Gamma Learns to Dance

With another successful year in the books, Indiana Gamma had many successes to reflect on and be proud of, having made great academic and social progress as well as recruiting two fantastic new member classes that show incredible promise. For one graduating senior, however, one part of his experience in the chapter stuck out like no other.

Kaleb Sullen graduated this year and plans to begin teaching physical education at Park Tudor School in Indianapolis, before eventually moving to teach abroad and join his family in Switzerland. Sullen joined the chapter as a sophomore transferring from Franklin College, and since then he has been heavily involved with the chapter as the serenade choreographer. Talking with Sullen about his time working on the serenades, his enthusiasm was evident, he called it “one of his favorite experiences at IU,” and “a great opportunity to meet each new member class and learn their persona.” According to Sullen, “We offer a less traditional serenade with more emphasis on dancing, and it brings something different to the table that sororities love.” He hopes to see the chapter continue to push the limits of their creativity long after he is gone and for everyone to “keep having fun with it, that’s the most important thing.”

Kaleb’s contributions to the chapter were strongly appreciated and the overwhelming sentiment is that he will be sorely missed. Speaking with freshman Brian LaManna, who played a major role in coordinating with sororities to organize the serenades, his praise for Kaleb echoed the sentiments of the entire chapter. “Kaleb Sullen is a class act” he explained, pointing out that “in a time when many seniors grew distant in their involvement with the house, Kaleb continued to step up and do meaningful work to help us, gaining everyone’s respect in the process.” With his help, both semesters of serenades were massive successes this year and Brian acknowledged that he had Kaleb to thank for helping make his job easy. “Serenades represent a great opportunity to spread our wings socially and meet some fantastic girls,” Brian explained, “but at the same time, just participating in serenades was such an exhilarating feeling. Being able to be goofy and grow closer with my brothers was such an incredible experience”.

Freshman John Graves will be taking over for Sullen as the main coordinator for serenades next fall, and with the recruitment of an excellent Xi class, there is no doubt that serenades will continue to be another aspect of what makes SAE Indiana Gamma unique and noteworthy on campus.

The serenade maestro himself, Kaleb Sullen

The serenade maestro, Kaleb Sullen


Gamma Gives Back at Indiana University Dance Marathon

Indiana University is well known for its philanthropic activity on campus, and the Indiana University Dance Marathon has become one of the main reasons for this recognition.  IUDM is a student organization that raises money for the Riley Hospital for Children, and this year, participants went above and beyond, raising over $3.2 million.  As the second largest student-run organization in the US, IUDM 2014 shattered the total from the year before by an astonishing $600k.

Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s involvement in this year’s event consisted of a large upgrade in the amount of participants, as well as in the amount of money raised.  Grant Schultz, a member of the Corporate Relations committee, raised over $17k on his own, earning him the award for the marathon’s highest fundraiser.  Although committee members’ totals do not officially count towards the team’s total, Grant’s representation of the fraternity did not go unnoticed as he received this prestigious award.

Gamma was a valuable member of the Green Team during the marathon, raising over $53k behind the passionate encouragement of Morale Committee member, Ian Baques.  The sophomore constantly expressed his enthusiasm for IUDM and its cause throughout the Fall 2014 semester, and his leadership, as well as the team’s commitment, eventually led to the chapter receiving the award for being the Most Improved Organization.

SAE Indiana Gamma looks to build on a great experience by becoming even more involved in the dance marathon.  Many members of the chapter seek to become committee members during the coming months, with more than 15 committees available for consideration.  With 2014’s edition in the books, Gamma looks forward to what will undoubtedly be another unforgettable experience at IUDM 2015.



Andy Wittry Commentates at Hoosier Hysteria

Andy with his broadcasting co-hosts.

Andy with his broadcasting co-hosts.

Each year, students at Indiana University look forward to Hoosier Hysteria, the first basketball event of the season. The 15,000+ fans that occupy Assembly Hall begin to line up in the early hours of the morning in anticipation of the chance to get a  preview of their beloved Hoosier basketball team. Hoosier Hysteria serves as a way to hype up the beginning of the new basketball season. Fans pile into Assembly Hall and spectate skits, a 3-point shootout, dunk contest, and scrimmage all which help to introduce the year’s basketball team to students. The annual event gives fans an optimistic view of the season-to-come.

Andy making a point to one of his co-hosts.

Andy adding in some more great information.

SAE’s own brother, junior Andy Wittry, had the great opportunity to partake in the operations of Hoosier Hysteria. Wittry was the color commentator for the event. Color commentators serve as the right-hand-man to the play-by-play commentator, providing extra facts and details about plays and giving statistics and biographical information about the players.

Andy Looking Fly

Andy Wittry: Announcer Extraordinaire

Wittry received news two weeks prior that he would be announcing Hoosier Hysteria. As a freshman, he saw a flyer near the journalism school that had information about broadcasting for the Big 10 Network. Since then, Wittry has broadcasted multiple soccer, baseball, and women’s basketball games. His work with the BTN has enabled him to work all three positions: play-by-play, color commentator, and sideline reporter. Although he is enjoying his time broadcasting for the network, Wittry plans to become a sports reporter upon graduation.   Our chapter is proud to have men like Andy Wittry representing us in such unique and interesting ways.

Brother Spotlight: Jake England

For this week’s Brother Spotlight, Pat Hodgman sat down with Jake England, a sophomore member of Kappa class who is also a member of Indiana University’s Air Force ROTC program.

Jake England Bro Spotlight

Why did you decide to join Greek Life?

I liked the structure that came with joining a fraternity. I also played sports in high
school and was a big fan of unity. I enjoyed being a part of an exclusive group of
guys who I could always count on and spend time with. Aside from that, I was the
only guy from my high school to attend IU so I did not know many people and this
was a great way to make friends that I could count on.

Why did you decide to join ROTC?

I have always had a passion to serve my country. It had always been a passion of
mine from when I was younger. I had initially planned on skipping college for the
time being and enlisting two weeks before freshman year began. I had spoken with a
friend who convinced me to look into ROTC, and it seemed to be the best choice for
me. Doing this, I would be able to obtain a college degree and become an officer in
the Air Force at the same time.

Brother Jake England is sworn into the United States Air Force.

Brother Jake England is sworn into the United States Air Force.

Why did you choose the Air Force over other branches?

Members of the Air Force typically have a higher standard of living so that helped,
but was not the driving force. My desired specialty is to be a Special Tactics Officer,
and the Air Force will offer me that opportunity.

How do you balance your Social life, Academics, and ROTC responsibilities?

It is extremely difficult. I have set a very rigid schedule for myself that is very
important to me. I get all of my studying done at the same time every day and do
my best to stick with it. With my busy schedule, I do not have much time to “goof
around” and it has kept me grounded.

Jake England (Center, back row) with other members of the Indiana University Air Force ROTC.

Jake England (Center, back row) with other members of the Indiana University Air Force ROTC.

How has being a brother of Sigma Alpha Epsilon helped you to succeed in ROTC?

This fraternity teaches you a lot about responsibility and leadership. There are
certain things that you have to take care of such as philanthropy hours and positions
to help the chapter to succeed. This has helped me with prioritizing as well as time
management. These traits are very important for my ROTC duties because it is very
time consuming and I do not want to have to give something up because they are all
very important to me.

How do you plan to relate your studies to the military in the future?

My major is Swahili. I also plan to join the Special Forces of the United States Air
Force. Most members of Special Forces know a foreign Language and it is very
important. Knowing Swahili will also give me special preferences when my time is
done in the military for Government jobs.

Fun Questions:

Favorite Song? Enchanted by Taylor Swift

Coke or Pepsi? Coke

Favorite Sports Team? Miami Heat

Left Handed or Right? Right

Brother Spotlight: Mitchell Sasseman

Mitch Sasseman, a brother in Iota class, was kind enought to sit down and talk with me this week.

Why did you join SAE?

I didn’t choose to rush in the fall of my freshman year based on preconceived notions about fraternities.  One of my friends got me to come to a rush event in the spring, and I saw potential for change in the house and the opportunity to lead was enticing enough.

What are you main duties at the house manager?

I’m in charge of the basic operations of the house, but more I’m in charge of keeping the house in good shape and coordinating meals, among other things.  I’ve also overseen major improvements under a new house director, including a basketball court and the new fencing project.

You’re in the investment banking program through the Kelley School of Business.  What’s the workload for the program like?

The investment banking program averages roughly 35 hours a week of commitments.  I can expect to do an investment case competition about once a week.  I’ve taken trips up to New York City and Chicago to look at different investing firms and determine which one is right for me.  It’s a lot of work and takes up a lot of my time,  but the employment opportunities and personal development outweigh all the negatives.

What are you expectations for the bike time?

Our goal for the season is to finish among the first pack of riders.  We improved from 18th to 8th last year, so we’re expecting a lot out of the team this year.  We lost three riders to graduation, but the team has enough depth that we can recover and expand on last year’s great finish.

A young Mitchell Sassemen gazing out towards SAE's bright future.

A young Mitchell Sassemen gazing out towards SAE’s bright future.

Some fun questions:

Favorite ice cream: chocolate

Favorite movie: Shawshank redemption

Best concert he’s ever been to: 21 Pilots

Best part about IU: “The foxy ladies”

SAEs Volunteer at Color Run

On Friday, members of Sigma Alpha Epsilon Indiana Gamma spent the morning volunteering at the Jill Behrman Color the Campus 5k.  The brothers worked from 9 AM until the race’s conclusion at noon, primarily at the water stations and as guides for the course.  The experience was rewarding for most, as they got to enjoy nice fall weather helping out their local community.  However, one brother was injured during the race as he was stung by a bee while volunteering.  While the bee’s intent is unknown, the brother’s spirits were not wavered, and he continued to hand out water despite this aggravating and terribly timed injury.

The race is done in memory of IU student Jill Behrman, who was killed during a bike ride.  The JB5k is in it’s 14th year and continues to be a big event at IU in the fall.
Color Run 1And now, please enjoy a full slide show of “Selfies Taken with Runners” during the race, by brother Ryan Nelson.

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Brother Spotlight: Femi Hollinger-Janzen

Femi Solo Shot brother spotlightFor the second installment of Brother Spotlight for 2014, we present to you Femi Hollinger-Janzen, a junior from Mu Class.  Femi is the starting forward for the Indiana University Men’s soccer team and won a national championship his freshman year.

Why did you join SAE?

I wanted to be a part of the brotherhood. I have heard very good things about SAE from my previous roommates, and now brothers, John Wahoski and Brandon Wynne. Last year I also had the pleasure of meeting several of the brothers when they came over to our place. They seemed like very genuine, good people. I wanted to get myself involved with these guys and get to know them better.
Femi w lion statue
What outside activities are you involved in at IU?

I am on the Men’s soccer team, so that takes up basically a huge chunk of my time.

Femi Hollinger JanzenWhat position do you play for the IU Soccer Team?

I play outside, withdrawn striker and target forward.

What factors allow for your team to keep competing at such a high level?

The mentality of everyday excellence, nothing else is acceptable. Go out everyday and get better is what drives our team, keep the person next to you accountable at all times.

How did it feel to play in and win a national championship your freshman year?

It was an amazing experience, could not ask for a better day. It will be something that is with me for the rest of my life, it was really a dream come true.

How do you plan on changing the attitude and status of SAE Rec Futsal and Soccer Teams?

I am not sure if I am allowed or will be able to participate in any other team due to my commitment to the Men’s soccer team; however, I do know that my presence within the chapter should really push the other guys to take their games to the next level.  I don’t want to be a part of a chapter that isn’t taking home titles.

Extra Questions:

Bone-in or Boneless Wings?


Favorite Professional Soccer Player?

Didier Drogba

Favorite Bloomington Restaurant?

Buffalo Wild Wings

Best part about IU?

Just getting to meet and get to know new people.

Photo Courtesy of Indiana University