have fun, but also to start a change of mind. It is okay (and natural) to form cliques and feel slightly separated by member class. But it is not okay to exclude sisters who aren’t in your most direct clique, it is not okay to state generalizations about a member class (ex: if you are mad at a junior sister, be mad at her and not the entire junior class), and it is not okay to assume the newest member class has the majority of responsibilities. We are not four separate sisterhoods separated by class year. We are not twenty separate sisterhoods separated by cliques. We are one sisterhood (or brotherhood).

There’s a side of Greek life that most people don’t see unless they have had the privilege of being a part of it. Being in a leadership role in a Greek chapter is hands-on training for essential life, business and personal skills. Also, being in a position of Greek leadership allows you to instill respect and appreciation, among many other things, in your members—leadership qualities that are harder to learn than time management, commitment, confidence and intuition. It is a valuable experience that you simply cannot get anywhere else.