After a seven-year hiatus, Coleman Love is in the air again.
Omega Psi Phi fraternity and Delta Sigma Theta sorority on Monday kicked off the first Coleman Love Week at Emory since Omega left campus in 2000.
Four Omega brothers and 13 DST sisters hosted events for the public this week, in celebration of the two groups’ relationship of more than 94 years, which began with the marriage of one of Omega’s national founders, Frank Coleman, with Edna Brown, one of DST’s national founders.
“The bond between the two founders created an everlasting relationship between those in the fraternity and the sorority,” said Shannon Paige, co-programming chair of DST.
Themed “Renaissance Man, Renaissance Woman,” the week aims to explore the concept of cultured men or women and how to achieve that distinction.
Omega fraternity president Julian Smith said the goal was also to show how the concept evolved through the years.
“[We] cover all the facets of what it means to be a man and woman,” Smith said.
Paige said events were planned to cover various topics, including art and educational programs, to benefit different audiences.
At Monday’s discussion, “The Status of the Black Family,” four panelists explored the impact of education and adoption on black families, addressed juvenile delinquency and the strength of black families and the effect of race on behavior.
Delores P. Aldridge, sociology professor and the first black faculty member at Emory, facilitated Tuesday’s discussion on what it means to act “within the confines of race.”
A small business exposition and food tasting was held on Wednesday, featuring vendors from Atlanta. The week will culminate with a step show, community service event and a service at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta over the weekend. Paige said the church was chosen for its history — Martin Luther King Jr. was a pastor there.
Being able to hold Coleman Love Week again after seven years means the two groups have made progress, Paige said.
“Omega has returned to Emory’s campus,” she said. “We need to show the campus what our bond is all about, what we have the capability to do within our sorority and fraternity,”
The celebration was especially popular among alumni who were not able to hold Coleman Love Week at Emory.
“This is my first time being on campus with there ever being a Coleman Love Week,” said Keyona Grant (’07N), former DST president. “We [alumni] were all very inclined to come back because we wanted to see what it was going to be like.”
Grant, who attended Tuesday’s discussion, said having Omega fraternity members at the event added a male perspective to dialogue. She added that Coleman Love Week brings diversity to campus by adding another approach to celebrating fraternity-sorority relationships.
“Although we’re all sororities and fraternities, we generally have the same common goal but the approach is different,” she said.
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