Beta Mu Chapter was founded at University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado on April 5, 1901.
4,239 initiates (as of June 2018)
The frontier mining settlement of Boulder was still grazing land for wild game and hunting ground for the Arapahoe Indians when an act of the territorial legislature established the University of Colorado in 1861. It was not until 1877 that the university became a reality.
No state university could claim more humble beginnings. On the windswept plain of sage and buffalo grass a lone four-story brick structure rose incongruously to mark the campus. Two instructors, one of them the new presidents, and 44 students assembled that fall of 1877. It is significant that among the goals restated each year by that first class, none was more urgent than a sidewalk to town to escape the sea of mud. The goal was realized for the first Commencement.
Colorado has become a major university in a magnificent setting. Colorful sheer rock forms a backdrop for the buildings of Colorado sandstone in Italian Provincial architecture. "Old Main" still stands at the center.
By 1901 the campus had grown to a half dozen buildings, including a "Cottage Number One for Women, with Boarding Table". There were four national men's fraternities and two women's. A local group, the Althea Society, rejected by Kappa Kappa Gamma in an early petition, was inspired to two more years of work to meet requirements, and finally was so enthusiastically endorsed by the Denver Alumnae Association that the usual inspection by Grand Council was waived- the history of Beta Mu had begun.
On April 5, 1901, 19 young women in long woolen skirts walked to the tiny train station on the prairie, nearly swooning with excitement as the train pulled in, bringing members of Sigma. Kappa's grand secretary, May Whiting (Westermann), Sigma-Nebraska, was among the 20 who were to initiate Beta Mu's charter members.
It was a glorious occasion. The other campus Greeks had an afternoon reception, and there was a banquet at the Brown Palace in Denver. Initiation was at the home of Edith Delong (Jarmuth, Smith), a new member with a Pi Beta Phi mother. In 1974 a remarkable lady in Denver recalled clearly the events of the installation. Nettie Schwer Freed at 93 was Beta Mu's only living charter member. She was a two-year president of the early chapter, and continued all her life to bring honor to Beta Mu. Another initiate, (Mabel) Mae Carroll (Fry), first president, was to figure long and prominently in chapter history. First meetings were held in her room at the cottage, or at the Delong home, but by 1905 the chapter was able to rent a house at 1221 University Avenue, which was to be the Kappa house for nearly two decades.
Beta Mu's development paralleled that of the campus Panhellenic Society, founded in 1903 as a member of the National Panhellenic Congress. For a time it was possible to pledge in September and initiate in October; then pledges were required to pass the number of hours necessary to stay in school. Finally Kappa and other national sororities set their own requirements for initiation, in line with those established by the campus Panhellenic.
In 1914 Beta Mu was hostess to the general convention at Estes Park and Estelle Kyle (Kemp) was made grand registrar...later she became grand secretary and grand vice president and served as delegate to the National Panhellenic Congress.
Routine and traditions were swept away by World War I. Fraternity houses became barracks and coeds volunteered daily hours of work. By Commencement, 1918, all able-bodied men students had been called to arms and the class history was delivered for the first time by a woman, Beta Mu's Katherine Knisell (Cunningham).
Despite curtailed activities the chapter was to play a major part in Kappa expansion in the west helping with the installation of Gamma Beta in 1918. In time, Beta Mu played a part in the establishment of Gamma Omicron, Delta Zeta, Delta Eta, and Epsilon Beta Chapters.
Dreams of a permanent home began to take shape by 1920 when lots were purchased and plans made for the present house at 1134 University Avenue at a cost of $21,000. Mae Fry, at one time a member of the Colorado legislature, was president of the newly formed Building Committee, supervised house construction and furnishing, and continued her interest in the chapter for many years.
Others brought distinction at this time. Pattie Field was United States vice consul to the Netherlands (the second woman and the first from Colorado to be accepted in the diplomatic corps). Lucia Cassell Patton, illustrator, and Estelle Rust Dinwoodey, etcher, gained national recognition. Poet and scholar Irene McKeehan, Ph.D., was a distinguished professor of English at the University of Colorado for over 30 years. Boulder resident Margaret Read has had a long and eminent career as an architect and was the Fraternity architect when property in Florida became Kappa's Hearthstone in 1938.
Close to 75 per cent of Beta Mu's membership at this time was from Denver, the rest mainly from Colorado towns, providing a strong base in rush. Nearly every rush plan had been tried during Beta Mu's first 25 years and by the 1930s it had become a complicated system of summer parties and formal calls preceding the fall week of teas and dinners. Expensive decorations, costumes, and entertainment were required, and rivalry was bitter.
Increasing membership called for a house addition in 1939, a large recreation room which brought new informality to the Colonial structure. The Building Committee was now incorporated as the Beta Mu Building and Alumnae Association, and included dedicated Boulder alumnae (association chartered in 1937) among House Board officers.
In 1939 Dr. Robert L. Stearns became the University's sixth president and brought inspired leadership for 13 years. His Beta Mu family included wife (Amy Pitkin Stearns) and four daughters (Judith Stearns Caughey, Amy Stearns Goodell, Marion Stearns White, and Barbara Stearns Wooten). Dr. Stearns was keynote speaker at the 1940 Sun Valley Convention, and Beta Mu enjoyed one of its finest hours by winning the Standards Cup.
During World War II years Beta Mu instigated the equipping of all sorority houses as Red Cross relief stations, and limited social functions to buy war bonds. House decorations and Homecoming floats discarded in favor of patriotic decorations for the student union. To provide for the new Colorado University Navy schools an accelerated program was inaugurated. Students returned the end of October with a weekend for rush and the second day of classes for pledge day. Beta Mu sent gift boxes overseas and to Fitzsimmons Army Hospital in Denver, and during the campus drive for supplies for war-torn Europeans, assembled the largest contribution.
In 1946 Nettie Schwer Freed, after long service as a county superintendent of schools, was, at 65, elected Colorado State superintendent of public instruction. She served until the age of 70 when she received a special citation from the governor.
During the 1940s Dorothy Martin, Ph.D., began a distinguished career, becoming professor and chairman of the Psychology Department. In 1962 she received the Robert L. Stearns medal for superior teaching and exceptional service to the university.
Enrollment had soared at the end of the war and Beta Mu membership changed to 49 per cent out-of-state girls. Numbers forced a simpler rush- ice water teas replaced elaborate entertaining. Panhellenic urged affiliation and chapters grew top-heavy with pledges. Increased officer and adviser vigilance were called for. A special upperclassman retreat for evaluation began then and became a tradition. It was a difficult period but the chapter learned the art of assimilation.
During this time the Fraternity Council acquired two more Beta Mus. Eleanore Goodrich Campbell served as director of Alumnae 1948-52; and director of membership 1952-56. Josephine Yantis Eberspacher was Fraternity vice president 1952-54.
By Spring, 1956, the chapter was back on top, winning both the campus and Denver area Panhellenic Scholarship Cups, with the highest average ever attained by an organized group at Colorado University. At the 1956 Convention, Beta Mu was runner-up for pledge training, and two years later won the top award. The 1956 Convention brought the chapter its finest honor: Eleanore Goodridge Campbell was named Fraternity president.
By now the chapter was providing room and board for its first foreign student, from Norway. Since then others from Sweden, Hungary, Austria, Finland, Germany, Greece, and the Netherlands have made Beta Mu their home for a year.
With two rented annexes space was needed again, and by the sale of debentures to alumnae, another additon was made possible. Once again the house board was commended. The dedicated Boulder advisers, the two alumnae groups, and the Mothers' Club have together met every need of the chapter. Alumnae are kept abreast of active news by the news sheet, the Beta Mews.
Beta Mu is versatile, represented always in class honoraries, campus productions and publications, and class and university offices. Four have been president of the Associated Women Students, four have been name outstanding senior woman. Prizes fill the trophy case, with grand prize for Homecoming house decorations three successive times. With 14 queens and attendants in one year, Kappa's yearbook page was titled "Home of Royalty."
Beta Mu won the first Fraternity Appreciation Award at the 1960 Convention. Another winner that year was Wilfreda Heald Lytle who received an Alumnae Achievement Award for her work in civil defense. Earlier she had been name outstanding woman of Delaware and had been a member of the state legislature. By now four Beta Mus had been graduate counselors: Elizabeth Irvin (Farris), Marjorie Cross (Bird), Elizabeth Nelson (Hutchinson), and Colleen Jacobsen (Voshall). Three had been field secretaries: Marjorie Cross (Bird), Ruth Wierman (Hamilton), and Judith Ann McCleary (Jones). Marj Bird has given outstanding service as scholarship chairman and worked as assistant to the director of chapters for advisers. Anna Mitchelle Hiett Pflugh is Fraternity chairman of the chapter public relations program, chairman of chapter newsletters, and active chapter editor of The Key.
In the face of ever crowded conditions a final house addition was made in 1962 which included 19 double bedrooms. Eighty-two members could now be provided for.
The changing climate of the 1960s was by now apparent and such factors as the war in Vietnam, the new student life style, and the end of restrictions on university housing combined to create the chapter's greatest challenge. Within five years a decrease in chapter membership had created a house maintenance problem.
Since 1960 the Denver Alumnae Association has given an annual $500 graduate fellowship in honor of "Goodie" Campbell. Recently the association has donated $1,000 to the philanthropy program for undergraduate scholarships, in honor of Marion Smith Bishop, a Beta Mu with a long-time record of devoted service.
In 1968 Phyllis Brinton Pryor was elected vice president. She became Kappa's delegate to National Panhellenic Conference in 1971. She was the first recipient of the Denver Area's Panhellenic Woman of the Year Award for community and fraternity service. Nan Kretschmer Boyer served during that period as Kappa's extension chairman, was nominating chairman 1974, and is currently Fraternity Ritualist.
Recent years have brought recognition to such Denver-based Beta Mus as Jean Knight Bain who completed 12 years in the Colorado House of Representatives. She was succeeded in office in 1972 by Carol Packard Tempest, another Beta Mu. At Homecoming that year Besse Low Ireland, 50 year member, and her husband, Clarence L. Ireland, received an Alumnae Recognition Award for loyalty and service - the only couple ever to receive this honor. Their daughter, Betty Ireland Naugle, had earlier received the same award for her years on the Board of Trustees of Colorado State colleges. Another daughter, Edith Ireland Morris, is also a Beta Mu.
Despite the financial problems of a large house, the immediate future is bright. Renewed interest and fast increasing membership may signal a swing back to fraternity and the obvious advantages of congenial group living. A new unity and spirit pervades the chapter, and once again actives and alumnae share common goals of excellence.
The 1980”s found Beta Mu active on campus as well as enjoying each other’s company. The “preppy’ look was in, with corduroy pants, espadrilles and Izod shirts with the collars up. Saturday Night Live was popular on television as well as General Hospital. Landline phones were still in use and members who did not have phone service in their room would have to use the pay phone. The Beta Mu sun deck was often in use during warmer times of the year.
In the early part of the decade, the chapter faced some academic difficulties. With help from the Fraternity, the chapter was able to re-focus and move forward. Additionally, several chapter members dealt with anorexia and bulimia issues. In the latter part of the decade, Beta Mu and the entire Colorado University campus struggled with the effects of alcohol abuse. When a young woman died after attending a party hosted by Beta Mu and Kappa Alpha Theta, the Fraternity felt it necessary to place Beta Mu on probation for not properly following risk management guidelines.
Greek life continued to thrive at CU throughout the 80’s with the Greek groups participating in Songfest and each other’s philanthropies. The campus was active politically, with many Kappas making their voices heard on a variety of issues. The city of Boulder offered much to the students at CU, such as hiking at Chautauqua, skiing or snowboarding, and the Polar Bear plunge at Boulder Reservoir.
The 1990’s saw Beta Mu continue to do an outstanding job with recruitment. In 1992 the chapter was 170 members strong, with members from 30 different states. The new member classes hosted their annual Chili con Kappa events and the chapter held their very successful Kick for Craig soccer tournaments for the benefit of Craig Rehabilitation Hospital. Other philanthropic events included their annual Easter Egg Hunt, the Chinook Clubhouse Frisbee Tournament and the Race for the Cure.
A number of Beta Mu members were able to attend the Something of Value program, hosted by the Greek community at CU. This program helped participants clarify their personal values and the values of the organizations to which they belonged. The chapter also was responsible for helping the Greek community to understand the risk management necessary to have a safe social event.
Throughout the decade the chapter held numerous sisterhood events, including a Kappa Career Workshop, house appreciation dinner, and a chapter retreat at the YMCA Snow Mountain Lodge. These events served to remind the members how important it is to care for each other and enjoy each other’s company.
This decade saw significant changes in recruitment for the Colorado University campus. In 2005 the Panhellenic system moved recruitment from fall to the spring. Unfortunately this resulted in fewer women participating in recruitment and negative publicity surrounding the Greek community. While Beta Mu continued to recruit successfully, they did feel the pressure of filling the large chapter house. At one point, a portion of the chapter house was closed off. In 2008 the decision was made to transition back to a fall recruitment period. Large new member classes once again became the norm.
In an effort to reach out to the Boulder community, Beta Mu worked with the Boulder Alumnae Association to hold a KKG Haunted House. The chapter opened its chapter house to the community with trick or treating, face painting, arts and crafts and games. Over $2000 was raised for Reading is Fundamental and Boulder Reads. In 2005 the chapter held a Cajun Dinner where the funds raised were given to a Hurricane Katrina relief fund. In addition the chapter hosted three Kappas from Tulane University for a semester following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Philanthropy remained a strength for Beta Mu throughout the decade.
Beta Mu was honored to have the highest GPA among the Greek women’s groups several times throughout the decade. The chapter also hosted Professor Desserts, inviting favorite professors to the chapter house. However, towards the end of the decade, the chapter ‘s academic standing dropped, there were attendance issues and the chapter was having difficulty keeping its senior members engaged with the chapter’s activities. The chapter responded by setting new goals and putting new systems in place to counter these difficulties.
This past February, Colorado State hosted the Eta Province meeting in beautiful Fort Collins, Colorado. It was such a fun experience to attend all of the leadership workshops while meeting our sisters from New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, and Colorado College. Beta Mu was honored to accept the award for Achievement in Standards, and was very proud of our supportive Boulder Alumnae Association who took home many fantastic awards as well. All the actives that we were able to attend were a blast; proving that sisterhood knows no boundaries, even between states! It was also especially exciting, because we announced that Beta Mu would be hosting the Eta Province in Boulder, CO in 2013. It was also a year of great accomplishment within the Greek Community!
We hosted a Kappa Kappuccino event in the spring, where we sold cappuccinos to students and raised approximately $3,500 in which we donated to the Creekside Elementary RIF program. And in the Fall, we hosted Kappa Koral, where we sold burgers and fries and raised about the same amount and donated half of the profit to Adult Congenital Heart Association and part to a private charity for a girl with cancer. Beta Mu took first place in CU’s Campus-wide Dance Marathon, a philanthropic event for Children’s Hospital, by raising the most money for the second year in a row. We also had an amazing recruitment this past fall and initiated 64 new wonderful members to our chapter. Our new members really got to bond together through a sisterhood sleepover where they got surprised with a trip to the rollerskating rink. The theme of homecoming this year was decades, and we were selected to work with the years of our childhood, the 90's. Our chapter had a blast getting to work together with Sigma Pi, creating props and preparing awesome costumes for our homecoming parade. We also raised the bar by winning Homecoming for the second year in a row- here’s hoping for a three-peat next year!
Campus: University of Colorado at Boulder has always been a beautiful place to live and get an education. Throughout the past years, including this recent year, the Greek community has gained a more present place on campus through bigger requirements, and a large presence of philanthropy throughout the school. This past year, CU Boulder topped the rankings for party schools in America; this “achievement” has really put things into perspective for the Panhellenic community, and has prompted a focus on the safety of our sorority women. Our campus’ “party atmosphere” has definitely had its complications for the Greek Community, however it will be through the leadership shown by student groups such as CU student government and the Panhellenic sororities that we will combat any negativity associated with our University and its students. Beta Mu specifically hopes to up its risk management education, and worked closely with the Boulder Police Department to make social events as safe as possible for our members. We even recently had two Boulder police officers come and talk to our girls about safety, and drug and alcohol abuse. We hope to continue to better our school through the presence of the Greek Community.
Chapter: Beta Mu is definitely a unique chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma; we pride ourselves on our eclectic pledge classes and many individual personalities that give us the character we have grown to love so much. For one thing, the majority of our Chapter Council Officers consist of Sophomore members. It has been our goal to diversify our officer team by electing upper classmen, as well as reelecting members who have held previous offices. The 2011 Chapter Council consisted of a freshman and two senior members, and this recently elected team will boast two freshman members as well as two seniors mixed in with the rest of the sophomore council. Slowly but surely we hope to encourage older, more seasoned actives to continue to contribute to the leadership that runs this chapter. This will increase upper classmen participation, bonding between pledge classes, and hopefully give chapter council some valuable experience to use to better the chapter as a whole. Also, as a chapter we have managed to be among the top three ranked sororities on our campus for our GPA. This makes us proud, as we have made many measures to boost our GPA including, "Geek of the Week", study tables after our weekly meetings, and new revisions to our study room in the house. We are excited for a great year with a great group of girls, and hope to grow together and help portray the values we hold in Kappa Kappa Gamma to the community.
Our Chapter, just like others, had to overcome challenges and continue to improve upon our chapter as a whole. One of our main challenges of the year was being put on a focus letter. For various reasons our chapter was put on a focus letter, which I believe that if anything was actually very helpful to Beta Mu. It made us realize how important and special our organization is and helped us get the extra encouragement to make our chapter even better. Other smaller issues that remained in our chapter were attendance to greek events including philanthropies, panhellenic meetings, and even our own meetings. To try to help avoid bad attendance, we have made all of the girls at the beginning of this year sign a form in which states all of our chapter rules including events they must attend. We hope that having the girls see in writing all the rules they must abide by will help them remember to remain a loyal kappa sister. One other issue we have struggled with this past year was organization of our formals and date parties. We have brainstormed and come upon new and improved ways to make all of our events run more smoothly. Our chapter council plans onbeing more involved with the process of getting the girls and their dates signed in and onto the busses, and we also plan on hosting our spring date dash in a venue without a bar. We hope that all we have improved upon will help the upcoming year be our best yet!
This past year has been one filled with growth and accomplishment in the Beta Mu Chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma. The year started off with a Skate City date dash where all of the girls paired up and skated the night away filled with fun music and their sisters. Our formal also went with ease. It was held at the CU stadium overlooking our great football field. The theme was informal but formal; this gave a fun twist to everyone’s outfit where everyone was dresses in their best with one item that was informal. This made all the girls outfits fun when they walk in the house with a stellar dress while rocking there Nike running shoes.
Later in the spring we put on our philanthropy Kappa Italia. The philanthropy had pizza and entertainment for guests at the Kappa house, and raised money for KKG’s nationwide philanthropy, Reading is Fundamental. As the semester went on we had a mixer with Sigma Alpha Epsilon where we enjoyed a my-tie dinner where each girl pick a random tie that matched up with the guy that they would sit with at dinner. Then we had a spa day sisterhood at the house where manicures, massages, and facials were given. Finally, Greek week rolled around where we were paired up with Sigma Phi Epsilon.
We were awarded second in field games and on our banner leaving us in seventh place overall.This was the end of spring 2012. As the fall semester rolled around the girls got together for workweek and after all the hard work they put in they enjoyed a day at Water World together before the semester began. In September we had an amazing fall recruitment adding 71 lovely ladies to our house. We can thank our new member chair and event chair for making that possible. We then also had the honor of having the lowest drop rate on our campus and initiated 66 ladies into Kappa Kappa Gamma. The girls in Kappa made it very easy for the new members to feel comfortable by having fun bonding sisterhoods. The first one we did was a mural panting where we had women from a local arts center come by and teach all the girls how to paint a masterpiece. Then we held a new member retreat at Jump Street in Denver fallowed by a sleep over. The last sister hood we did was a bachelorette themed sisterhood where we took goofy pictures in bridesmaid dresses and painted fun wine glasses.
In the fall our first fun filled outing with our sisters was a date dash to the restaurant Barco, where the theme was girls in pearls and guys in ties. Then came homecoming, where we were partnered with Kappa Sigma. The Homecomings theme was the Olympics and we were to represent the rowing and sailing section. It was a good homecoming for us coming out with third place over all. Next, we had a mixer with Kappa Sigma where the theme was typical sorority girl/frat guy. They joined us in a wonderful spaghetti dinner that everyone enjoyed. We also had a mixer with Pi Kappa Phi where the theme was "vamos a la playa"; we served chips and salsa while doing a fun speed dating exercise that allowed us to make a lot of friends in Pi Kappa Phi house. We also involved ourselves in some philanthropy activities. The first was for Race for the Cure where several of us went and participated in the race or walk giving our donation to the cause and then we staying after to help put on the survivor ceremony.
The next thing we did was put on our annual children’s Halloween house where kids and there family’s came and enjoyed trick-or-treating, fun games and crafts in the holiday spirit. All of our proceeds went towards, Reading is Fundamental. We also participated in our schools Dance Marathon where proceeds went to Children’s Hospital, we spent the day with a young boy and his family and many others raising money to support other families like them. Lastly, we have volunteered our time to Creek Side, which is a school that we go and help kids with their reading and give them books that we were able to donate.
To end the fall semester before break we had a holiday sisterhood where we took a holiday postcard to send out to family, friends, and other Kappas around the nation. We also had reindeer, a phsycic, and prizes for all of the girls to enjoy. Overall, the 2012 year was one to be remembered, and with a new group of Chapter Council members, Beta Mu hopes use the new leadership to continue to be a presence among the Greek Community as well as on campus.
This past year on our campus at the University of Colorado Boulder the Greek life has really tried to connect and work along with the campus. Over all on the campus the Greek life continues to grow. One of the things I have really enjoyed watching is how the other students on the campus support the Greek life by attending the philanthropies that was all put on. Another thing that I have really liked about our campus is how much the school involves us.
At the beginning of the fall semester we had one of the athletic directors come and talk to us about how important it is to have us in the crowd cheering on our teams. This is one of the times I was able to really see that the university cares about our involvement. Also, in the fall semester one of the girls that is in Kappa and on the university’s student government board tried to get a bill passed that would enable the Greek system to have equal opportunities to rent cost centers on our campus. The bill was dismissed but has been addressed and will hopefully be passes in the future. As the university grows so has the Beta Mu Chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma.
We have begun to make improvements in bringing our chapter together as a whole by supporting each other and doing activities that allow us all to bond. We are also on the rise of improving our chapter GPA through the hard work of our education chair getting the girls excited in studying and by rewording them for all the progress they make. Overall Kappa has made leaps and bounds in the year of 2012 and will be continuing at this rate in the year of 2013.
The 2013-year was absolutely spectacular for the Beta Mu chapter! We have grown tremendously as a chapter and have experienced some great things throughout the year. The Beta Mu chapter would like to point out some of the things our chapter and school have done this year. The Beta Mu chapter received the Emerging Leader award, Campus Involvement award and most outstanding senior. We also received Province awards that were academic excellence, standards and public relations. We are very excited to have received these awards this year. We started out our fall semester of 2013 with a great workweek. We were very productive and focused. All the girls were excited and we had an amazing recruitment in September. In October, we held out annual Halloween House, which is where we invite kids of all ages to the house to participate in games, face painting and reading. We ask for donations of books that we distribute to elementary schools throughout Boulder. This year was a great success and had so much fun doing it. Homecoming theme this year was Colorado and we decided to do the Buffs vs. the Broncos.
It was so much being able to support the buffs and the broncos together, which make up two very important aspects of Colorado! Our chapter had so much fun working with Sigma Alpha Epsilon, making floats for the parade and coming up with a skit/dance routine. We held our fall philanthropy, Chili Con Kappa, in November. We sold tickets for all you can eat Mexican food at the house and we raised $5,940. It was such a great turn out! We initiated 71 new members in December and we could not have received a better group of girls. Headed into the New Year, we, as a chapter, decided on a few goals for the year. Our main focus will be raising our overall GPA. We have asked the girls to set 2-3 goals for themselves and hold themselves accountable. We have already seen improvement thus far. We ended 2013 with a holiday sisterhood and said our goodbye’s to juniors studying abroad and wished the best of luck to the seniors graduating early!
The University of Colorado Boulder has always been an amazing campus. It provides its students with not only a great place to live, but also an amazing education. The Greek community is gaining more respect on campus through bigger recruitment and a large presence of philanthropy through the school. With Greek life growing as much as it is, the Panhellenic community as made an effort to focus on the safety of its members. Beta Mu specifically hopes to up its risk management education and work closely with Boulder Police Department to keep our chapter as safe as possible. We recently received a new police liaison that we are very thrilled to work with. We hope to better our school through the presence of the Greek Community.
Colorado experienced dramatic floods in late September. Boulder was hit particularly hard but the community came together and is on the fast track to a great recovery. Many houses were flooded and some of our parks, rivers, and roads were destroyed. Luckily, our chapter house was not affected from the flood. We felt very lucky so our chapter planned something called the boulder Greek-Wide flood relief that was a huge success. The Greek community all came together and raised any money we could and donated it back to the community. The University was very supportive of those who’s houses were flooded and worked with those students to help them manage school and getting through such a difficult time. CU Boulder’s campus was not hit as hard as most other areas were but there were a few small incidents that were fixed promptly so school could get back in session after missing only one day.
This year has been an amazing year for the Beta Mu Chapter. We started off the year of 2014 with a brand new chapter council. They had some goals in mind of what they wanted to achieve and they new exactly how to accomplish them. They wanted to begin a new relationship with the Boulder Police Department. We wanted them to be advocates for us and for the Greek community to be able to work with the police rather than see them as someone they could not trust. It worked tremendously. During this past year, not one member of the Beta Mu Chapter was the victim of a crime. In March we had our spring philanthropy, Sweet Home Kappa Gamma. We had a bull riding machine, a petting zoo, and for one dollar you could "pie a Kappa". It was very successful. It attracted people from all over the Boulder community from college students to families. The money we raised went to the Cancer Research Institute. We raised over $2000. Next thing we knew, Greek Week was upon us where we were very successful. We raised $13,000, won songfest, and won the overall Greek Week. It was so exciting to see all the hard work payoff. Our girls worked so hard and we had so much dedication from our partners, Theta Xi and Alpha Gamma Omega. When our fall term began we had an amazing recruitment and gained 80 beautiful new members. Our fall philanthropy, Kappa Italia was very popular amongst the Greek community. We raised $5000 for Reading is Fundamental. In November, the new Chapter Council was selected and the entire chapter is very excited to see what the next year will bring. At the end of 2014 were University of Colorado's Panhellenic awards. Kappa Kappa Gamma won the risk management award as well as Chapter of the Year. It was an amazing year for the Beta Mu Chapter and are looking forward to another successful year.
The most recent changes made on our campus is the attempt to improve the relationship between the Boulder Police and the students of the University of Colorado. In past years, there has been very little animosity between students and the police. Officer Andrew Kirshbaum was the first to make the step in improving the relationship. He chose to work with the Beta Mu Chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma to show that police are there to keep students safe not to get them in trouble. He wanted to show that police wanted to be advocates for students rather than work against them. It has so far been very successful. Trust is starting to build between students and the police.
We hold our chapter meetings in our chapter room. Our chapter room is in the basement of our house. It is not required for our members to live in, however we stress how amazing of an experience it can be to live with your sisters. We have a house that can house 85 girls at one time. Our house is chapter owned. The house we live in has been the house we have lived in since Kappa Kappa Gamma came to the University of Colorado.
This has been a very eventful year for the Beta Mu chapter. We started of the year with winning a soccer tournament hosted by Pi Kappa fraternity. It was great to be able to get together with the rest of the Greek community to raise money for Pi Kappa's philanthropy. Our philanthropy chair organized a group of sisters from our chapter to participate in the Polar Plunge. It was an amazing and very cold experience.
Our philanthropy chair also successfully organized three major Kappa philanthropic events. In April we had Sweet Home Kappa Gamma where we raised money for the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation. We chose this organization to give the money we raised, because a sister of our chapter's mother passed away from this disease a few years ago. It was really great to give to such an amazing organization that could benefit all the women of Kappa. In October we had an event to raise money for elementary schools in our community, Halloween House. In November, Kappa Kappucino was our last philanthropy event that raised money for Reading is Fundamental.
Our standards chair also helped make this semester great with all of the sisterhoods she planned. We went to J Crew and had a shopping event, we went to the pumpkin patch, a yoga sisterhood at Lululemon, we wrote letters to soldiers, we went ice skating, and we had a movie night with a lot of snacks and watched Pitch Perfect 2. All of the pledge classes got to know each other, they were great bonding experiences.
Our registrar organized a History Night in April to celebrate the history of Beta Mu as well as the history of Kappa Kappa Gamma as a whole. We placed 3rd in Songfest and 2nd overall in Greek Week, which was very successful because we won in 2014. On top of Greek Week, our event chair planned very successful formals as well as mixers and date dashes. Some of the mixers we had were Pi Kapp game night, Theta Xi Wild Wild West, and 80's Winter Olympics with Sigma Nu. One of our very fun date dashes was Oktoberfest where we celebrated the German holiday with our sisters and our dates.
Over the summer our chapter council met for a few days for a retreat in Empire, Colorado at our risk chair's cabin. We had a great time canoeing, swimming, hiking, cooking, and bonding. After a few days together we all felt a lot more close than we did before the retreat. Our advisor did an amazing job of organizing activities for us. We had a very successful recruitment where we had the largest class of legacies in Beta Mu history. Our President also started a new activity for Beta Mu's to stay active and healthy. Our President is a very athletic individual and wanted our chapter to become more active so she started the Presidential Fitness Challenge.
This has been a successful year for Beta Mu. We started off the year with a new chapter council. They brought new ideas to the chapter and had goals surrounding keeping members safe and informed. This summer at convention, Beta Mu won honorable mention awards for Standards and Recruitment. We had most of our chapter council attend who all brought back fun and different ideas to help better Beta Mu. In the fall we recruited 100 new member to our chapter, 98 of who were initiated in November. We had professor tea towards the end of the semester where students invited their professors to the house to get to know our teachers better.
Over the last calendar year our event chair and our risk chair went above and beyond planning innovative and safe events for the chapter. Some of these events included a hockey game date dash and Great Gatsby themed formal. Along with fun events, our standards chair put together many sisterhoods allowing all pledges classes to get together and know each other better. In the spring, we competed in Greek Week with Sigma Phi Epsilon and Alpha Delta Pi. It was a great way for our newer members to get involved in Kappa and meet new people.
This past fall Beta Mu started an initiative with Chi Psi to stop sexual assault. The Walk Her Home Campaign was launched with a pledge signing on campus to eradicate sexual assault on CU Boulder's campus.
Over the last year the presidential election played a huge role on campus. Many students protested and spoke out about their beliefs changing the atmosphere on campus. Beta Mu encouraged girls to stand up for what they supported in a peaceful and productive manner. This was viewed positively by the school and rest of the students.
Our philanthropy chair put together two amazing philanthropies this year. Our fall philanthropy was A Very Hungry Kappapillar where we had breakfast for dinner at our chapter house. Proceeds went to Reading is Fundamental and there was a great turn out. In the spring we held Kappa Kickball, a kickball tournament between all the sororities and fraternities on campus. It was a huge success and had high participation from the Greek community. The proceeds went to the Samantha Remington Angel Heart Foundation.
The Samantha Remington Angel Heart Foundation is an organization that is very close to our heart at Beta Mu. This organization helps families afford organ transplants, something that could get very expensive for many people. It was started by one of our sisters and her family and we were very excited to be able to support her family.
2017 brought new changes to the University of Colorado. The University has set a goal of bringing in the largest freshman class in CU history; consequently the university has started several building projects in order to increase its capacity for students. New student learning facilities and dormitories are under construction to handle this boost in size.
Social events included our formal at Riverside in the snow and an ice skating sisterhood in Louisville. Valentine's Day brought a semi-formal event at Absinthe on Pearl Street. Spring Formal was held at the Denver Aquarium in April. In September we had Dad's Weekend. We went to the football game with our dads and had a special Father Daughter Dance on the patio of the Kappa house.
Soon after we concluded our fall recruitment, where we welcomed 101 new members, our chapter operations were suspended. In October the Fraternity placed the chapter on probation for one year. While chapter operations are again moving forward, we are working hard to instill a new culture and attitude in our chapter.
2018 started with an officer retreat in Leadville, CO, with the new Chapter Council establishing goals within the framework of the guidelines of the chapter's probation. A new member retreat was also held so the new members could become better acquainted.A special program, Start with the Why, was held for the chapter to help us better understand the purposes of our organization. The chapter also reviewed its risk management procedures.
The Fall 2017 pledge class was initiated in February 2018. Then a COB recruitment was held where the chapter pledged twenty two more members. Their initiation was held after spring break. In the fall of 2018 117 new members were pledged and they were initiated in November with more alumnae coming out to help than ever before.
The social events were amazing, including a spring formal at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and a winter formal at Red Rocks. We participated in Greek Week and the annual Theta KATWalk. A Galentine sisterhood and an alumnae tea rounded out the calendar.
CU recently elected a new student government comprised of mainly Greek members. In addition, the Panhellenic has invited Phi Mu to join the Panhellenic community.
Philanthropically, Beta Mu supports Reading is Fundamental in the fall term and then votes on a different philanthropy for the spring. In the spring of 2018, the chapter held a Kappa Koncert, raising $10,000 on behalf of the Denver Children's Hospital Oncology Department.
The newly installed chapter council had their first formal chapter and formal. Our winter formal was Met Gala themed, and was held at Red Rocks park and amphitheater. When the new chapter council returned from winter break, they went to Estes Park for their weekend retreat. Then, we formed new committees and had our first committee meetings. Ritual Reviews were held for both PC '18 and PC'17. We held a Valentines for Veterans sisterhood, where actives made Valentines to be sent to veterans in the Boulder community. We had Mom's Weekend, which had yoga classes, trunk shows, and a brunch. In April we held our spring philanthropy, Kappa Koncert, which had Win and Woo performing, and supported the National Heart Association. Our spring formal was held at the Denver Aquarium and its theme was "Under the Sea." We held a goat yoga sisterhood, where members got to go to a ranch and do yoga with baby goats sponsored by Rocky Mountain Goat Yoga. We held a senior send-off where we celebrated our seniors before finals week.
In August, new live-ins moved in, and we completed work week, where we bonded a ton as a chapter. We welcomed our new members in early September at our "Kappa Love" themed bid day. On October 19, we initiated 114 new members. Shortly following, we held our "Halloween House" philanthropy, opening the Kappa house to families in the Boulder community to make crafts, play games, and trick-or-treat through the halls. This event was unique from past years because we reserved the first hour of the event for autistic families, making sure to create a low-sensory environment for them. We held Dad's weekend and had an awesome BBQ for girls and their families. We elected a new chapter council and helped them transition during our November Date Dash at the Fox theater. We ended our semester with a great formal at Temple Nightclub in Denver, and with a few super fun finals week sisterhoods!
Last spring, CU held student government elections where a number of Kappa actives were elected, as well as other members of the Greek community. This summer, we held a mock recruitment with the recently founded CU Phi Mu chapter. It was a great opportunity to help support the first new chapter at CU since 1951. Additionally, a lot of active members are involved in Greek Sustainability on campus, where they do walkthroughs of the houses to ensure we are making conscious environmental decisions as a chapter, and to encourage healthy living habits. Lastly, we had two members of our chapter recognized by the University of Colorado Boulder Panhellenic Association. Hayley Reynolds was awarded Panhellenic Senior of the Year and Natasha Badger was awarded Panhellenic Woman of the Year, a monumental achievement.
Beta Mu supports the Boulder Reads branch of Reading is Fundamental (RIF) in the fall semester and our spring philanthropy is voted on by the chapter, so it varies each year. Our chapter prides itself on our ability to have members voice their philanthropic passions for our spring philanthropy. We chose Boulder Reads because it connects to Kappa's national philanthropy as well as our own Boulder community.
Beta Mu celebrated Founders Day with nearly a dozen alumnae, performing the Founders Day ceremony. The ceremony was followed by a brunch made by our Chef Tony. We plan to continue our ritual reviews to emphasize Kappa's history, values, and accomplishments and celebrate our Sesquicentennial anniversary.
Beta Mu has had an outstanding year, especially given the obstacles due to COVID-19. This year we held a few awesome in-person events early in the year including a "Keys and Kites" dessert party with Kappa Alpha Theta and a self-defense training for all member education in February. We also held our Kappa Kappa Gals Weekend (renamed from Mom's Weekend to be more inclusive for our sisters) during which we had pop-up shops, an event at Wonder Wonder art museum in Boulder, and a few exercise classes for girls to do with their guests. In March, we held a spring initiation to officially initiate Ashley Bradbury, who transferred to Boulder. Once COVID-19 hit, we began to have online movie nights every few weeks, and we had one of our members lead a virtual yoga class.
At this year's Greek Awards ceremony, several Kappas were honored. Tatum Amarell won the award for Panhellenic Senior of the Year, Molly Little received the Outstanding Scholar award, Lyndan Wall won Panhellenic Woman of the Year (the second year in a row that a Beta Mu has won this award!), and Hannah Pogue won Exec Member of the Year. Our chapter goals shifted significantly as the pandemic took over to be geared more towards inclusivity and diversity as well as putting greater importance on implementing ideas from chapter members.
In the fall, we put on a virtual work week and recruitment where we extended bids to 115 women. We held virtual chapter meetings on Sunday nights as well as intermittent ritual reviews throughout the semester leading up to our fall initiation. On October 24, we initiated 113 wonderful women from the 2020 pledge class! Following our chapter's initiation, we were included in Gamma Beta's (University of New Mexico) initiation ceremony to initiate the two women who were not able to make it to our original ceremony. Finally, in November, we transitioned to a new chapter council, who are eager for the next year! Despite the difficulties that this year presented, Beta Mu has had a wonderful year and has adapted well to virtual events and rituals while keeping members engaged and interested.
Beta Mu supported two philanthropies in 2020: Reading is Fundamental (RIF) and Brought to Reality (BTR). We chose RIF to support with our fall philanthropy not only because it is the nationally supported philanthropy of KKG, but we also think there is a need for greater literacy resources for kids in the Boulder community and all over Colorado. We chose BTR to support with our spring philanthropy because it is a locally founded organization whose primary mission is to support teens' mental health and prevent teen suicide. This is an organization that resonated deeply with many of our members.
To include DEI initiatives in our programming this year we held an online crowdchange fundraiser to benefit the Bail Project and Communities Against Police Brutality. We sent those who donated $20 or more a free art print. We held a virtual diversity and inclusion programming during our work week prior to recruitment which included information on microaggressions, privilege, and how to support and advocate for people of color. Throughout the year we have maintained a steady social media presence regarding our support of creating an inclusive and equal chapter. Our member, Emma Bramer, created a club focused on Greek life improving and enhancing diversity and inclusion.
To celebrate Kappa's 150th anniversary, we held a virtual "birthday party" for Kappa where members did trivia about the history of Kappa and its founders and other games. Additionally, Kappa history was included in ritual reviews throughout the year and the sesquicentennial was mentioned and highlighted.