Greek Life

Student Affairs

Resources for Virtual Chapter Management

Updated as of 3/26/2020

It has become clear that we are in uncertain times, and that this will require new responses and new approaches to our daily lives as we adapt to changes associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. As members of the Greek life community, we are accustomed to change and certainly understand the need to evolve to meet the ever-changing demands of our society. Even with that understanding, Auburn Greek Life recognizes the era we are in is unprecedented and challenging. To this end, the Greek Life team has developed a one-stop shop of resources to help you navigate the era of virtual engagement. We hope the resources below will help you maintain a strong sense of belonging, connection, and passion as you navigate your virtual fraternity and sorority experience.  As always, the Greek Life staff and team are available to assist you and your members.  You may contact us directly at Greek@auburn.edu.


Meetings

Group:

Through Auburn University, all students have access to a pro-level Zoom account, which does not have time limits for meetings and allows up to 300 people to be on a single call. To access, click “log in with SSO” on the Zoom website, and type in “Auburn” for the website then you will be redirected to log in with your auburn credentials or sign in through https://auburn.zoom.us.

One On One:

Facetime, Android Video Calling, Skype, Google Hangout are all great for one-on-one video calls.

Member Management

  • Consider how to adapt the ways your members connect to the current circumstances. For instance, you could hold Zoom calls, use an app like Marco Polo so chapter members can stay up to date with each other, or watch Netflix together with the Chrome extension Netflix Party.
  • If you have a brotherhood/sisterhood/retention chair or committee, you can utilize them to check in on groups of members in the coming weeks. Consider hosting small virtual get-togethers. Split the chapter into smaller groups or even by new member class/line. Assign an executive board member to each of the groups and have them host/create programs for each of those groups based on what people are most interested in doing.
  • If you are reminiscing on your study time at the library, consider hosting virtual study sessions or have a standing open Zoom room specifically catered to study sessions. This will give you that great feeling of being in the library and encourage you to look at your books more than your timeline.
  • If your chapter had new members this semester, think about how you can intentionally reach out to them during this time. Excitement is often high after initiation, and you don’t want them to feel lost. Get them engaged with some virtual committees early on. See if there are any of them that want to continue to lead engagement for their new member class throughout this virtual period. Encourage them to utilize some of the same resources the chapter leadership is using to maintain chapter engagement.
  • Pair each member of the chapter together with someone they did not have a great opportunity to connect with throughout the year. Encourage them to connect at least once within the week either via phone or a video call. Check out this Randomizer to make your life a little easier when randomizing parings or small groups. Rotate groups around every few weeks or so. This would be especially great for newer members the chapter may not know as well yet.

Communication Software

  • Work with your advisor(s), headquarters or regional team, and/or council advisor, when appropriate, to ensure that official updates and communication are vetted and appropriate. Advisors are included on all communication and are great resources to help you manage the chapter and any questions that may be posed to you.
  • Consider free software that can help manage segmented communication. For example, Mailchimp can help you create specific communication to various groups (parents/families, chapter members, executive board members, advisors, etc.). Their free version allows you to create email templates and see who has opened your email and even clicked on the links you are providing.
  • If you want to create graphically stimulating content, Canva.com or even Gimp.org feature free graphic design software with templates to create your next masterpiece to share through social media.
  • Through Auburn University, all students have access to a Zoom account, which does not have time limits for meetings and allows up to 300 people to be on a single call. To access, click “log in with SSO” on the Zoom website, and type in “Auburn” for the website then you will be redirected to log in with your auburn credentials or sign in through https://auburn.zoom.us.

Communication Practices

  • Use preexisting forms of chapter communication (GroupMe, Facebook, email, Omega One, etc.) whenever possible to make the communication as seamless as possible.
  • It’s okay to say that you don’t know an answer or that the update does not address any concern – this is better than communicating information that you then have to rescind.

Chapter Management

  • Keep up to date with your national organization’s expectations of the chapter. These may be shifting rapidly, but be sure to keep your chapter in good standing.
  • Consider hosting virtual chapter meetings throughout this time to have the chapter connect with each other. Remember all of us joined our chapters for human connection. It is even more important in this time to continue to encourage positive connection through strong chapter meetings/programming.
  • Update all chapter websites and social media platforms to reflect the current chapter life. Incoming students, prospective students, and family members are looking at your websites and social media platforms to understand whether or not they are interested in joining your organization. Most websites are outdated and present very little information to the prospective member. Consider giving visitors to your website a better idea of what your organization values.
  • Should the chapter need to conduct a vote for business, consider compiling the information to be voted on and send to all voting members prior to the vote being conducted. Give members ample time to review the information you are sending over, preferably longer than 48 – 72 hours. Your chapter constitution & bylaws might already have a “reading” or “reviewing” period before votes or constitutional amendments can take place. Make sure to review those and stick to those even throughout this virtual period. You should ratify these votes at your next in-person chapter meeting in the fall.
  • Recruitment/Intake are currently scheduled to occur in-person. Chapters should continue to hold their planning meetings to prepare for new members in fall of 2020. Use this time to clean up your processes and hone in on the skills necessary for your chapter to have a successful recruitment period. Consider using Zoom to host recruitment training programs with your chapter.

Chapter Officers

  • The chapter’s executive board should continue to meet regularly via Zoom or other video conferencing software. Chapters are encouraged to establish a set time that works around every officer’s schedule and make sure everyone attends from week to week. Utilize other communication platforms in between video meetings.
  • Chapters should continue to engage chapter advisors in day to day chapter operations. Include advisors in the Zoom meetings with the rest of the executive board.
  • Chapter presidents are encouraged to meet with each executive board officer to discuss plan for completing position duties virtually for this semester while planning for upcoming semesters.
  • If any chapter officers will transition during spring 2020, consider modifying transition documents or creating transition documents for future officers. Contemplate hosting several virtual transition meetings themed to several aspects of chapter management (i.e. finances, marketing & communication, member engagement, etc.).

Planning

  • Think about what are things you always wish you had time to do, but never have the time to do so during the semester. Organizing think tanks, working on transition documents, brainstorming bylaws revisions, and cleaning up chapter files are all things that can now be more feasible.
  • This is a great time for you to research whether your (inter)national organization has an awards process and consider applying for one or all of the awards. Even if you choose not to submit an application for an award, your chapter can learn a lot from reviewing what is considered a great chapter by the standard of your (inter)national organization.
  • Your council advisors continue to be available to assist with chapter needs and goals. They will be reaching out to schedule bi-weekly chapter support calls. In the meantime, please reach out to them to schedule a Zoom call or feel free to contact them.
  • While major operations – like events and programs – have ceased, you can use this time for planning with your executive board or officer team for the fall semester. Start to lay the foundation for how you will engage the chapter within the first month of in-person instruction. You may have new members then and they may have all experienced this virtual period in various ways. Think about how to engage all these various constituents when you are all back in person.
  • Work with your executive board and chapter advisor to sketch out a return plan and priority list when operations resume. Construct your plan to be a day by day format with specific tasks and deadlines rather than specific calendar dates to allow for flexibility while accomplishing the tasks.

Resources

  • The health and wellness of the Auburn community is the Health Promotion and Wellness office’s first priority. Services are available for acute care and via telehealth. Visit http://wp.auburn.edu/healthandwellness/ for more information about services being offered.
  • The Auburn Counseling & Psychological Services will continue to offer services virtually during this time via Zoom, as well as, around the clock crisis, telephone support via 334-844-5123.
  • Headspace is a great app that is offering some fantastic resources involving mindfulness and meditation throughout this period of COVID-19.
  • Maintain, to the best of your ability, a schedule during the day. Tune into online classes at a table, desk, or outside instead of your bed or a couch to help with concentration and information retention.
  • The Campus Food Pantry remains committed to supplementing students’ nutritional needs and preserving food access. To ensure the Pantry can serve as many students as safely as possible, students can fill out this form, and the Pantry will be handing out bags on Thursdays on the concourse. Students can review relevant policies and sign up for an appointment slot by visiting the Auburn Cares website.
  • Campus Recreation wants you to find what moves you wherever you are. Staying physically active, practicing mindfulness or meditation, and spending time outdoors in nature are proven ways to stay healthy and happy. Visit the Rec Website or follow @auburncampusrec on social media for updates.
  • Down Dog is an app that provides yoga workouts at all levels. Down Dog is offering free access to workouts for students and teachers through July 1st when you sign up with your .edu email address.

Resources

  • Students may be feeling anxious, nervous, scared, lost, etc. It is the job of the advisor to be the steadying force for the chapters. This is a chance for all advisors to step in and be that calming force and to support the executive board teams to maintain a “sense of normal” as best advisors can for the students. The advisors should be reaching out to the executive boards to regularly check in and see how they can be helpful.
  • Ensure that you have signed up to receive AU Alerts at http://www.auburn.edu/administration/campus-safety/aualert/. This website provides the most up to date information on Auburn, and the Auburn University Homepage has the most up to date information as it relates to CODIV-19.
  • Your council advisors continue to be available to assist with chapter needs and goals. They will be reaching out to schedule bi-weekly chapter support calls. In the meantime, please reach out to them to schedule a Zoom call or feel free to contact them during their open office hours.

Meetings

One On One:

Facetime, Android Video Calling, Skype, Google Hangout are all great for one-on-one video calls.

Group:

Through Auburn University, all students have access to a pro-level Zoom account, which does not have time limits for meetings and allows up to 300 people to be on a single call. To access, click “log in with SSO” on the Zoom website, and type in “Auburn” for the website then you will be redirected to log in with your auburn credentials or sign in through https://auburn.zoom.us.

Resources

  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, counter tops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks Use disinfectants appropriate for the surface. Options include:
    • Diluting household bleach. To make a bleach solution, mix: 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water OR 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
    • Alcohol solutions. Ensure solution has at least 70% alcohol.
    • Other common EPA-registered household disinfectants. Products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims are expected to be effective against COVID-19 based on data for harder to kill viruses. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products (e.g., concentration, application method and contact time, etc.).
  • Please continue to monitor http://auburn.edu/administration/housing/ for on-campus residence hall announcements.
  • Prior to returning to your off-campus apartment, please check to ensure they will be open. Many apartments will have certain requirements and expectations for you to move-out.

Auburn University is closely monitoring the developing health concerns related to Coronavirus (COVID-19).  For the most updated information you can find related to Coronavirus and Auburn University’s responses and plans, please follow this link: aub.ie/coronavirus Call 334-844-1304 or email vpsa@auburn.edu with any questions.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) also offers information and guidance for prevention and treatment as well as precautions and resources.  You may find information from the CDC by following this link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

Last modified: March 31, 2020