A fraternity was one of the last places I would have expected to end up at in college, but it turned out that SigEp was the best place for me to end up. Joining SigEp has shaped me into who I am today, and attending Tragos Quest to Greece is the greatest opportunity it has given me. With a selection committee tasked with cutting 300 applicants down to 15-20 undergrads, making this the most competitive program the fraternity has to offer. The Tragos Scholars come from various backgrounds all over the country, and on the quest, we were all pushed to be open to new experiences, challenge each other, and above all, being vulnerable about our feelings and life experiences.
I went into this personal quest to figure out what I wanted to do in life and work on what struggles I have been going through. For a long time I had been struggling to find happiness in what I was doing, but fortunately the wonderful group I went to Greece with helped me find a way to find happiness in my life. After long conversations and intensified self-discovery, I found that spreading love and working to help people is what I want to work towards in every step of my life. After this experience, I am working towards exemplifying brotherly love in everyday life by showing more love to those closest to me in addition to those who I don’t know. Along with that, I am working to make decisions based on a people-centered approach, and towards helping people, which in turn gives me the self-satisfaction I have been seeking.
Outside of the message of love I want to spread on a more personal note I was challenged to deal with my own demons. The quest encouraged me to dig deeper into what instances in my life have made me who I am today. I was able to figure out those impacts and the brothers of this trip have encouraged me to start seeing a therapist to work on those life events that still haunt me. The largest piece I am looking to take back to my chapter at UNI is that no matter who you are, it is okay to get help to work on your mental health. As a society and as a fraternity, we need to be having more conversations about taking care of ourselves, and I want to lead a micro change towards this mindset among my brothers.
In conclusion, I found my time spent in Greece to be the most life-changing experience of my life. I wish everyone could have this experience and figure out more of themselves. While I had to travel halfway around the world to figure out who I was I think anyone is capable of doing it from home.An essential concept the Greeks developed was “Knowing Thyself”. As humans, we must work more consistently to understand and ultimately come to “Know Thyself.” This takes time talking with others about your perception, listening to feedback and spending time alone in thought to figure out who you want to become. While challenging, all of this can lead to a much happier life and lead to finding meaning and purpose in life.
Meet the Author
Jacob Levang ’20
Business Management Major
Former VP of Finance & Chaplain