As we step boldly into the start of 2024, I extend warm New Year wishes to each of you on behalf of the National Council and Leadership Team. The journey of this biennium has been akin to a spirited march, with its share of highs and lows, yet made all the more remarkable by the unwavering support of a resilient and engaged team. It’s easy to become overly fixated on the successes and failures, when the focus should be on the broader journey, emphasizing progress and growth. This is a path where preparation is key, but acknowledging the unpredictability and lack of control remains equally vital. As I reflect on our first quarter together, I am reminded of our fraternity’s 104-year journey and how the themes of purpose, persistence, and perseverance are as relevant today as they were throughout our organization’s history.
In the spirit of shared reflection, I am excited to share updates and highlights that pave the way for an inspiring 2024. While I understand the constraints of time, these monthly statements are crafted with the sole purpose of keeping you informed. The engagement, as always, is yours to embrace.
Update #1: “Friend & Advocate” Initiative
Last month, we introduced the Friend and Advocate Initiative, a program designed to provide personalized support to our chapters, regardless of their status. This initiative will equip Alumni members with the latest insights into Kappa Kappa Psi practices, utilizing resources like the Road to Wisdom and our Chapter Operations Resources to support and strengthen our chapters across the country.
If you haven’t already, we extend a warm invitation to our Alumni members to apply for the ‘Alpha Cohort’ of the Friend and Advocate Initiative. The application window remains open until January 10th, 2024, and cohort training is set to start in mid-February. To qualify for this program, membership in the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association is required. For any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Dr. Nicholas Rorrer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Update #2: National Executive Director Job Description
The search for our next National Executive Director is in full swing with the release of the new and comprehensive job description. This document outlines the responsibilities, qualifications, and expectations for this integral position. Your engagement is crucial in spreading the word about this exciting opportunity. We invite each of you to share the job description within your networks, communities, and among those who may possess the unique qualities to lead our Headquarters staff and operations.
You can access the National Executive Director Job Description using the link above. We encourage you to explore it thoroughly and, if possible, share it with individuals who align with the ideals and values of our organizations.
Update #3: National Winter Council Meeting
Every January, our National Council gathers for our annual National Winter Council Meeting, where we discuss and decide on important matters that shape our fraternity. One key focus is reviewing the status of chapters based on their reports and dues/fees. If your chapter hasn’t completed these submissions, we kindly ask you to do so promptly. If you encounter any issues with OPUS or need assistance with your report/funds submission, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our HQ at email@example.com.
Our National Winter Council Meeting is scheduled to take place between January 11-14, 2024, with Dr. Rorrer and me conducting the final round of interviews for our Chapter Field Representative search just days before. As we’ll be deep in meetings, please excuse any delay in responses during this period. For urgent matters, feel free to reach out to HQ.
Update #4: Upcoming Virtual Workshops
As highlighted in my communication from September 2023, our national committees will be actively engaged in providing a series of impactful virtual workshops, tailored to enhance the journey of each Active member. These sessions are designed to equip our members with practical skills and knowledge that will foster success within Kappa Kappa Psi, in their academic pursuits, and their future endeavors.
- Social Media Best Practices Workshop: Explore effective social media strategies for recruitment and service promotion led by our National Committee on Communications. Gain skills to enhance your online presence and strengthen fraternity bonds.
- DEIA Workshop for Chapters: Join the National Committee on DEIA for a workshop on fundamental concepts and practices. Deepen your understanding and implement impactful strategies as we enter the new year.
Stay tuned for more details on specific dates, times, and registration instructions. These workshops are tailored to empower you with practical knowledge and skills, fostering both personal and collective growth within our fraternity. Your engagement in these sessions will undoubtedly contribute to the continued success of Kappa Kappa Psi.
Highlight #1: Midwest Clinic
We were thrilled to return to Chicago for the 2023 Midwest Clinic, and delighted to share a booth with Tau Beta Sigma. Despite the absence of some affiliate organizations at the conference, we valued the opportunity to showcase our joint presence and programs alongside Tau Beta Sigma. A heartfelt thank you to Dr. William Lake, KKPsi VP for Professional Relations, and Dr. LaToya Webb, TBSigma VP for Professional Relations, for orchestrating the engaging group activity, The Goosechase, which added an extra layer of excitement (and competitiveness) to the event.
Throughout the conference, we experienced the joy of reconnecting with numerous alumni members, cherishing the chance to catch up and share memories. In a move towards financial responsibility, we made the decision not to host an alumni/director reception this year. While we understand that this news brought disappointment to many alumni and directors, we are eagerly exploring more cost-effective ways to foster a space for alumni to come together, celebrate, and strengthen the bonds of our fraternity. Please stay tuned for updates on the 2024 Midwest Clinic and other conferences.
Highlight #2: Congratulations to the Bands of the Year
The first annual Historically Black College and University Band of the Year national championship, held on December 15, 2023, at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, showcased the incredible talents of Division I and Division II HBCU bands. This inaugural event not only crowns season-long champions but also elevates the significance of halftime performances, making every show a vital part of the college football experience.
We extend heartfelt congratulations to the winners of the 2023 Band of the Year, the Blue & Gold Marching Machine (North Carolina A&T), and the ROAR Marching Band (Florida Memorial)! The dedication and artistry displayed by both of these programs reflect the impact and prowess of HBCU band programs across the country. We commend these programs for their exceptional musicality, showmanship, and overall brilliance. We take immense pride in having chapters at both institutions, and their achievements underscore the dedication and excellence that our fraternity represents. Bravi tutti!
Highlight #3: AEA Scholarship Recipients
In our unwavering commitment to “Striving for the Highest,” we recognize that excellence extends beyond the realm of service to others; it is also deeply rooted in our members’ success in the classroom and their academic achievement. We take immense pride in congratulating our outstanding AEA Scholarship Recipients who have demonstrated exceptional dedication to their academic pursuits.
- Jessica Alcorn
- Megan Ledgerwood
- Cade Skuse
- Ashley Swanson
- Christopher Allen
Their achievements stand as a testament to the multifaceted nature of our commitment to excellence, encompassing both service to others and personal academic growth. As they continue to inspire with their accomplishments, we celebrate their academic prowess and look forward to witnessing the positive impact they will undoubtedly make on the world. Congratulations to these bright minds, and may their success serve as a beacon for others to follow in their pursuit of excellence!
Highlight #4: Convention Dates and Locations
Save the dates and mark your calendars for our 2024 District Conventions and our 2025 National Convention! Stay tuned for detailed information on registration, schedules, and special events that will make these conventions memorable milestones in our fraternal journey.
- Northeast District Convention: March 8-10, 2024 | Poughkeepsie, NY
- Southeast District Convention: March 21-23, 2024 | Raleigh, NC
- North Central District Convention: April 5-7, 2024 | Fort Wayne, IN
- Southwest District Convention: April 5-7, 2024 | Wichita Falls, TX
- Midwest District Convention: April 12-14, 2024 | Des Moines, IA
- Western District Convention: April 12-14, 2024 | San Rafael, CA
- National Convention: July 15-18, 2025 | Lexington, KY
If you have not had a chance to read the full announcement yet, please take a moment to review it here: https://www.kkpsi.org/natcon25/
As we embark on this new year, I invite each Brother to pause, reflect, and celebrate their own personal journey through the past year. In the rhythm of leadership, service, and action, it’s easy to overlook the importance of intentional reflection. Like a compass pointing us forward, we must carry the lessons of yesterday as we march into the future. Our tools and knowledge may guide us, but the wisdom gleaned from our experiences is equally crucial. I am excited about the journey ahead and the opportunities for growth and excellence that await us in 2024!
Yours in Brotherhood & Service,
Bang T. Co
National President, Kappa Kappa Psi, National Honorary Band Fraternity
Life Member, Alpha Zeta Chapter at Indiana University