"Iota Phi Theta Celebrates Founders' Week"
By Kira Ward
Iota Phi Theta Fraternity Inc. was founded Sept. 19, 1963 at Morgan State College, now known as Morgan State University in Baltimore. Bowie State University's chapter, Mu Chapter, was founded in 1971. To celebrate their anniversary, the members planned a variety of events to take place on campus.
Iota Phi Theta kicked off their week with an "open mike" event dubbed "Golden Expressions," in conjunction with the ladies of Sigma Gamma Rho. Setting the mood for an authentic spoken word setting, the lights were dimmed and there was a live band to play during intermissions and also to accompany many of the performers. The hosts Jennifer Wood, a member of Sigma Gamma Rho, and Robert Woodard, a member of Iota Phi Theta, introduced performers while managing to add in their own form of entertainment in-between. Among the many acts were poets performing original poems about emotions, relationships, love and life. In addition, those with vocal talent serenaded the audience with classic selections that had the audience singing along.
Throughout the week they also held leisure activities such as a flag football, open to both women and men and a leadership seminar meant to strengthen BSU students as leaders.
Iota Phi Theta gave back to the community within their week by hosting the charity fashion show, "Persona," directed by member Shawn Moore, where proceeds went to sickle cell research. The show consisted of many young designers first introducing their lines and the influence behind them.
The first scene consisted of a lot of black, daring, and fitted designs, while the following scenes had an array of pastel, neutral, and even painted designs. In-between scenes, information about the raffle was given out, introducing the prize as a big screen television to be given out the next day. The DJ was also consistent in playing music, keeping the crowds attention and of course, urging them to do dance.
At one point show organizers called people from the audience up to show their modeling skills. They were asked to line up and walk to the end of the runway. Some were already clearly skilled in modeling; others were being good sports and trying something new. They let the crowd decide the winner by round of applause and the winner, a member of the BSU women's basketball team, was given a free raffle ticket.
The brothers of Iota Phi Theta and their sisters entertained the crowd by showing them a party walk that is done within their chapter. The event had a large crowd of college students and others to cheer the models as they walked in high heels and modeled very exclusive pieces that others perhaps would find hard to wear.
After the brothers of Iota Phi Theta reiterated the cause for the show and thanked everyone for coming out and supporting, the audience gave a standing ovation and left with a glimpse of the newest fall fashions.