Published on May 15, 2013 by Philip Poole  

Samford University's Interfraternity Council (IFC) has announced that Alpha Tau Omega (ATO) will colonize at Samford during the 2013-14 academic year.

Four national organizations were  invited to visit the Samford campus and to meet with faculty, staff, administrators and students before ATO was selected for colonization next year. Expanding the Samford fraternal community adds additional opportunities to meet a growing demand by students as the campus undergraduate population continues to grow each year, according to Denny Bubrig, Samford's director of Greek life.

ATO will be the first new IFC colonization at Samford since 1925. Current IFC organizations include Lambda Chi Alpha, Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Chi and Sigma Nu. Samford also has chapters for Alpha Phi Alpha and Kappa Alpha Psi, members of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, bringing to seven the number of fraternities that will be on the Samford campus in fall 2013.

Adding an IFC chapter also creates opportunities for current council members, according to 2013 IFC President Chris Sullivan, a junior business major from Plant City, Fla. Sullivan is a member of Sigma Chi.

 "As a Greek community, we feel there is an untapped group of people who are interested in Greek life, bringing another fraternity on is the best way to reach those individuals and in the process offering the fraternal experience to more people, " Sullivan said. "Adding a fraternity brings out the best in all of the groups active with the council and potentially helps in recruiting students too."

The 2013 IFC will provide ATO the resources and connections needed to be successful on campus, Bubrig said.

According to Sullivan, the process was a learning experience for the students involved. "It was great to learn about all the different organizations and to see how passionate they were about being at Samford," he said. "It was a fun experience, and I learned a lot. I am glad we are moving forward with a colony and look forward to next fall."

ATO, founded Sept. 11, 1865 at Richmond, Va., was the first fraternity founded in the post-Civil War South. According to the organization's website, it is widely recognized for both service and leadership initiatives. ATO was founded on the ideas of peace and reconciliation throughout the country, in that time, rooted in Christian values.

Sullivan expressed excitement about the upcoming colonization and the selection.  "ATO is a perfect fit for Samford. The values they stand for align well with Samford and with the Samford Greek community."

ATO officials will begin work at Samford during the fall with expected recruitment of new members to begin in late fall, Bubrig said.

For more information, contact the Office of Greek Life at 205-726-2028 or at

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.