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AdvanceU is a virtual based classroom with educational programs specifically designed to enhance the alignment of the fraternity/sorority experience with the changing dynamics of higher education. AdvanceU programs provide AFA members the opportunity to engage on a wide range of topics with content experts who develop curriculum with a specific set of learning outcomes geared at achieving higher levels of professional competence in our members.

Due to the generous support of Zeta Tau Alpha, AdvanceU is free to all members of the Association. This virtual classroom experience provides members with supplemental reading materials, a learning guide for each seminar, and the opportunity to engage with seminar participants following the program. The goal is to provide seminars that range from new skill development to application of new concepts. Participants are exposed to new best practices in higher education and then encouraged to apply those new concepts to our work with fraternities and sororities. Every AdvanceU session provides members the opportunity to continually develop as a professional, is grounded in the Core Competencies for Excellence in the Profession, and continues to AdvanceU.

Call for Programs

We're looking to give AFA members the opportunity to engage on a wide range of topics with content experts who will develop curriculum with a specific set of learning outcomes geared at achieving higher levels of professional competence in our members. Stay tuned for information about the 2018 call for programs.

Upcoming Program

Being “Inclusive” in an Exclusive Community: Examining Transgender Membership Within Private Fraternal Organizations

Tuesday, January 23, 2018 | 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. EST


If a transgender student came into your office and asked about their eligibility to join a fraternal organization, would you know how to respond? What about if a chapter approached you to ask whether they could initiate a transgender student? An increasing number of fraternal organizations are taking steps to clarify their policies on whether transgender students are eligible for membership, but the conversation is far from over. After a review on the basics of the transgender identity, this panel will settle the questions surrounding the role of Title IX in social fraternal organizations. Participants will then learn about the legal foundations of private organizations and how campus-based professionals can successfully advocate for their students, despite the limitations of the law. 

Beth Stathos is the General Counsel for Chi Omega Fraternity headquartered in Memphis, TN. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma and her Juris Doctorate from the University of Oklahoma College of Law. 

As an undergraduate, Stevie Tran's fraternal involvement shaped her experience at Arizona State University, empowering her to openly identify as a trans woman. Stevie authored her first piece on transgender membership entitled Embracing Our Values: Title IX, the "Single-Sex Exemption," and Fraternities’ Inclusion of Transgender Members, which was published in the Hofstra Law Review. Stevie currently serves as the President and Chairman of Sigma Phi Beta Fraternity and is a also a practicing attorney in New York City. 

Nathan Arrowsmith is an attorney practicing at the Phoenix law firm of Osborn Maledon. He focuses his practice on education law, commercial litigation, and appellate matters. Nathan has a special interest in transgender legal issues, including transgender membership in fraternal organizations. Nathan also currently serves as the Director of Chapter Affairs for Sigma Phi Beta Fraternity and has previously served as their President and Chairman.


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Previous Programs

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Recent Programs

Action Research as Professional Development

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This program will explore the value of action research as a form of professional development. Participants will explore the conceptual differences between action research and experimental research. The new research priorities for the Association will be shared and identify possible topics for action (or experimental) research.

Presenter: Dr. Joshua Schutts is a research associate and director at the University of West Florida and a doctoral faculty member in the department of research and advanced studies. Josh earned his B.S.B.A. in Marketing, M.Ed. in College Student Personnel and Ph.D. in Research, Evaluation, Statistics, and Assessment from the University of Southern Mississippi. Josh is a former F/S director and presently serves on the AFA board of directors and chairs the AFA research committee.
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Slide Deck: Action Research PDF (2.58 MB) Administration 5/25/2017

Advancing my Career While Staying Put

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Stephanie Baysinger is a Senior Recruiter at one of the world’s top consulting firms. After spending two years as an Extension Consultant for Pi Beta Phi after college, she became a professional recruiter. Tina Rivard is a Director of Business Development at a consulting firm in Washington, D.C. and continues to take on large volunteer positions for Pi Beta Phi including Director of Membership and currently Director of Chapter Operations.

Both women have sustained long tenures at their current companies while continuing to navigate the challenges and successes that come with continued professional development. Presenters will take time to share their commitment to obtaining new skills and seeking unique opportunities to foster growth in their professional careers. They will also share how their volunteer and professional Greek experiences have helped shape their road maps to their current private sector positions.
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Presentation - Advancing my Career While Staying PDF (2.7 MB) Administration 11/1/2016

CAS to Navigate Professional Success

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Presented by: Marybeth Drechsler Sharp, CAS Executive Director; Noah Henry-Darwish, CAS Intern and University of Maryland Graduate Student; Lindsey Templeton, CAS Intern and University of Maryland Graduate Student; Kimberly Kruchen, CAS Intern and University of Virginia Graduate Student
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Slide Presentation: Professional Success PDF (7.09 MB) Administration 3/1/2016

Collabor8. Cre8. Innov8.

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As professionals we sometimes get stuck and tend to get in a rut when trying to come up with new ideas. This program will show you how to get unstuck and keep things fresh to continually innovate by using the Creative Problem Solving Process, new tools and behaviors in order to collaborate better and get those business-changing, disruptive solutions to challenges you are facing. Learn ways to find clues and insights into what our students and organizations really need so you can find solutions to meet those needs.

“Gert” Garman is the owner of Broad Perspective, LLC. Previously, she was the Director of the Collaborative Design Center at Valencia College. Prior to that, she was a Creativity and Innovation Catalyst for Disney Destinations, where she facilitated brainstorming sessions and trained fellow Cast Members in Disney’s Innovation Toy Box for the Disney Parks and Resorts worldwide. She is an alumna of the Delta Gamma Fraternity.
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Collabor8. Cre8. Innov8. - Slide Deck PDF (9.49 MB) Administration 4/28/2017

Emerging Adults

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Emerging Adults: Rethinking the Development of Students & Young Alumni presented by Amber Jolly and Annalise Sinclair.
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Full Webinar: Emerging Adults Link Administration 3/24/2016
Slide Presentation: Emerging Adults PDF (1.21 MB) Administration 3/24/2016

Exploring Transition and Success in Your New Role

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How do you know if you will be successful in your new position? This program will explore research from Michael D. Watkins’ book, First 90 Days and how to prepare for the transition into your new role. Whether you are about to start your new role or just started, participants will explore what success can look like in their new roles, helpful transition tips, while building a strong relationship with their supervisor.
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Handout: Transition Risk Assessment PDF (73.88 KB) Administration 6/8/2017
Handout: Identifying Cultural Norms PDF (59.92 KB) Administration 6/8/2017
Slide Deck - Exploring Transition Success PDF (3.2 MB) Administration 6/8/2017

Finding Passion and Purpose in Life

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Whether you are working for corporate America, enrolled in college or raising a family, continuing to find passion and purpose in life becomes more and more difficult. Brent Scarpo's program has been presented at numerous corporations, colleges, universities and associations. Participants leave the program revitalized, renewed with a new sense of passion and purpose for their lives. During this program, you will discover "The Six Secret Steps" of having a complete and wonderful life no matter what place you might be in your career.
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Slide Presentation: Finding Passion and Purpose PDF (771.96 KB) Administration 4/14/2016

FIPG: Risk Management is Everyone’s Responsibility

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FIPG: Risk Management is Everyone’s Responsibility

Presenter: David Westol, J.D., Principal & Owner, Limberlost Consulting, Inc.

Program Description: Those letters - FIPG - are now perhaps the most recognizable in the entire Greek world. For 30 years, the Fraternal Information and Programming Group (FIPG) has been the voice for risk management policies and practices. Many colleges, universities, interfraternity and panhellenic councils across the country have adopted the FIPG policy as their own, providing a level playing field for all Greek organizations on their campus. But if we if we didn't have FIPG, where would we be? This program will review the history of the organization, the development of policies and highlight the most recent changes in structure and guidelines.
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FIPG Recorded Program Link Administration 3/13/2017
Slide Presentation: FIPG - Risk Management PDF (649.99 KB) Administration 2/23/2017

Global Competency through Immersion

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Building Global Competency through Service Immersion Experiences
Presented by: Kaye Schendel
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Full Webinar: Service Immersion Link Administration 3/24/2016
Slide Presentation: Service Immersion PDF (12 MB) Administration 3/1/2016

Leaning in, Standing Back and Encouraging Forward

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During the 2016 Olympics, a commentator said that Katie Ladecky “swims like a man.” Women are consistently being compared to their male peers, especially when it comes to their success. Centered around Bandura’s theory of self-efficacy, participants will engage in conversation around how the confidence gap affects our female students, employees, and ourselves. And the steps we can take to not feel sorry for being assertive, influential, confident and successful.

Learning Objectives: Participants will identify four ways to increase their assertiveness in their personal lives; will determine effective methods for supervising female staff members; and will identify three opportunities to increase confidence and self-empowerment in their female students.

Ariel Tarosky | Director of Education & Communication, Triangle Fraternity
Cat Sohor | Director of Fraternal Development, Delta Chi International Fraternity
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Presentation - Leaning in, Standing Back and Encou PDF (2.71 MB) Administration 9/29/2016

Making Sense of the Fair/Safe Campus Acts

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This summer, two pieces of legislation were introduced which would significantly alter the ways in which colleges and universities are able to respond to sexual violence on campus: the Fair Campus Act (H.R. 3408) and the Safe Campus Act (H.R. 3403). Clearly all student affairs professionals are concerned about the problem of sexual violence on campus. However, the Fair Campus and Safe Campus Acts are of particular interest to fraternity and sorority professionals due to the possible implications of the legislation on the work of their functional areas in addition to those of other campus partners.
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Making Sense of the Fair Campus and Safe Campus Ac PDF (1.96 MB)  more ] Administration 10/12/2015

National Data on Fraternities and Sororities

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Using data from a nationally representative sample of students at four-year colleges and universities (The Freshman Survey), this presentation will explore incoming students’ likelihood of joining a fraternity or sorority. The discussion will highlight background characteristics and high school experiences that align with student interest in joining a Greek organization upon college entry. Data from a sample of graduating seniors (the College Senior Survey) will reveal which students ultimately joined a fraternity or sorority. Additionally, data from the College Senior Survey will provide insight into fraternity and sorority members’ college experiences and how they compare to their non-Greek peers. This comparison will be centered around a number of college outcome measures and experiences including civic engagement, leadership, and faculty interactions. Lastly, throughout the presentation, we will highlight how experiences among Greek-life participants differ between women and men.
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Session Overview PDF (47.98 KB) Administration 10/1/2015
Session Recording - Webinar Link Administration 10/1/2015

Navigating Unrecognized Organizations

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Abstract: Fraternities and sororities have been a vital component of the college student experience for centuries. These organizations offer opportunities for students to learn and grow, give back, build relationships, and do the right thing. When a fraternity or a sorority chooses to operate while not officially recognized by the university, this creates significant risk for students, inter/national organizations, and the institution which also negates positive experiences for students.

This program provides participants an opportunity to understand the complexities that are present when a fraternity or a sorority decides to operate unrecognized. While the risks associated when a group operates unrecognized will be explored during this presentation, best practices will be shared for professionals to implement when working with unrecognized organizations. Lastly, tangible solutions will be offered in how to manage organizations not affiliated with the institution.
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Navigating Unrecognized Organizations PDF (2.55 MB)  more ] Administration 9/6/2016

NPHC & Council Governance

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Presented by Michael V. Bowie, Collegiate Chair, National Pan-Hellenic Council, Inc.
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Slide Presentation: NPHC & Council Governance PDF (9.33 MB) Administration 3/1/2016

Open Your Eyes: Race, Racism, and Inclusion

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Lawrence Ross is a noted author and speaker on topics involving race, campus climate and the intersection with fraternities and sororities. In this session of Advance U, Ross will focus the discussion on the history of the white supremacy and white nationalist movements, how it impacts campus culture directly and indirectly, and what you as a professional need to know to tackle this difficult subject effectively. Fraternity and sorority professionals can play a key role in both facilitating positive and productive conversations about race and helping enact policies that ensure a welcoming and safe environment on campus.
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Open Your Eyes: Full Webinar Link Administration 9/29/2017
Open Your Eyes AFA Webinar.pdf PDF (21.16 MB) Administration 9/29/2017

Project Management Doesn’t Have to Suck

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Full Webinar: Project Management Link Administration 3/24/2016

Supervisor 101: How to be a Great Boss

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Slide Presentation - Supervisor 101 PDF (2.76 MB)  more ] Administration 3/31/2017
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