By Melissa Ponton
Asst. Arts & Entertainment Editor
“¡Venceremos porque nacimos para triunfar!” or, in English: “We will win because we were born to succeed.”
This quote is the national slogan for LIU’s newest multicultural organization, Latino America Unida, Lambda Alpha Upsilon fraternity (Lambda).
On the forefront of Lambda is alumni Malcolm McDaniel, who graduated in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in speech language pathology and audiology. McDaniel tried to begin a Lambda chapter during his senior year, but was unable to meet the five initiated members minimum to become a recognized chapter. Now, McDaniel has decided to make another attempt at bringing Lambda to campus.
“I know right now at LIU Post there are no culturally based organizations,” McDaniel said, “so I definitely feel that representation is needed. Not just specifically for Latino organizations, but there are various underrepresented organizations that are not [a part of the] Interfraternity Council (IFC) [or considered] Panhellenic.”
Lambda is not only for self-identifying Latino men. It is open to all men who want to commit themselves to a cause that is bigger than themselves. While the organization’s forefathers were all of Latino descent, the members pride themselves on creating a diverse brotherhood.
“[While] we are a Latino based fraternity, we are not Latino exclusive. The beauty of my organization is that although [it is] Latino based, you still learn more about your own culture and the cultures within your member class,” McDaniel said.
Lambda Alpha Upsilon was founded on Dec. 10, 1985 at SUNY Buffalo by 16 men of diverse backgrounds. The group was founded on and still follows the “metas” (goals) of brotherhood, scholarship and community service.
According to Joseph Vernace, senior associate director of campus life, expansion within the Greek community is always a student-lead initiative. However, the processes for approval are different depending on the organization’s governing council. Because Lambda is a multicultural group, it has a different set of requirements in order to meet approval.
“Students that wish to bring a new cultural Greek organization to campus have to start by getting interest of at least five to ten qualified candidates for membership. From there, the University begins contact with the national organization,” Vernace explained.
“I highly encourage students interested in bringing Lambda Alpha Upsilon Fraternity, Inc., or any other cultural organization to campus, to complete the cultural Greek interest form,” Vernace said.
Opinions on this new fraternity range among the student body. J Fordsman, a sophomore psychology and criminal justice major, as well as a member of Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity, has mixed feelings about Lambda.
“I think it will benefit the campus, if only because it allows us to fulfill our National Fraternity Council and Panhellenic requirements. However, I know that multicultural organizations almost always die out. So I don’t have high expectations for this one to remain a fixed feature on our campus,” Fordsman said.
On the other hand, Storm Keeler, a freshmen art therapy and psychology major, has a different opinion.
“I think it’s great that there’s going to be a new Latino based fraternity, because culture-based fraternities and sororities often provide strong on-campus support and help bring more appreciation and pride to the culture they represent,” Keeler said.
Those interested in Lambda Alpha Upsilon can contact Mc- Daniels at malcolm.mcdaniels@ my.liu.edu or fill out the Greek Cultural Interest Form at www.liu. edu/Post/Greek. Lambda will also be tabling on Tuesday, Sept. 25, Wednesday, Sept. 26 and Thurs- day, Oct. 11 in Hillwood Commons.