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ΣΘΧ History

     The fraternity known as Sigma Theta Chi Alpha Chapter was founded in 1937 at Newark Normal School. Sigma Theta Chi was the first social fraternity to be recognized by the college administration. The school officially recognized Sigma Theta Chi in February of 1938 when the school officially recognized fraternities and sororities.

     The fraternity was created to promote fellowship, friendship, social-mindedness, and the support of college activities. The social disadvantages of being a commuter school was over come by the conveniences of a fraternity house and the annual gatherings such as the Spring Picnic, the Informal Dance, and the Formal Dance to which all students were invited. Each fraternal year was culminated by a formal banquet for the members of the fraternity and it’s honorary guests.

     Although an autonomy which was economically independent, the fraternity contributed greatly to the college life. With true college spirit the members donated the Sigma Theta Chi plaque for excellence in intramural basketball every year to the winning class team. Every year the fraternity would host picnics and dances that were open to all the students at the school to promote school spirit.

     Dr. John Milligan was the fraternity's first advisor and inspired the members since the organizations birth. Dr. Milligan and 12 men founded the fraternity. Norman A. Gathany (President), William F. Hummel (Secretary), Ambrose Corcoran (Treasurer), Henry Barone, Bizlewicz, Peter Cummins, Thaddues Garby, Clovis Gagnon, Thomas Gambino, Frank Gawenus, Louis Jacobus, and James McDermott were the founding brothers. In 1942 Dr. Milligan stepped down as advisor and Mr. Joseph D’Angola took over the position for the next decade. After, Mr. D’Angola would be honored by Kean University by naming their gym after him.

     The fraternity continued to grow through the fifties and sixties. In 1952 Sigma Theta Chi had the first African-American fraternity brother, Mr. T. Kroener. No other fraternity had a member of African decent. In the early 1960’s the fraternity officially adopted a crest adorned with the letters and a lion.

     On August 18, 1968; Sigma Theta Chi acquired “the old Harvey estate” on Jefferson Ave. Once the brothers found “the big white house on Jefferson” they began negotiations with Margret Harrigan and Mrs. G. Baker. They were the daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Harvey and had the house left to them. Through a lawyer, the brothers were able to come to an agreement and get the house.

     The house was a beautiful three-story structure built in the 1860’s. The outside was painted white and adorned with black and gold trim. Within two years of acquiring the house, the brothers had made remarkable improvements including an entire renovation of the first floor and bedrooms.

     The house served the brotherhood for over twenty years and was the legend that Chi was built on. Over the next few decades, other houses would add to the reputation of the Fraternity and would help the Fraternity to grow and prosper.

Remember the universal truth:
A winner never quits and a quitter never wins!