“It all started in room 205 of Gatewood Hall, a freshman dorm on campus,” explained Colony President Jared Pinkerton. After researching numerous fraternities, Jared and several other University of Arkansas students felt that Theta Chi’s values aligned with their own. “I pondered the idea of bringing a fraternity that aligned with my values to campus. During my childhood, I had the pleasure of growing up around two Theta Chis who were both distinguished members of the community. They were alumni of Eta Sigma/Arkansas Tech. That chapter left Arkansas in 1997 and there hasn’t been a Theta Chi presence in Arkansas since. I thought it was time to bring those values back.” When Jared approached his roommate, Joel Falknor, with the idea he was ecstatic. “Our dream was to bring a fraternity to campus that challenged the negative stereotypes the public has on Greek life.” After making a few calls, they had 15 men meeting in their living room, ready to move forward.
Theta Chi’s return to the state of Arkansas was made official when 19 men colonized the University of Arkansas on December 6, 2016. Past International Historian and Vice President Tom “Bo” Tinnin was the presiding officer, with the Associate Director of Recruitment and Expansion Taylor Dahlem, Chief Operating Officer Ray Vanlanot, and Senior Field Executive PJ Ricketson representing the International Headquarters. Family members and significant others also attended the ceremony, as well as friends of the 19 colony members. Following the ceremony, a catered reception was held at the First Baptist Fayetteville Church.
The group is confident in their efforts to bring Theta Chi to campus. “The moment each of the 19 of us were introduced to Theta Chi, we knew it was our home,” said Pinkerton. “We know that by introducing Theta Chi to the University of Arkansas, it will become the home for a tremendous amount of men.”
Going forward the colony hopes to receive their charter in record time and improve the view of Greek life to the outside world through academic excellence and exemplary actions. “Shortly after meeting this group I could tell they were highly motivated to become something great,” said Field Executive PJ Ricketson. “This will easily be one of our fastest growing and very successful groups in the near future. They have me looking back at my freshman self and wondering why I couldn't have been more impressive at that age.”
Founded in 1856, Theta Chi Fraternity is a men’s collegiate fraternity with more than 180,000 initiated members and has established 235 chapters. Leadership development, personal development, and service to alma mater are fundamental to Theta Chi Fraternity’s mission.