The Men of Principle initiative was established to further align Beta Theta Pi with its time-proven principles and obligations. In February 1997, the Board of Trustees appointed the Strategic Vision Steering Committee, 25 men and women, including collegians, to study the issues in the Greek community and chart a course for the future.
After ten months of intense work by the dedicated committee members, the Men of Principle initiative was born. Guided by the Fraternity’s principles and obligations, the committee developed a mission and vision, focusing collegians and alumni on Beta’s original purpose. The committee also identified nine goals which serve as guideposts for chapter programming. These collectively emerged as the Men of Principle initiative, implemented in the 1998-99 academic year with three strikingly different chapters at Nebraska, Georgia and Pennsylvania.
A higher commitment
The Men of Principle initiative is a commitment to the vision of our founders. A chapter that chooses to partner is making a public statement to pursue the Mission, Vision and Goals of The Initiative. Further, these chapters have committed to positive pledge education, alcohol-free recruitment and the promotion of the principles and obligations contained in the Ritual of Beta Theta Pi. It is a commitment to being who we say we are.
The Men of Principle initiative is an equal partnership between the undergraduate chapter, advisory team and the Fraternity’s staff/volunteer leadership. This partnership is grounded in self-governance and the principles of Beta Theta Pi to ensure long-term chapter success. From the outset, the Fraternity determined that the Initiative would never be used as a punitive measure. The Men of Principle initiative is not mandatory for chapters; chapters choose to partner. At least 80 percent of a chapter’s membership must agree to partner, along with 100 percent of the chapter’s five-person advisory team. In other words, people support what they help create.
An influx of resources
Adding form to the Mission, Vision and Goals of the Men of Principle initiative is an ever-evolving group of supporting programs within the Fraternity. These programs assist the chapter in living the Mission and seeking the Vision. The Fraternity works tirelessly to ensure that there is no division among its chapters. All chapters have access to the supporting programs. Partnered chapters are simply indicating an interest in increasing their support and involvement in the chapter, advisory team and the Fraternity’s staff/volunteer leadership. This partnership is grounded in self-governance and the principles of Beta Theta Pi to ensure long-term chapter success.
A framework for success
Men of Principle is not a cookie-cutter approach; it is not a manual to follow. It is a framework that facilitates complete ownership of the Mission, Vision and Goals. In essence, the higher commitment, partnership and supporting programs create a framework for success year after year.
Beta Theta Pi is dedicated to building men of principle for a principled life. Our brotherhood aids the individual, builds the Fraternity and strengthens the host academic institution through lifelong devotion to intellectual excellence, high standards of moral conduct and responsible citizenship.
Lifelong Friendship — Bonded by oath and ritual, Betas form lifelong bonds of trust and friendship which are the foundation of the Fraternity’s mission.
Cultivation of the Intellect — Beta membership encourages individual and chapter support of the academic mission and provides opportunities for co-curricular learning and personal growth.
Responsible Leadership — Betas participate in a system of self-governance, bound by trust and responsibility, which nurtures the development of social and leadership skills.
Responsible Social Conduct — Beta Theta Pi is committed to standards of social conduct which are guided by principles of urbane, civil, courteous and responsible deportment.
Commitment to Community — The experience of being a Beta encourages men to serve their university, fraternal and local communities.
Beta Theta Pi will be the exemplary standard for collegiate fraternal societies. Through implementation of Men of Principle, Beta will have successfully implemented policies and programs to achieve these objectives:
- Betas will be universally known as friends, gentlemen and scholars.
- Beta Theta Pi will be acclaimed and respected by the academic community.
- Beta Theta Pi will be endorsed by parents who will advocate membership for young men.
- Betas will be in high demand by leaders of business, government and the professions.
- Beta Theta Pi will engender bonds of friendship and brotherhood which create a lifelong commitment to serve and support the Fraternity.