Membership Information         

Sigma Phi Sigma
Funeral Service

Welcome to Sigma Phi Sigma, Gamma Chapter

The purpose of this booklet is to acquaint you with your rights, privileges and obligations as a member of the best Sigma chapter in the world. This booklet will also give you information about your current officers, how to reach them and their outlook for the coming year.

I. History

Sigma Phi Sigma, Gamma Chapter was fully recognized by Central State College on 22 October 1970. The Alpha Chapter is located at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, Carbondale, Illinois. We are an outgrowth of The Funeral Service Education Club which was established from 1965 - 1968. Our past members have made significant contributions at UCO, the local community, in the state and throughout the nation. Since UCO is only one of five schools in the nation to offer a bachelor of science degree in funeral service, our members come from diverse backgrounds. Past accomplishments include the establishment of the UCO Bloodhounds, participation in the Homecoming Parade and various scholarships and awards. We hope to build on our past into the next millennium.

II. Your Officers

A. President

Your President's job is to lead the organization. This may sound very easy, but it is a very difficult position. A President must provide direction and be the heart of the organization. He/she needs to listen to what the fraternity wants and then say this is what we are going to do. He/she needs to be a diplomat, a guide and a leader all rolled into one being. Our President represents the whole fraternity to campus organizations, businesses and the public.

B. Vice President

Your Vice President also provides leadership. He/she must be ready and willing to fill the President's shoes at a moment's notice. The Vice President is automatically an ex-officio member of all standing committees appointed by the President. He/she keeps an ear open to the membership and lets the leadership know what's going on.

C. Treasurer

The Treasurer is the financial officer of the fraternity. He/she is responsible to account for all our monies to the fraternity. Everything we spend and earn goes through the Treasurer. It is the Treasurer's responsibility to report to you each month where we stand financially.

D. Secretary

Your Secretary needs to be a hard working individual. He/she records the minutes of the meetings, verifies members' eligibility and writes/receives the official correspondence of the fraternity. In addition, the Secretary is responsible for maintaining databases containing member information, funeral provider information and data on funeral goods corporations. Through good organizational skills and an eye for detail, a good Secretary is the engine that turns your President's goals into reality.

E. Public Relations Officers

Your Public Relation Officers are responsible for letting the world know what we are about and what we are doing. Because of good PR we are able to ask for and receive donations from funeral homes and corporations. Good PR also gives you an edge when you go on your job interview. You will have the opportunity to point to something Sigma did and thank your prospective employer for the opportunity. Your PR Officers are responsible for submitting articles to newspapers and professional magazines.

F. Parliamentarian

While the President directs meetings, the Parliamentarian oversees the governing of the meeting. It is his/her duty to ensure that meetings run according to Robert's Rules of Order and the fraternity's Constitution and By-Laws. The Parliamentarian also acts as the Sergeant-At-Arms during meetings.

III. Faculty Advisor

The Faculty Advisor provide guidance to the operation of the organization. He/she also establishes and maintains good relations with the Administration of UCO. The advisor also acts as the administration's chaperone during events. He/she must attend each meeting and counter-sign all financial vouchers.


IV. Benefits

A. Dues paying member benefits:

  • Member's handbook
  • A copy of the Constitution
  • A membership card and certificate of membership
  • Voting privileges (See Sec V for more information)
  • Graduating Seniors who have been dues paying members for at least three semesters will receive a free tassel with year charm. See the Secretary for your coupon.
  • A full or partial copy of a database of all funeral homes in Oklahoma. The Secretary maintains a database of funeral homes in Oklahoma. You may request a print out of all funeral homes in the database or only those in a particular town. Each record contains a company name, address, phone number and point of contact.
  • A copy of the scholarships available through the department, university and nationally. This is a partial list of university available scholarships. Please check with the Scholarship Office  for a full list.

B. Active member benefits:

An active member is someone who has participated in 60% of our meetings or events. The Secretary is responsible for recording your participation. You may request a record of your participation at any time. Each meeting is worth 1 hour. Events are based time also. Extra time may be awarded at the discretion of the Executive Board based on your contribution to the fraternity. Active membership is computed by your participation time divided by the total time with extra time added.

Active members receive the above benefits plus:

  • Sigma Phi Sigma subsidy for events. Eligible events and amounts of the award will be determined by the membership.
  • Sigma Phi Sigma active members' discount on clothing and apparel. The amount of the discount will be determined by the membership.
  • Graduating Senior members receive a free tassel with year charm. See the Secretary for your tassel coupon
  • A chance to be awarded the B.F. Green Practicum Scholarship (See Scholarship Booklet)

V. Your Responsibility as a Member

A. Voting

As a member of Sigma Phi Sigma, it is your responsibility to vote. Only those members who have paid their dues are eligible to cast votes. There is regular voting and special voting. Regular voting takes place during a general membership meeting and may or may not be posted on the Department Board. Such a vote might be on a t-shirt design or whether to have a party. Special voting will take place during a general membership meeting, but will be posted in the agenda on the Department Board. Special voting may be an election of officers, funding a project or other significant item. The three ways you may vote are:

  1. In person during a general membership meeting
  2. Absentee by placing a ballot in the Sigma Phi Sigma suggestion box in Room 152 prior to the general meeting.
  3. By Proxy - you give prior written permission to someone who will be attending the general membership meeting who will cast your vote on your behalf. A sample proxy form can be found at the back of this booklet.

B. Participation

This fraternity can not run without your participation. We need people to be officers, committee chairpersons and worker bees.

1. Officers

The term of office for an officer is one academic year from the Summer Semester to the Spring Semester. Elections are held toward the end of the Spring Semester for the following year. Qualifications of an officer are a 2.50 cumulative grade point average, 15 - 45 credit hours of completed college courses (depending on the position) and a willingness to work. Further information can be found in our Constitution Article IV.

2. Chairperson

There are two types of committees --standing (permanent) and ad hoc (temporary). A standing committee may be for fund-raising while a ad hoc committee may be for a bake sale. A chairperson of a committee is responsible to the President and Executive Board as well as the entire event from beginning to end. A standing committee chairperson will be required to submit a report to the general membership once a month. This report will detail what has been done and what needs to be done. An ad hoc committee chairperson will submit a report at each meeting since this committee is usually of a short duration. If either type of committee handles funds, it will include in its report on how the funds were spent. A sample committee report can be found in the back of this booklet.

3. Members

You are our most important asset. Through your participation in our various endeavors, you will bring publicity to our fraternity, help raise money for operating expenses and help yourself professionally.

VI. Other Items

A. Special meeting

The President of the fraternity has the power to call a special meeting of the fraternity at the written request of six (6) members of the fraternity.

B. Impeachment, Recall or Removal

Elected officers may be removed from office by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the entire voting membership. A vote for removal must be posted on the Department bulleting board at least one week prior to the vote.

C. Amendments

The Constitution may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) majority of all votes cast by the members. A petition to the Executive Board of one-fourth (1/4) of the voting members shall be sufficient grounds for voting on an amendment.