The Chi Phi fraternity, Lehigh’s oldest Greek chapter, reached a milestone of 150 years at the school on Feb. 22. The anniversary also marks 150 years since Greek life has been on Lehigh’s campus.
To commemorate the event, Chi Phi planned a weekend of celebrations, starting with an informal social gathering at Tally Ho Tavern on Feb. 25, followed by a chapter brunch at the house on Feb. 26 and ending with an anniversary banquet at Hotel Bethlehem.
“150 years is an incredible milestone,” said Matt Scheller, the president of Brairfield Alumni Association. “I wanted to create this special opportunity to get all of our alumni back together and celebrate with each other.”
Scheller said current undergraduate members, Chi Phi alumni and members of the board of directors from the leadership of the Chi Phi fraternity were all in attendance.
The alumni and students who came ranged from members of the 1957 graduating class to members of the 2025 graduating class, Scheller said.
“In an event like this when you get to see generations of Chi Phi brothers – some separated in age by 50 or 60 years – come together and interact, I mean you just can’t put a price on that, and it’s just such a special night,” said Steven Hopkins, the Grand Alpha of Chi Phi’s board of directors.
Hopkins said the face-to-face interaction made for a refreshing experience, especially since COVID-19 has restricted gatherings like this from happening in the past two years.
At the banquet guests, who all wore name tags with their graduation year, had an hour to mingle, catch up and meet one another.
For attendees like Craig Mosebach, a Bethlehem resident and member of the 1962 graduating class, the event was not just a great place to meet new people but also see familiar faces.
“This means a lot for the school and to the fraternity, so I am very happy to be back,” Mosebach said.
In addition to connecting and conversing with fellow brothers, attendees also got a tour of the 100-year-old fraternity house, a commemorative plaque presentation and heard remarks from Lehigh President Joseph Helble.
Scheller said Chi Phi is the oldest social fraternity in the country.Princeton University established the first chapter of Chi Phi in 1824.
“We don’t have very many chapters that are 150 years old,” said Michael Azarian, executive director of Chi Phi Fraternity National Staff. “Having that kind of chapter with that kind of longevity gives us a great reason to honor and celebrate them.”
Going forward, Scheller said his goal with the organization is to make sure it stays alive and thriving for another 50 years.
“I have an emotional connection to Chi Phi,” Scheller said. “The organization has so much value from friendships that were made and the idea of being a part of a brotherhood. I want to make sure the undergraduates have the same experience.”