Click here for a packet of The History of the Pennsylvania Sigma-Phi Chapter (updated Nov. 15, 2006).

For a list of Prominent SAE Alumni
please visit the following website, click here


The True Gentleman is the man whose conduct proceeds from good will and an acute sense of propriety, and whose self-control is equal to all emergencies; who does not make the poor man conscious of his poverty, the obscure man of his obscurity, or any man of his inferiority or deformity; who is himself humbled if necessity compels him to humble another; who does not flatter wealth, cringe before power, or boast of his own possessions or achievements; who speaks with frankness but always with sincerity and sympathy; whose deed follows his word; who thinks of the rights and feelings of others, rather than his own; and who appears well in any company, a man with whom honor is sacred and virtue safe.

- John Walter Wayland (Virginia 1899)


Facts about Sigma Alpha Epsilon

  • has roughly 205 active chapters, 12 colonies, and 175 alumni associations in 49 states and Canada.
  • has the Levere Memorial Temple, Fraternity Headquarters of SAE in Evanston, Illinois. It is the first Fraternity to have national headquarters and the first to build its own headquarters building; the Temple is the only national college fraternity headquarters to have a chapel.
  • has a National Leadership School. The school, started in 1935, was the first of its kind and has over 22,000 graduates.
  • has 28 alumni province archons who chair province conventions, regional leadership training schools, and chapter workshops.
  • has a fraternity magazine, The Record, published continuously since 1880.
  • has Educational and Leadership Consultants who visit chapters to assist with management and programming, especially scholarship programs.
  • has a student loan program to assist undergraduate brothers with their education.
  • has a Resident Educational Adviser Program to provide fellowships to graduate students who assist chapters with scholarship and career development programs.
  • has an Awards Program which recognizes outstanding contributions of SAE alumni, undergraduates, chapters and others to the development of individuals and to the betterment of life in their community.
  • has a strong Risk Management Program requiring all chapters to conduct dry rush, a strong policy against hazing, and pledge programs which enhance each individual's personal growth.
  • has a strong Alcohol Education Program and is constantly developing and updating programs for the responsible use of alcohol.
  • has a centralized computer system providing the Fraternity with automated financial and membership information as well as assistance with Chapter Operations and Alumni programs.


National History of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity

Sigma Alpha Epsilon was founded March 9, 1856; University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa. The mission of SAE is to promote the highest standards of friendship, scholarship, and service for our members based upon the ideals set forth by our Founders and as specifically enunciated in our creed. The Fraternity is on college and university campuses nationwide, acting as a guest of the host institution. The current structure includes more than 8,200 undergraduates at more than 200 chapters in 48 states and Canada. Alumni are active in more than 75 alumni associations.

SAE is North America’s largest social fraternity with more than 280,000 initiated members. Fraternal symbols include the lion, the phoenix, Minerva, and the fleur-de-lis. It was the first fraternity to establish a national headquarters (1929), a national Leadership School (1935), a national Men’s Health Issues Committee (1980), and a career-development program entitled the Leading Edge (1990). Currently, the Fraternity offers a comprehensive member-education program called The True Gentleman Initiative. The Fraternity communicates through The Record magazine, a quarterly publication that has been published continuously since 1880. New members receive a copy of The Phoenix pledge manual for educational development. Prominent alumni include William McKinley, Elliot Ness, David Spade, Phil Jackson, William Faulkner, Pete Carroll, Bob Ballard, General Richard Myers, Ernie Harwell, Tony Boselli, “Pistol Pete” Maravich, Beau Bridges, Ed McCaffrey, Fred Savage, and Nick Lachey.

The organization is governed through a five-person executive board (Supreme Council) that is elected at biennial conventions. An executive director (Eminent Supreme Recorder) supervises a staff of approximately 30 at the Fraternity Service Center in Evanston, Illinois, and eight regional directors. The United States and Canada are divided into 30 regions (provinces) overseen by regional volunteers called province archons. Each chapter is required to have an active chapter adviser.

Lastly, the SAE Foundation, which is related to but different than the Fraternity, is a non-profit organization that was established in 1927. Its focus has been to create programs that promote the highest ideals of academic and personal development. The existing programs include named scholarships, a student-loan program and the international Leadership School that has produced more than 25,000 graduates. The SAE Foundation awards $30,000 in scholarships annually in support of its mission.

History of the Pennsylvannia Sigma-Phi Chapter

The Pennsylvania Sigma-Phi Chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon was established at Dickinson College on October 11, 1890. Chester N. Ames, along with the help of a few other founding members, established the Chapter. Other existing fraternities on campus at that time included Phi Kappa Sigma and Phi Kappa Psi. The members of SAE were involved on campus with clubs such as Belle Lettres Literary Society and were in honorary societies such as Phi Beta Kappa. Today, as was back then, the brothers are also involved in The Dickinsonian, a cappella singing groups, baseball, soccer, the Student Senate, among many other organizations. Also of note, in 1990, the Chapter celebrated it’s centennial – one hundred successful years - at Dickinson College. In October 1986, SAE was the first fraternity on campus to experiment in “Dry Rush.” Today, this system has been implemented by the entire Greek system at the college.

The Chapter has lived in various houses in Carlisle over the years. In 1900, the Chapter purchased their first house, a three-story building located just off the northeast corner of West and Louther streets. Throughout the early-1900’s they also lived in the eastern section of East College and a large Victorian house located on the corner of College and Louther streets. In 1946, they moved into a house on S. College Street. Later, in 1964, they lived in Quad 5 (now Baird McClintock Hall). From 1981 to 1990, they lived in Biddle House. Following that they lived in 424 W. Louther Street, which was later the house of the Theta Chi fraternity. Currently, the house is located at 527 W. Louther Street.

Prominent PA Sigma-Phi Alumni

  • Raoul J. Archambault Esq. ’42 (who was a candidate for Rhode Island governor)
  • George Gekas ’52 (who represented Pennsylvania’s 17th Congressional District from 1983 to 2003 as a U.S. Representative)
  • Sherwood “Woody” Goldberg ’63 (who is a Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army and a Trustee of Dickinson College since 1993)
  • Chiran Thapa ’63 (who is a master of ceremonies in the Kingdom of Nepal)
  • Stuart Pankin ’68 (who is an American actor that has appeared Curb Your Enthusiasm and was the voice of Earl Sinclair on the TV show Dinosaurs)
  • Charles “Chuck” Strum ’70 (who is an Associate Managing Editor at The New York Times)
  • Kenneth Berman ’78 (who is an Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University)
  • Howard Lalli ’90 (who has been an editor at Vanity Fair and The New Yorker and is currently Senior Vice President at Edelman).