Talk:Sigma Phi Epsilon

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WikiProject Fraternities and Sororities (Rated B-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon Sigma Phi Epsilon is part of the Fraternities and Sororities WikiProject, an effort to build a comprehensive and detailed guide to Greek Life on the Wikipedia. This includes but is not limited to International social societies, local organizations, honor societies, and their members. If you would like to participate, you can edit the article attached to this page, visit the project page, where you can join the project, and/or contribute to the discussion.
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Local chapters[edit]

There are over 260 chapters. Sorry, guys, but that just won't scale in this article. The national chapter website lists all the chapters and links to their websites. That's sufficient for our purposes. -- Kbh3rd 07:20, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

Copyright?[edit]

The History section sure looks and smells like a cut-and-paste job, and some durn similar text can be found elsewhere on the net. If this is copyrighted material, it will have to be removed. Someone needs to do an original version. -- Kbh3rd 04:18, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

Largest Fraternity in the Nation[edit]

"Today it is the largest college social fraternity in the United States." That's incorrect. That distinction belongs to Sigma ALPHA Epsilon, or SAE.

  • From SPE's website (sigep.org): Currently, over 14,000 undergraduates in 260 chapters are members, making SigEp the largest national fraternity.
From SAW's website (sae.net): The current structure includes more than 8,200 undergraduates at more than 200 chapters
Looks like Sig Ep wins hands down, unless you can think of another metric to measure size by. -Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 23:36, 16 February 2006 (UTC)

In total number of initiates, it's SAE, in total number of actual current undergrads, it's SigEp. Total number of chapters TKE --† Ðy§ep§ion † Speak your mind 00:07, 17 February 2006 (UTC)

  • Cool, ive updated it to reflect that. Thanks. -Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 01:27, 17 February 2006 (UTC)

Does anyone have this info on one website possibly a third party one so we can get rid of that [citation needed] tag in the article?Trey 05:34, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

(ACTUALLY that only weighs true because TKE is international.. the TKE chapters in the US are fewer in number to SPE... SPE wins again —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.182.214.23 (talkcontribs)

TKE doesn't even have that many chapters in Canada. Currently, Phi Delta Theta has the most in Canada with only 10 chapters. (Canada has never been fertile grounds for any fraternity). The reason why TKE has so many chapters is because of their aggresive expansion policy in going into little known colleges. --† Ðy§ep§ion † Speak your mind 01:06, 23 November 2006 (UTC)


Sorry, but im removing any reference to largest fraternity as these numbers are cited to first party sources, and are obviously unreliable and biased. You can't cite the fraternities website for a competitive claim such as "largest fraternity" unless you have some sort of unbiased third party citation. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.65.91.197 (talk) 06:59, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

please see the wiki project talk page before making such major changes. it is first party cited but it is monitored by other fraternities. the numbers have been updated several times to reflect new status such as sigep losing ground in its retention rates. If sigep was making a false claim it would be trumpeted by every other fraternity in the nation. this has happened several times in the past. And finally you go and find a third party source. If you do bother to try you'll find that sadly few to none exists for Greek organizations and so we rely on first party from official easily accessed sites.Trey (talk) 01:25, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Verifiability#Reliable_sources

Articles should rely on reliable, third-party published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy

Self-published and questionable sources in articles about themselves Policy shortcut: WP:SELFPUB Self-published and questionable sources may be used as sources in articles about themselves, so long as:

the material used is relevant to their notability; it is not contentious; it is not unduly self-serving; it does not involve claims about third parties; it does not involve claims about events not directly related to the subject; there is no reasonable doubt as to who authored it; the article is not based primarily on such sources.

The claim of largest Fraternity falls under two of those standards. It is obviously contentious as the talk page shows, and it is unduly self-serving as it serves as a recruitment tool for the fraternity. The fact that there are no third party sources does not excuse the use of a poor source. As Fraternities are organizations that compete with each other in terms of recruitment, it is not fair or encyclopedic to include such a claim.

and so i assume you have taken this editing to every other fraternity and sorority and historically black organization that makes this claim. you will note that TKE makes this claim being the largest by chapter a easy fact to verify by counting the number of chapters listed in comparison to everyone else. SAE makes this claim by bing largest in alum and members combined not as easy to verify but still not difficult. and Sigep has claim to the largest in active members. Count them. Serious if Sigep TKE or SAE were not the largest it would be shouted from every other chapter site there is. until you start challenging Alpha Phi Alpha's claims TKE SAE's and whom ever the larges sorority is I'm putting SigEp's back in. It is true and it is encyclopedic. thats like forgetting to mention that China has the highest population.Trey (talk) 16:23, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

The Sig ep page is the only one I am editing, so it is up to you to correct these other websites if you care so much. China has had census done by outside organizations to asert such a claim. Sig ep has not. There is not official policing that you are referring to (in terms of other fraternities trumpeting a false claim). Until you come up with a legitimate site, I am removing the claim. Asics4381 (talk) 04:17, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

so first you should see the discussion on the Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Fraternities and Sororities since your interested in greek sites. check the end of the talk page for where i'm currently at. now so if i add the according the sigep claim will you be ok with it because i have no problem doing so. but the info should be there. as of 2007 Sigep is the largest. go to any college campus ask any greek life member you'll get confirmation. Sigep in current members TKE in chapters and SAE in total roll numbers overall. see my comments on the project page and yes i call you the editor sorry about that. really i would love to have 3rd party sources but the fact is they don't really exists and this info is critical (i believe) to wikipedia. so i don't want to see it gone. Its not that I'm a sigep. hell i hardly care my old chapter has went to hell anyways but if i was some one researching info on Greek life i would think size would be an important fact to meTrey (talk) 04:56, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

I read the discussion plenty of times and it still does not make up for the fact that the claim is unduly self serving (for recruitment purposes) and it is contentious as you can see in the history of this discussion. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Asics4381 (talkcontribs) 07:12, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

your going to start a revert war with this and i don't feel like being in one with you. its not self serving, the numbers are not contentious, they are easily checked and updated often. its not for recruitment purposes it makes no claims that being the largest is a great thing if it was the smallest fraternity that would be there instead as proved that the rank of the other numbers have been downgraded (we used to have the best retention rate). And the fact that your only bothering this page and not all the other pages that i pointed out to you that are using exactly the same method of citing and making the exact same claim nor are you disputing any other first party sources on this page smacks of bias on your own part. You also have made no helpful contributions or suggestions on how to resolve the problem. the discussion on the project page is also not contentious every editor whom has written anything has agreed that there is no alternative source that makes much sense and its not a big deal anyways with the exception of you. The numbers in real life are also very well known and anyone even remotely familiar with the subject matter will confirm them. i have offered some solutions to the problem, we can cite the NIFC page a third party source but one that probably gets its numbers from the chapter site (oh the horror) if we can find a news article we would cite that but guess where they would get their numbers... but if that will make you happy hey its your silly battle. Or we can qualify the numbers and the cite with a statement but you have ignored these offers and stayed on your one track set. I'm not going to re-write the passage or cite another source for you to dispute if your just going to delete it. Trey (talk) 13:54, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Building Balanced Leaders... =[edit]

"Building Balanced Leaders for the Worlds Communities" is the Sigma Phi Epsilon mission statement, not the motto. Sigma Phi Epsilon does not have a public motto. -Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 03:34, 1 July 2006 (UTC)


Is there a way to change "motto" to "mission" then? That would make the most sense to show up in that space. Thanks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Gennert (talkcontribs)

Not within the constraints of the current fraternity infobox. If someone knows how to change that perhaps. As it stands now, just including the mission statement as the motto is highly innaccurate, especially since most other fraternitys have both. Also, IMO, the founding principles (virtue, diligence, brotherly love) are closer to what other fraternities have as a motto than the mission statement, and that is already in the infobox-Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 00:58, 15 July 2006 (UTC)

Isn't the motto of the fraternity just "Sigma Phi Epsilon?" That's what I got when I searched around on sigep.org. We know what it means. -Vandymorgan (talk) 10:22, 21 November 2006 (UTC)

I'm going to add that as an option to the infobox, I'll post on your talk page when I get itr working Stealthound 16:34, 21 November 2006 (UTC)

I've heard that the motto is "This fraternity will be different..." by Carter Ashton Jenks Puffy1632 07:06, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Uncited Information[edit]

Please do not add unverifiable information on Sigma Phi Epsilonto this page to any other page—Preceding unsigned comment added by Treyt021 (talkcontribs)

  • Beyond respect, fraternity secrets are inherently unverifiable, and as such, violate wikipedia policy. -Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 00:56, 15 July 2006 (UTC)
    • The secrets are in fact verifiable. You might look at your chapters ritual book. It goes into pretty good detail. And they can start to float around. I'm also unsure why this is not fit for an encyclopedia. It is important information about the "meaning" of the fraternity. It add character and flavor to the article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 157.242.130.70 (talkcontribs)
      • As far as i know, any "ritual book" you're talking about is itself speculation- No search I've tried turns up anything for a Sigma Phi Epsilon Ritual Book. Feel free to take a look at the wikipedia verifibility policy at WP:CITE. Whether it is fit for Wikipedia to publish such "secrets" it questionable enough even if it were provable fact, but since it doesnt even meet the WP:CITE standard, that question is, for now, moot. If you have a copy of whatever book you're talking about and can provide the reference, by all means go ahead.-Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 21:41, 13 November 2006 (UTC)
        • It's also not public information. Just like we wouldn't publish detailed information about how to build an atomic bomb, so we should not publish this information.-Vandymorgan
          • Well, that comes back to the "questionable" part. Assuming it were substantiated somehow, it would come to the question of whether we can publish "secret" but verifiable information. This is up for debate and there is, AFAIK, no policy nor law applicable currently. However, as long as it remains unverifiable, it is clearly in violation of WP:CITE.-Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 22:35, 13 November 2006 (UTC)
            • I've been following this and I think it is in poor taste to print the ritual, but atomic secrets... seriously. I don't know if I would put it at that level. And everyone needs to spend less time on the internet and go met girls.—Preceding unsigned comment added by 208.54.15.129 (talkcontribs)
              • I just recently attened a conference for SigEp and the question about if whether or not fraternity or sorority rituals were in the Library of Congress. It's a myth - the rituals of greek organizations are legally protected and private, similar to rituals of freemasonry and other societies of that sort. Puffy1632 07:08, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Motto[edit]

I'm not going to add it right now becuase their has been some contention over this issue but the motto of SigEp is "Sound Mind Sound Body". However the pledge based chapters would not call that their motto nor would alum from any chapter if they graduated before the late 90's. My thoughts are since their are vastly more balanced man chapters than Pledge and its national policly to convert pledge chapters to balanced man that it should be used as the public motto. Thoughts?--Trey 16:53, 15 July 2006 (UTC)

  • I object strongly to that. First of all, national policy is that NEW and re-activated chapters be Balanced, not to convert pledge chapters. And as you say, it is the motto of the Balanced Man Program even for the balanced chapters- its still not the fraternity motto even for them. VDBL is closer, but its still not correct. -Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 01:55, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Actually their policy is to convert pledge chapters they won't force you or come out and say it but they will encourage your conversion. I've been a member of both a balanced man chapter and a pledge chapter and trust me nationals says way different things to one group as to the other. In any case your right VDBL is not a public motto. But the Balanced man chapters do use Sound Mind Sound Body as a motto on their shirts and documents. I suppose until all the chapters are balanced man we just won't have a public one.--Trey 03:28, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

History changes?[edit]

I took out this line "Ron Brown was the first African-American member of Sigma Phi Epsilon. Upon learning of Brown's membership, the National Headquarters of SigEp demanded that the chapter expel him or face closure of the chapter. The chapter declined to remove Brown and was shut down by the national organization." Thats a fact i'm pretty sure but it was put under the headline of "Additional Modern Programs". I removed it and left the note that it should be placed in the history. Then relized that it doesn't fit there either becuase its not a history of Sigep as a whole but just its founding. So i'm making the change to founding history and would like to add a general history that talks about all the other stuff pertaining to Sigep's past like ther merger and the loss of chapters and the Ron Brown tidbit. I dont'y have the time to work on it now. perhaps another kind soul would like to help? I'll be glad to provied any info. If not i'll get to it when i can.--Trey 05:33, 23 July 2006 (UTC)

I don't believe Ron Brown was the first African American to receive a Bid by a national (or international) fraternity. Augustus A. White, became a member of Delta Upsilon at Brown and graduated in '57.

Traditional Chapters[edit]

As a Brother in a Traditional Sigma Phi Epsilon chapter, I would like to clarify that the goals of all SigEp chapters are identical in that we aim to build 'Balanced Men'. However, the processes by which this goal is achived are different. Balanced Man Program chapters have guidelines set forth by national, while Traditional chapters have more freedom to plan a series of events and tasks that are more effective in building better men out of their specific members and enhancing their chapter's Brotherhood. It is also noted that if a Traditional chapter loses sight of its mission to build balanced men and misuses its relative freedom, and is shut down by National, it can only come back under the Balanced Man Program.

Also, note that "Traditional" is a more accurate label for chapters that have not chosen to or been forced to adopt the Balanced Man Program. The SigEp experience does not center around the pledging process, but around an unstratified Brotherhood. I'm sure that current Traditonal SigEps and alumni will appreciate if you use this label instead of the misguided "Pledging Model" label.

Don't really agree with your assertions. I've been a member of both balanced man and Traditional and as far as flexabilty and guidelines go there is no contest Balanced man allows way more and i would say much more effective but thats an argument as old as the BMP and not suited for wikipedia. However, what is wikipedia suited is the lable that we refer to ourselves and on that matter i agree 100% that "Traditional" is a little more P.C. than "pledge based and is more descriptive so i'll support you on that matter.Trey 18:23, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

No Public Motto[edit]

Hey, this has been discussed before above, but I just wanted to bring it back up- I've removed "Building Balanced Leaders for the Worlds Communites" from the infobox "motto" entry for about the billionth time ever, because it is NOT the Sig Ep motto, it is the MISSION STATEMENT. Likewise, "Sound Mind Sound Body" is the BALANCED MAN PROGRAM MOTTO, not the sig ep motto. Fraternity mottos are traditionally phrases which their letters are derived from, and many organizations have a public and private motto. Sig Ep does NOT have a public motto. Putting either of the others in the infobox is incorrect. So lets either figure out how to remove it from the infobox, or leave it as "no public motto". Either way, please stop re-adding it without discussing it first As always, open to suggestions. Thanks.-Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 02:37, 10 September 2006 (UTC) Is there anyone whom has the skill to change the infobox to say mission statement either in place of the motto or as another section. It just seems every few days someone comes along and adds it so obviously many people myself included would like to see it. However let me stress i do agree that "Building Balanced leaders..." is in no way the motto nor should it be presented as such. Trey 03:23, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

Unreferenced tag/rating of article[edit]

I was going to do seperate fact tags but everything within the section I tagged was not sourced at all. I am also not so sure about rating this article as a B. While I think it is somewhat extensive compared to many articles it needs a lot of cleanup, some NPOV and some wikilinks, but mostly prose. Also, half of the article is the alumni list, which should get its own page and should be cleaned up of redlinks and unnotable people. If somebody agrees with me about this please change rating to start. Acidskater 01:51, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

I don’t agree with your un-sourced tag for the balanced man section. In the first half of the balanced man section all facts have been previously sourced such as the 90% retention sourced in the first paragraph of the article. The second half is simply a description of how the program works taken directly from the “Life Time Responsibility of Brotherhood” book and the “Quest” written by someone who has went through it. So unless you want to point out specific problems then I’m going to remove it. I by no means think there might not be problems it’s sometimes hard to see them in what you have written yourself, but pleas don’t just throw up the tag with no indication to what you think needs improving. As for the rating, I think a few weeks ago it was a B class no doubt and one of the more extensive articles on a fraternity but with the improvements made to other Greek life pages it might deserve to be down graded to start i'll wait a while longer before doing so to see if anyone else wants to comment.Trey 02:52, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

Adopted at the national board meeting in April of 2009 is the Fraternity's new simplified mission statement: Building Balanced Men. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 99.159.58.61 (talk) 05:11, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

RfC: Is citing of first party sources acceptable when making competitive claims?[edit]

Claiming that Sigma Phi Epsilon is the largest social fraternity in the nation is a competitive claim. There is no third party sources available most likely to assert such a claim, thus the original poster has used the fraternities own website as the source for said claim.

Are there any other fraternity sites making the same claim? If so, they i believe it becomes a problem and another source should be used. Chrislk02 Chris Kreider 14:18, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Sigep claims largest by current members. SAE claims largest by total initiates. TKE has the most chapters. each organization qualifies their claim thusly and i have never so far seen this disputed every organization's web page posts their numbers which are used officially in reports and for insurance tax and banking purposes. the problem is their is no third party organization that posts these facts other than the National Intrafraternity council which just takes their numbers from the organization's webpage. if its good enough for them it should be ok for us. i mean serious its not like we are dealing with some hanging chads and voter fraud here its a Fraternity reporting its numbers.Trey (talk) 17:28, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

As long as no two fraternities are making the same claim, i dont see a problem. Chrislk02 Chris Kreider 18:23, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
I also don't see a problem with it when no other organization is claiming something to the contrary. I would have a problem if it unqualifiedly said "largest fraternity." Bajenkins (talk) 04:10, 10 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Any such claim unsupported by third-party evidence should be qualified as coming from the entity involved. In other words: "Sigma Phi Epsilon is the largest social fraternity by membership" needs strong sourcing. "Sigma Phi Epsilon claims to be the largest social fraternity by membership" can be sourced to SPhE. Powers T 14:32, 12 May 2008 (UTC)
  • RfC response: (1) Alpha Phi Omega - "largest fraternity in the nation as well as the largest collegiate-based service organization in the nation", (2) Clarion University News - "Sigma Phi Epsilon (SigEp), the largest fraternity in the nation", (3)Baylor University, The Lariat Online - "Sigma Phi Epsilon is the largest fraternity in the nation in terms of undergraduate enrollment", (4)Alpha Alpha Chapter at UIUC - "APO is the largest fraternity in the nation". Conficting information presses my opinion toward removing the claim, or only stating they claim to be themselves (which, as Powers points out, is acceptable). Faith (talk) 14:41, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
    • 2 of those appear to be news sources of some sort (the ones supporting the SigEp claim). The other two are fraternity sites supporting the claim. I see that multiple sites conflict, but if the news source were to be used, that should be more reliable than the SigEp source. Chrislk02 Chris Kreider 15:09, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
    • Without meaning any offense to the sources, I don't think college newspapers really meet the reliable third-party source criteria. That said, given that no other fraternities seem to actively contest the claim (and the number of published members for each of the others isn't higher), I don't see any problem including it, particularly if we rephrase it as discussed above. -Lanoitarus (talk) .:. 15:31, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
  • not sure if it is relevant but in that particular case there is also the classification fact APO is a co-ed service organization while SigEp is a social Fraternity. that might eb a distinction that needs to be made on either claim. And i agree school news papers i think are not really reliable since i can almost assure you that they got their numbers info off the very national websites we are questioning. Trey (talk) 17:14, 13 May 2008 (UTC)
  • I intended them only as illustration that the claim is a fluff claim used by several different groups. Obviously they didn't meeet RS for the article.--Faith (talk) 18:56, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

Wikileaks of fraternities' (alleged) ritual manuals[edit]

I bring this matter here, because there's currently no discussion at the project level but is discussion at another fraternity's talk page.

Text has been added to the Sigma Alpha Epsilon article about the leak of what is purported to be their ritual manual on Wikileaks.org. A perusal of http://wikileaks.org/wiki/Category:Cults_and_religious_organizations reveals about a dozen leaks of alleged manuals for fraternities and sororities. Of these, Sig Ep stands out because a takedown notice is also on the site, where Sig Ep's legal counsel directed Wikileaks to remove the "copyrighted material…created by members of Sig Ep." While it is a primary source, it is also an admission that the material on the website is owned by Sig Ep—and, it stands to reason, authentic.

My preference would be to not include the leaks on any fraternity articles. Discussion at the SAE page is at an impasse with no compelling arguments to remove the information. If the addition stands on that article, it will likely get added to the other leaked fraternities, as has already been suggested there.

Accordingly, I invite editors of this article interested in this issue to join the discussion at Talk:Sigma Alpha Epsilon#Wikileaks publication of ritual book—or, for matters specific to the Sig Ep leak, to begin discussion here. —C.Fred (talk) 17:52, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

An anonymous editor posted the link to Sig Ep's ritual manual today. However, because of the aforementioned takedown notice, the link must be removed from this article. Links to copyright-infringing text are links never to be added to articles. —C.Fred (talk) 07:31, 20 December 2009 (UTC)