In an effort to highlight the young leaders who are leading undergraduate chapters across the nation, we at Watch The Yard reached out to the brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.’s Alpha Mu Chapter at Northwestern University and did an interview with Adam Montgomery the president of the chapter.
The position of president of an undergraduate chapter of a Black fraternity is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes. 20-year-old Montgomery has used the position to gain new leadership experience, improve the lives of other students on campus and help the community around him.
We interviewed the Biology, Pre-med major and talked about his position, goals, future and what it means to hold a leadership on campus in the digital age.
Read the full interview below.
What does it mean to be a chapter president to you?
To me a chapter President isn’t always someone who envisions what their chapter should be, but is one who can lead it’s members to carry out that vision. A leader that is best able to represent their chapter and someone who always puts their best foot forward to better the chapter. I think its the greatest honor to have the trust of the people in my chapter to lead them, and the trust of the alumni to keep their chapter alive.
What made you decide to attend the Northwestern University for undergrad?
I had always wanted to attend a prestigious university. Northwestern came to me through family from Chicago who only said good things. Aside from that I knew that it was one of the schools that would give me the best education I could get for my major, and would best guide me to medical school.
What specific initiatives is your chapter heading up this year and how do you think they will improve the campus/surrounding community?
This year we want to extend our influence on Northwestern’s black community by offering more collaborations with other black organizations. Even though our black community is small as Northwestern is a PWI, I want to show that we can all still be interconnected between our own orgs as one would see at schools with larger black communities. Additionally we want deepen our connection with other orgs in the NPHC.
What made you want to pledge Alpha Phi Alpha?
The reason I chose Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. was because I wanted to be around more educated black men of high stature, as well as become apart of brotherhood and mentoring community that I hadn’t found within my community growing up. There weren’t any greeks in my family, so when I originally heard about fraternities and sororities, they were from the IFC and PHA, which weren’t for me. Eventually I found out about the NPHC and saw what the Alphas were doing and knew that it was for me. I fortunately had the opportunity to pledge as a solo, which all the more better led me to truly believe that Alpha was one of the greatest things that have come into my life.
What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?
I think Alpha Mu is so unique because of the fact that we are still so connected to our Alumni. We are currently coming up to our centennial celebration in 2022 and even our oldest alumni are still just as supportive of us as our most recent ones. As a black greek fraternity from a PWI, that support is really influential to our chapter and to those looking from the outside who seek to join.
We now live in a digital world, what do you think undergraduate chapters across all orgs need to do to represent themselves online in 2018?
I would say follow trends on social media. Whether that greek trends or trends on campus. Most, if not all, presence on social media is good. That being said, its always best show the best of your organization when going online, because what you do or say cannot always be taken the same way. As most chapters have found, the best way to get the word out for events is to put it on your IG story or post a flyer/video. This has really grown our chapter presence over the past few years as we move away from paper flyers.
What does leadership mean to you?
Like I mentioned earlier, leadership is an always changing and growing skill. It’s taken me a long time to grow into the leader I am today, as nobody starts out as the perfect leader. A leader is a listener who can best deliver out what people need. It is also about empowering others to do for themselves and give them the opportunity to do their best, and be proud of it.
Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?
I think Watch the Yard is super important to Black greekdom. I want to recognize how Watch The Yard promotes the positivity of Black greekdom and highlights the importance and relativity of Black greekdom in today’s society. You all highlight each organization very well ,and everyone is always trying to make Watch The Yard, because of the exposure and positive influence you have in our communities.
What does brotherhood mean to you?
The meaning of brotherhood to me has always been hard to describe. While most people would relate brotherhood to the feeling they get from their line-brothers, I got my sense from the brothers that helped bring me into Alpha, and from those in other chapters I met along the journey. I was able to find that a brother is one who continually pushes you to be your best self. Brotherhood is about being able talk with someone and to be the most truthful, without the fear of consequences. Brotherhood is helping someone without expecting something in return. We leave nobody behind and are always looking out for each other.
What do you plan on doing after graduation?
I plan on going to medical school and hopefully joining the graduate chapter in my area.
We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Adam Montgomery for his work as the president of Alpha Mu Chapter which has a long legacy that spans back to 1922.