If you would like to get more involved in our chapter this quarter, here are some ways you can!
Thank you for reading this edition of the Encore. Stay safe and stay home everyone!
Volume XV - Issue II - Winter 2020
I hope you are all staying safe and healthy during this very unusual time. I am excited to bring you this edition of the Encore, as our Winter quarter has been one filled with fun and brotherhood. In addition to cheering our Men's and Women's Basketball teams through another exciting season, brothers participated in festive bake sales, many PsiEK and brotherhood bonding activites, and one very tension-filled game of Band Assassins. All the while the candidates of the Beta Psi class continued with their process, attending Degrees, family events, and many interviews filled with laughter and the joy of new connections. However, this time has also been difficult and uncertain. The pandemic has cut both the Winter quarter and the rest of this school year short, and many of the things we look forward to at this time - from basketball trips to Beach House - will unfortunately be unable to take place. With things moving so quickly it has been difficult for our chapter to plan, so we greatly appreciate the patience and support you all have shown while we figure things out! Now that things are settled, at least for the forseeable future, I have some updates for you all regarding how the rest of the year will go.
First, the candidate process. Since National requirements state that the process be completed this quarter, candidates are continuing with interviews and Final Project presentations online. While we cannot hold Third Degree this quarter (and are unsure of when we will be able to) Beta Psi will still transition to activehood this month! More information on this can be found in the message from the current chapter president, Daniel Fernandez, which is included below. An important note is that candidate lessons, including the Alumni Panel, are still continuing remotely over Zoom. After deliberation our VP has scheduled the Panel for this Friday, April 10th at 6 p.m. PST. If you are available at this time please let me know! We would love to have you if you are free, especially to try to keep things as normal as possible for our current candidates.
Secondly, some info about general operations for this quarter. Chapter meetings are continuing remotely, and we will be holding Elections virtually as well. I am looking forward to announcing our new Officers to you all at the end of the quarter! Any events that cannot be held remotely have been cancelled, including this year's Beach House. Third Degree (and all the events leading up to it) have been postponed, at this point indefinitely since we are unable to be sure when things will return to normal. Otherwise, however, we are trying to carry on as normally as possible! We are still holding virtual social and music events, and trying our best to adapt fundraising and service events. There will be a Spring Encore, and I'm excited to tell you all about our online adventure when that time comes!
Until then, and as always, please reach out if you have any questions, concerns, suggestions, or ideas! I hope you are staying healthy and amused if you are at home, and if you work in health or any other essential field I hope you are staying safe and know how much you are appreciated. If you need any help during this time please feel free to reach out as well. Thank you all for your continued support of our chapter even during this crazy time, and hopefully I will be able to see you all soon! :)
Alumni Relations Officer, 2018-2020
In the days leading up to Second Degree, our wonderful DoBSR's Ryan and Shruti organized PsiEK Social Night! This was a brand new event that allowed for current brosters as well as many candidates of the Beta Psi class from Psi and Alpha Omega class from our sister chapter of Epsilon Kappa to come together for a night of BONDing.
The event was set up so the candidates of EK were in a room with active members of Psi, and the Psi candidates were in a room with the actives of EK. This allowed us to begin to foster relationships with candidates from the Alpha Omega class that we wouldn't have otherwise gotten to meet in preparation for the epic crossover event that is our Second Degree.
PsiEK Social Night consisted of many small group activities, including placing on your head a piece of paper describing one half of an iconic duo and finding your other half in the crowd, building the tallest and most stable structures possible using only spaghetti and marshmallows, a blindfolded puzzle race, and an overall fantastic opportunity for a lot of great memories with the soon-to-be sisters.
We concluded the night by planning skits in our small groups with the challenge of re-interpreting movies that we picked at random into a completely new genre. My group wrestled with the task of turning Disney’s Frozen into a thought-provoking public service announcement piece emphasizing the dangers of climate change. At the end of the night, we were met with the surprise of performing these skits in front of a united group of PsiEK actives and candidates. Unsurprisingly given the vast amount of creative talent in PsiEK, each skit was an absolute hoot to watch and the room was filled to the brim with laughter.
PsiEK Social Night allowed for an abundance of goofiness, joy, and quality time with brosters that was a beam of joy and optimism in the midst of a hectic Winter Quarter. A huge thank you to our DoBSR’s and their committees for spearheading this awesome new opportunity for us to get closer to our sisters and cherish the bond. MLITB!
On February 7th, the brothers and sisters had a fun time strengthening the bond with another PsiEK Big/Little Date Night. What made this one particularly exciting was that it happened to be on a Friday – not just any old Friday, but one that happens only when the planets align (which happens to be the first Friday of every month). For this Date Night, Bigs and Littles took a quick trip down to Venice for First Fridays!
Our wonderful Directors of Brotherhood and Sisterhood Relations did an amazing job setting up this event, from coordinating both of our chapters to handling logistics of getting everyone there and back! If you’re like me, you probably waited until the last minute possible to sign up (yikes), but in the end everyone who wanted to go found a way to get there.
By the end of the night, as if we were moths drawn to lamps, everyone somehow ended up at Salt and Straw. The line went out the door as usual, as brothers and sisters waited very patiently to round off the night with a treat. Some exchanged their personal Yelp reviews of the food trucks they had visited, while others fooled around to pass the time. After getting a hold of some delectable ice cream, all of us headed out and formed a large mob outside of the establishment, where we all just spent some quality time talking to each other, sharing laughs and stories to destress from the struggles of the quarter. Honestly, PsiEK could have taken over all of Venice with the amount of people occupying the sidewalk outside of Salt and Straw! (Next time, perhaps…)
Finally, as everyone finished their dessert and the bustle of Venice was winding down, it was time to head home. After a little back-and-forth, everyone managed to find a ride back home, and we all parted ways to wrap up a great night.
PsiEK had a blast getting to interact with lifelong friends that night. This Date Night will be a memorable one for us all!
Watch out world, because the Lion/FeLion(the name is a work in progress) Line is coming for you!
By David Thorne, BΦ
On February 14th, the Psi Chapter hosted our second annual Valentine’s Day Bake Sale! For this sale, we once again split into teams based on our candidate classes, and this year we included the current candidates in the competition! In preparation, the baking teams gathered the night before the sale to prepare their goods. The Beta Phi class bakers decided to make donut shaped sugar cookies with a homemade chocolate glaze and sprinkles. The candidates from Beta Psi made strawberry lemon muffins. On the day of the event, Brothers began selling our goods at 9 AM. The Beta Phi donut cookies were the first to sell out by around 1 PM, and the rest of the goods completely sold out by 3 PM. The bake sale was not only successful, but also gave the candidates a chance to see what activehood looks like in a fun, competitive way!
On a fateful winter quarter day, the members of the UCLA marching band were charged with the following mission: to eliminate other band members through trickery, schemes, and lies for the sole purpose of gaining eternal glory. In other words, the Directors of Band Activities (DOBA) of Psi and EK announced the start of Band Assassins 2020!
The rules of Band Assassins are simple. After signing up to play the game, each band member receives a target. To assassinate their target, the player must place a sticker directly onto the target. Placing the sticker on the target’s instrument case, backpacks, or any other belonging is not acceptable. Once the target has been eliminated, the player must report the success to the gamemasters to receive their next target. Players are reminded that anywhere in Schoenberg Music Building is a “safe zone”, wherein a kill may not take place. Players are also reminded that a kill is only acceptable if less than four UCLA marching band members are in the general vicinity at the time (the assassin, the target, and two others).
By January 30th, eighty members of the marching band had signed up for the game – willingly subjecting themselves to weeks of suspicion, paranoia, and a reasonable amount of fear. On February 1st, the game began.
Immediately, band member turned against band member. Rivalries and alliances formed. Tensions grew as players doubted who they could trust. The first target eliminated was Marco Cornelio, a first year member of BOOT, assassinated by Johnny Urosevic, a third year member of BOOT. Such treachery within one section was unheard of! (As of this round of assassins).
There were plenty of assassins this year who eliminated targets like it was going out of style. To name a few, first year trumpet Sydney Myers eliminated four of her targets. Third year Zachary Judson of the alto sax section also took out four band members. Garret Henkle, a third year trumpet section leader, also managed to take out four targets in his self-guided quest to eliminate Drum Major Matthew Espinoza (who was eliminated before Garrett could get to him). Though these three assassins played a good game, they were overshadowed by freshman trumpet Cam Uy, with a total of eight kills.
However, the game took a turn. At the end of Band Assassins Round 1, Cam Uy was taken out by Carrie Appel, a third year member of the colorguard. As the weeks went on, another round of Band Assassins came to a close. By the beginning of the third round, only four players were left in the game.
The crowned winner of Band Assassins 2020 was a band member who played the long game. She waited for the right moments to strike, and bided her time. She hails from a section that nearly went extinct, but has brought honor to her people by winning this year’s game. Adrianna Vree, a first year tenor sax player, conquered seventy-nine other band members this year and captured the eternal glory every Band Assassin participant dreams of. We congratulate Adrianna, and thank the brave band members who risked their sanity to participate in Band Assassins 2020.
On Sunday, November 24, Psi hosted a brotherhood Super Smash Bros. Ultimate tournament! Although the turnout wasn’t quite as great as the previous year’s tournament with only 10 brothers this year compared to 16 last Spring, the level of competition was as fierce as ever. The lineup included stars such as Naveed Zaman’s Samus and Casey Armstrong’s Kirby, really showcasing the gaming ability of the Psi chapter. This year’s tournament consisted of a round-robin bracket, where the goal was to have everyone play each other once in a best-of-3 set. Unfortunately, we ended up running out of time before getting everyone to finish all of their sets, but we were still able to decide a winner!
We had a surprise guest make an appearance at the tournament as well: the reigning champ from last year’s tournament, alumni Sean Ezenwugo! Last year, he won a riveting grand finals set against me in the last possible game, where it was ultimately anybody’s game to take. This year, the rest of chapter was given the opportunity to redeem themselves and show Sean that his R.O.B. really isn’t all that great. Spoiler: it isn’t.
After riveting matches between brothers which included some very surprising upsets, incredibly close games, and maybe a bit too much trash talk, one person ended the day undefeated with just one match left to play before we had to end the tournament: me, William Shu, with a convincing 2-1 victory over the previous champion Sean and “Ultimate” bragging rights until chapter’s next tournament. Tune in next year to see who takes first place in the next annual Smash tournament! Spoiler: not Sean.
I hope that everyone is staying safe and I thank you for your patience as we sort through this new situation. As a general update, PsiEK continues to operate online and hopes to keep building our PsiEK community through these trying times!
Due to the uncertain climate, we are not able to provide an exact date for 3rd Degree but we are hoping for Beta Psi to experience it in Fall. The new officer board will be the ones planning 3rd and everything that comes with it when the time comes. Beta Psi candidates will not know about any 3rd degree information (anything leading up to it as well as what happens during) until we are able to assemble again so I ask that everyone does their best in not spoiling the secrets to them.
On that note, National Kappa Kappa Psi guidelines require that the candidate process requirements will be completed this quarter. We will be welcoming Beta Psi officially as actives on April 18th! We are currently deciding on what approach would be best for celebrating this achievement. More info will arrive on the celebration later!
Thank you all for your patience and your continued support for both alumni and active brothers! As always, please let chapter know if there is something we can do to support you and stay safe.
Psi Chapter President, 2019-2020