You don’t have to attend the University of Alabama to know that it’s a school dominated by Greek Life. 29% of men and 38% of women enrolled in the school are members of social fraternities or sororities. In recent years, due to growth in the student population and an increase in interest and involvement in Greek Life, the University of Alabama has sought to bring new fraternities and sororities to campus and build new houses.
The UA Board of Trustees has signed off on a plan for the construction of a new house for Phi Kappa Psi. In all, the house is supposed to cost $6.2 million. The school is providing a $4.6 million loan to help the fraternity pay some of that. Interestingly, the athletics department is going to contribute $1.2 million towards the construction of the house.
Some of you might wonder why the athletics department is contributing to the construction of a fraternity house, but to me, it’s simple. In giving money for the construction of a fraternity house, Alabama athletics is not making a donation. They’re making an investment. Also, the fraternity is relinquishing some property rights near the bustling north end of Bryant-Denny — in turn, a check for 1.2 large.
University spokeswoman Cathy Andreen said the contribution is due to the fraternity’s cooperation in giving up their property at the north end zone of Bryant-Denny stadium. The new house will be constructed across campus on University Boulevard.
The University of Alabama, unlike many other schools, recognizes the importance of fraternities and sororities. They understand that that’s where the big bucks come from. Two weeks after the school suspended all pledging activities in Fall 2012, president Guy Bailey stepped down. Who replaced him? Judy Bonner, a Delta Gamma and University of Alabama alum. Some believe that she was chosen because she would be more pro-Greek than her predecessor and thus more likely to solicit donations from powerful Greek alumni.
I’ve digressed. Back to the house. So, Phi Kappa Psi is getting a $6.2 million house? I’m no expert, but I imagine that with $6.2 million, you can get a lot. With that kind of money, I obviously expect a beautiful exterior, three stories, and a spacious basement for “activities.” I’m sure the house’s chapter room is going to be incredibly ornate, too. All that is good and fine, but it’s the added accessories that are going to make a difference.
Now, if I was the one planning what some of the money would go to, here’s what I’d do. First off, you want a huge veranda. I know big porches are the style down there, but you’re going to want the biggest one. Next, you need to have a rooftop patio. It can be big or small, but the possibilities are virtually endless when your house essentially has a viewing platform on top of it. Of course, the house is going to need a great bar. I don’t know what Bama’s rules are about bars in the houses, but fuck it, you need a great bar. As a matter of fact, you probably need more than one bar. Look into that.
I could go on for a long time about the various accessories and amenities this new house should have. With $6.2 million, I’m sure the men of Phi Kappa Psi are going to get a great house. Personally, I’m interested to see what the new house will look like. Not to jinx it or anything, but have you heard about Virginia Tech’s Sig Ep? Don’t screw this up.