Can a secret society even get a break around here these days? We dug through some secretive, but not private, semesterly newsletter updates from the national St. A’s organization, but the findings weren’t terribly exciting. Then again, St. A’s isn’t all that secretive to begin with, and all of these documents are available publicly on their website.
Selected tidbits are below, going back to 2010, and with class years described by year of induction, not of graduation. We basically learned that they love their chairs, holiday parties, and fancy speakers. And some specific names and membership levels we hadn’t known before. Click on the semester to see the full Alpha section of the newsletter.
- They’ve got a new garden: “Sis. Stephanie Nass A’10 has planted a garden on our roof, a welcome addition to Alpha’s favored location in the warmer months.”
- There are lots of athletes in St. A’s right now: Last spring’s inductees “doubled the number of athletes, and of rowers in particular, among the current membership of the Alpha Chapter.”
- They help the local and global community: They donated money to “a range of charities benefitting public education, lyme disease research, and children embroiled in the Arab-Israeli conflict.”
- Membership at 35, but with “quality over quantity.”
- Athletes include:
- Danielle Cosentino A’10 Field Hockey
- Phillip Fletcher A’11 Crew
- Clemens Auersperg A’11 Crew
- “The spring semester brought Senior Biographies, L.D.s that members of the senior class present at Thursday meetings, which never fail to impress, inspire, and demonstrate the literary prowess of our own brethren.”
- What to do with a surplus of money? Preserve history—potentially “increasing our storage space for literary and historical documents so that we may safeguard our history for years to come. We have also recently secured the much-awaited return of a stack of Fraternity document.”
- WASPS-y speakers: “Last fall’s lecture by Professor Robert McCaughey titled ‘The Shrinking WASP’ discussed changing admission standards at Ivy League universities.”
- “We are having an excellent semester this fall.”
- Membership was at 33 with the seven new members of the 2011 class.
- Members included the editor-in-chief of the Columbia Undergraduate Journal of History, one of Austria’s under-23 crew team, and a NY Times-published author.
- The original laundry party: “We have a new laundry room that already seems to be a happening scene”
- New chairs from an alumnus: “Those officers that did not yet have sufficiently distinctive seating immediately claimed the new chairs.”
- “The Alpha chapter looks forward to maintaining intellectual rigor, secrecy, constancy and devotion while improving upon 164 years of tradition.”
- Membership at 30, including seven new members. Voted in 11 new Friends that “who we hope will become new members in December.”
- “We have already raised close to $4,000 for various charities.”
- “We held our annual Homecoming event for New York area Hall Alumni on October 23rd. We hope this event continues to strengthen ties within the NY alumni network.”
- Aren’t they supposed to be loaded? “Alpha is financially and legally more stable than it has been in years.”
- Throwing ragers: “The annual Valentine’s Day party was more elegantly decorated and well orchestrated than I have ever seen.”
- Membership from Fall 2009 listed at 32, after the graduation of a whopping 20 members. “Last spring was not without its sorrows.”
- More alumnus-donated walnut chairs
- St. A’s, both graduate and undergraduate chapters, filed for tax-deductible status.
We were really hoping for more candlelit meetings and cloaked figures, so then we were not disappointed when we searched back to the 2006 archive and saw the below image:
There you go, St. A’s.