Allegheny College fraternities have joined together with alumni to support the devastated country of Haiti — including one Allegheny graduate who was on a mission there when the 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck.
Dominic Randazzo, ’05, and his wife were working in Haiti when the earthquake took place; neither he nor his wife was harmed. Following the event, Randazzo has begun his own mission of sorts, and has been very active in the months after.
Since the earthquake, he has kept in direct contact with the college. Randazzo has reported Haiti’s situation and ways that the college can provide assistance and relief. Not only has he provided valuable information, but he has given purpose to a few Allegheny fraternities.
As an Allegheny student, Randazzo valued Greek life. As an integral part of Phi Delta Theta, he assisted in bringing the fraternity back to campus and still corresponds with the brothers.
Phi Delta Theta President Zeben Ashton, ’12, said the despair felt in Haiti hits closer to home knowing someone like Randazzo. As a whole, the Phi Delts have been driven by this feeling of empathy to organize a fundraiser and send relief to Haiti.
“It really hits home with Dominic,” Ashton said. “He was an important member of Allegheny’s community, and now the fraternities are coming together, as a community, to support the cause.”
In addition to the effect the situation has had on the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, the other four fraternities on campus have taken part in the effort.
Robert Mortimer, ’12, treasurer of the Interfraternal Council, is also working on the relief effort. He stated that the IFC is donating through the Clinton-Bush Fund. They chose this venue because the money can be transmitted without any administrative fees; every penny raised will go directly to the relief effort.
“We specially want to thank the efforts of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity and the Advancement of Black Culture group on campus,” Mortimer said. “They teamed together for a dance that raised over $400.”
Furthermore, the IFC is requesting donations from every brother. So far, it has been met with great success. They are currently in the stages of planning more fundraisers to take advantage of the overwhelming support they have received.
Perhaps the biggest supporter of this fundraising is Joe DiChristina, Allegheny College Dean of Students. He believes there is always an outpouring of sympathy on occasions like these, but this is more than that. The significance is having someone there that many know and feel for.
DiChristina said the Allegheny community “has been blessed.”
“Our number of Peace Corps and students volunteering rivals colleges like Penn State and Pitt [University of Pittsburgh],” DiChristina said.
He believes that events such as these do not get discussed enough. There are many Allegheny students that perform good deeds in and around the community, but don’t receive any credit for it.
DiChristina said this is particularly beneficial to the fraternities because they often have a negative stigma surrounding them. If fraternities received better recognition, he said their value would be less questionable to campus life.
Dominic Randazzo, when he graduated in 2005, was acknowledged on Time magazine’s Top 100 College Men list. Randazzo is currently working with his wife and volunteers to assist the recovery effort.
If anyone wishes contribute to the fraternities’ cause, they are encouraged to drop off donations at the Office of Student Involvement attention Gretchen Symons, director of Student Involvement.