Familia Fraternity

Published by The Critograph on March 1, 2017
Katherine Graves, Copy Desk Chief-

Lynchburg College students have started LC’s first co-ed Latino fraternity, Alpha Psi Lambda.

Senior Iris Perez and junior Fabian Miramontes helped start the fraternity together. Miramontes had already been in contact with Alpha Psi Lamba’s President of Expansion Gil Barrera when Perez mentioned to him that she was interested in starting a Latina sorority.

Instead of starting multiple Greek organizations, they decided to start the fraternity together. The group now has 15 potential members.

“It means the world, especially to me, because I’m so proud of my culture,” said Perez, whose parents migrated from the Dominican Republic.

Alpha Psi Lambda was the first Latino fraternity established in the United States. It was started at Ohio State University on Feb. 11, 1985, according to the fraternity’s website.

“Basically, it’s a Hispanic fraternity that has a lot of community service. One of their major values is community service within the school,” Perez stated.

Miramontes and Perez said that the fraternity will work with the Lynchburg College community and that they may also work with the Boys & Girls Club, the American Red Cross and Lynchburg Humane Society.

“We would like to work with any organization that focuses on service and community service as their main goals,” Miramontes said.

The fraternity puts an emphasis on Familia, describing themselves as “a support network” and “a brotherhood and sisterhood,” according to the fraternity’s website.

Miramontes, whose parents migrated from Mexico, stated, “Why it’s so important to me is because it allows for future generations of students of Hispanic heritage who come here to have somewhere to go … if they want to feel like they were at home or [feel] some kind of connection to home. They would have that on campus.”

Students do not have to be Hispanic to join, Perez stated. They can simply be interested in Hispanic cultures.

Students have until Friday, March 3 to join the fraternity this semester, said Perez. Students can join the fraternity next semester if they miss that deadline.

To join, students must be 18 years or older, not be a member of another social fraternity or sorority, have a minimum cumulative 2.5 GPA, be enrolled in at least six credit hours and not be a first-term first-year, according to the fraternity’s website and information brochure. Transfer and graduate students can also join the fraternity.

Students who are interested in joining Alpha Psi Lambda can contact Perez by email at perez_i@lynchburg.edu.

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