To: Undergraduates, House Corporations, Volunteers, and Officers
From: The Executive Committee
RE: Covid-19 Resource Review and Vetting Commission Recommendation
All guidance is in effect through December 31, 2020, unless further modified by the International Executive Committee.
The International Fraternity places the highest priority on the health and safety of its members and the communities in which they operate. Therefore, Chapters and individual members must follow all host institution, government, and health guidance and any chapter or member who willfully disregards this guidance, especially if found to have caused or contributed to COVID-19 infections on their campus or local communities may be referred to the appropriate International Fraternity Committee for potential review and sanction.
To ensure the success of the chapter it is strongly recommended that all chapters implement the following:
Chapters should also be fully aware that they have no liability coverage for COVID-19 related incidents meaning the Chapter, individual members, and officers could be held liable with no protection if an individual becomes infected due to the actions of the chapter or its members. Therefore, chapters must follow all host institution, government, and health safety guidelines and it is strongly recommended that Chapters implement the following:
Volunteers and Officers should refer to the COVID-19 Travel and Meeting Guidelines Memorandum issued by the Executive Committee halting all volunteer and officer travel through December 31, 2020. This guidance must be followed to ensure the health and safety of all members, especially since there is no liability protection for any volunteers and officers for COVID-19 related incidents. Any volunteer or Officer who willfully disregards this guidance, especially if found to have caused or added to a COVID-19 infection in the chapters or individual members they oversee and advise, may be referred to the appropriate International Fraternity committee for potential review and sanction.
Volunteers must continue to engage with their chapters and house corporations virtually regularly to ensure they are following health and safety guidelines as outlined throughout this document, have the necessary resources to be successful, and are supported through this challenging time.
Chapter House Corporations should reference the following breaking the chain of infection resource document and the Constantine Housing Initiative COVID-19 webpage for guidance related to every facet of preparing chapter facilities for the Fall. To help support the health and safety of the chapter and facility residents it is strongly recommended that house corporations implement the following outlined in the resources above:
For more resources and information please visit the Fraternity’s COVID-19 resource webpage and webinars webpage, the North Interfraternity Council Think Tank webpage, the Center for Disease Control COVID-19 webpage, and the World Health Organization COVID-19 webpage.
The North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) has created a Fraternal Think Tank comprised of leading industry experts to help provide guidance to the fraternal industry in preparing for the 2020-2021 academic year. We encourage you to review the Fraternal Think Tank resources at https://nicfraternity.org/thinktank/ to find in-depth advice on nearly every facet of the industry affected by Covid-19.
To learn more about how the Fraternity is implementing best practices and providing resources to support our chapters and individual members please join our upcoming webinars or view our past recording at https://sigmachi.org/home/news/sig-webinars/
Summer has traditionally provided an opportunity to facilitate gatherings, celebrations of our brotherhood and to deploy our flagship educational and leadership development programs: the Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop (TLW) and Horizons Huntsman Leadership Summit. As tracking the spread of the global pandemic continues to rightly keep our primary focus on health and safety concerns, causing major disruptions as an extension, Sigma Chi, like other organizations and industries has been forced into the undesirable position of reconsidering what we have enjoyed for so long as our cornerstone traditions.
This past weekend, the Executive Committee (EC) discussed the feasibility of conducting the traditional summer events schedule in light of the disruptions caused by the pandemic. The decisions made by the Executive Committee, listed below, were made after consultation with experts from the fields of epidemiology, higher education, interfraternal and the economy. In addition, the EC received and considered recommendations from the various operating committees who have charge over the planning and execution of our summer educational programs. We are grateful to the leaders and members of those committees — and especially to the board of the Sigma Chi Leadership Institute (SCLI) — for their incredible work.
1. Grand Council in two sessions:
a. A special session on June 27 for the purpose of electing undergraduate representatives to the Executive Committee for 2020 to 2021.
b. Defer the regular Grand Council session to early fall, on a date to be determined.
2. Horizons Huntsman Leadership Summit — Canceled.
3. Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop — Moved to virtual format.
GRAND COUNCIL – REGULAR SESSION
The regular meeting of the Grand Council, scheduled for June 27, 2020, is being converted to a special session on that date, with other business to be postponed to the early fall; date TBD.
The Teams meetings for the undergraduate representatives, Grand Praetors and Grand Trustees scheduled for separate evenings before the June 27 meeting will proceed as announced. Among other things, this will allow the undergraduate representatives to select their two representatives to the EC for 2020 to 2021.
As Grand Consul, I have interpreted that the Sigma Chi Governing Laws provide the flexibility for this rescheduling. We will be working again within the confines of our Governing Laws to set the timeframe for the rescheduled meeting of the Grand Council. Members of the Grand Council will hear from Executive Director Church as soon as the new date is set by the EC.
GRAND COUNCIL – SPECIAL SESSION
The Governing Laws provide the opportunity to the EC to call a special session of the Grand Council with not less than 30 days’ notice. While the regular meeting has been postponed due to concern for the health and safety of individuals who would be required to travel and gather in person, the EC is calling a special session of the Grand Council to take place virtually on the previously scheduled date of June 27, 2020, at 1 p.m. CT. The primary purpose for this meeting will be to facilitate the process for election of the two undergraduate representatives to the Executive Committee for 2020 to 2021. There will, of course, be a few other important items of business conducted and we will need all members of the Grand Council to plan to be present for this meeting so that we may still reach quorum. An agenda for this special session of Grand Council will be distributed to the members of the Grand Council shortly. Both the special session on June 27 and the full meeting to be held in early fall will be conducted electronically.
HORIZONS HUNTSMAN LEADERSHIP SUMMIT
The nature of our Horizons program is so tightly wound with an in-person experiential process of discovery and development that the Horizons Operating Board and SCLI jointly felt that a migration of this program to a digital setting would not be conducive to the high-quality learning experience that we all expect of the program. Therefore, the EC has regrettably decided to cancel all summer 2020 sessions of the Horizons Huntsman Leadership Summit. All members who were accepted into the program this year and who will still be eligible next year will be given first priority to attend one of the 2021 sessions. All members accepted to the program who will not be eligible next year will be exclusively invited to participate in a virtual session on leadership, facilitated by some of our best and brightest facilitators. Those accepted to the program will hear directly from our staff and Horizons leaders on next steps.
KRACH TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERS WORKSHOP
Since its first deployment in 1947, Sigma Chi’s workshop has been a flagship event for the Fraternity. Only once in our history since its initial deployment has the event not taken place due to extraordinary circumstances. After consulting with the experts noted above, the EC has determined that the risk of bringing together up to 2,000 individuals in August is simply too great of a public health risk and has, therefore, determined that, for just the second time ever, an in-person Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop is not possible. However, with sincere gratitude to the leadership of SCLI and Team Krach, we are pleased to announce that the primary learnings associated with workshop will be able to be delivered in a virtual setting over the course of several weeks later this summer. We are affectionately coining the delivery of this one-time-only, virtual deployment of workshop: vKrach TLW. The process for this workshop is an extraordinary effort of adaptation to unfortunate circumstances, but we are confident that the experience will lend itself to an excellent opportunity for the further development of our brotherhood.