Recently voted by the chapter as our smartest brother is electrical engineering major Stephen Matz. Although, his humbleness always denies that he is. But that who Stephen Matz is for Ohio Nu; a very intelligent and humble person that cares for his brothers. Back before his freshman year of college, Stephen disliked Greek life, and as he puts it, “had no desire to join any sort of Greek-lettered organization.” After some debate, one former SigEp convinced Stephen to apply for the Balanced Man Scholarship, and once he applied, the brothers took notice. He had an impressive academic career up to that point, and the chapter could tell that big things awaited Stephen. Fast forward to January 2017 and Stephen Matz was officially an Ohio Nu Sigma Phi Epsilon brother. Even though Stephen was not there when Ohio Nu received the call that we were officially being chartered, he joined in time to be present for the banquet that was held. The concepts of being a Balanced Man with continual development called out to Stephen. From that moment forward, Stephen and Ohio Nu have grown together. As Stephen puts it, “Joining SigEp was one of three or so actions that profoundly influenced my character and spurred numerous developments, both personally and professionally.” Stephen credits learning more about his leadership style and how he can contribute to the chapter to serving as Chaplain. After being Chaplain, Stephen continued being on Standards Board and the Ritual Team. He has seen his professional development skills grow the most through SigEp. Whether it was through alumni or brothers, huge opportunities always came from SigEp.
Stephen, left, with alumni Dave Huiett and his Big Martin Barnard during the summer 2019 retreat.
As he is about to graduate, Stephen reflected on his experience here at Ohio Nu and brought out what he believes is crucial information to be passed on for future brothers of Ohio Nu. This revolves around the phrase of putting in what you want to get out. SigEp has values it offers, but that one has to work for, so one has to be ready to commit. Stephen states, “I’ve seen many former members join for a semester or two, but then drop out because they don’t see the benefit. Unfortunately, these are also the members who weren’t involved and didn’t find their passion.” Stephens knows that if one keeps at it, they will improve along the way whether it be through experience or mistakes. Stephen puts it best, “There’s a place for everyone in SigEp.” The one thing Stephen will miss the most from Ohio Nu are the relationships he has formed and witnessing brothers develop. As Stephen elaborates, “There’s an incredibly diverse base of brothers in SigEp, and there’s always something new to learn about someone or another experience to share with them.” His favorite memory goes back to his time as Chaplain. Moreover, his trip with the exec board to the Carlson Leadership Academy in Chicago. It was his first major involvement in SigEp, and where he found out what SigEp really meant to him.
After graduating, Stephen is continuing his path of hard work. He will continue his academic career studying for a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering at Northwestern University, with a focus on Signals and Systems. He hopes to develop new and useful technologies to benefit humanity. This is due to his strong interest in research and development and wish to keep learning as much as possible.
Along with his SigEp experience, Stephen would also wish to mention the personal relationships he has formed. Stephen starts off by thanking his Big Martin Barnard, especially for their meaningful conversations about various topics. Outside of brothers, Stephen has would like to thank his girlfriend of three years Leanne Tang. Stephen would like to thank her for always being immensely supportive of his involvement with SigEp and the well-being of Ohio Nu. Due to her positive relationship with Ohio Nu, she was voted in as sweetheart a few semesters ago and recently, she was lavaliered.
Stephen, left, with his girlfriend Leanne.
Stephen, right, with Leanne after she received her lavaliere.
As a special thanks, Stephen’s Big Martin left a surprise heartfelt message for him. “I first met Stephen at SigEp’s Balanced Man Scholarship Banquet in 2016. I had somehow been assigned to mingling at his table to start conversations with him and his parents. What stood out the most to me that night was how observant, intentional, and dedicated Stephen was as an individual. He told me that he wouldn’t be able to join until Spring, but I didn’t want to lose him as a friend. Stephen and I grabbed lunch at the Caf either every week or every other and kept up as best as two introverts could. Little did I know, that I was spending several months of my first year in SigEp bonding with my future Little Brother! Once Stephen accepted his bid, he entered the sandbox that was perfect for him to play with his strengths and weaknesses to the fullest extent. Before long, Big and Little were taking on SigEp in a significant way as Chapter President and Chaplain during the next year! I often find Stephen articulating his gratitude for my leadership that year, but little does he know how much I looked up to him (not just because he’s a couple heads taller than me) but because he had this sense of maturity and profound wisdom that he carried with him. I said it then and I will say it now, I would not be where I am today without Stephen’s leadership. Stephen has impacted so many brothers in ways some will have to discover far into the future. For me, I found a close friend, a true brother, and a hero in Stephen Matz. He was there for me in my darkest lows and saved me from my own powerful doubts on several occasions. Stephen is always completely devoted to anything he puts his heart towards, his brothers included. While he may not have joined for the social aspect of fraternity life, SigEp had a profound impact on Stephen’s personality and Stephen had an even greater lasting impact on SigEp Ohio Nu. As an unspoken hero, Stephen will frequently push aside compliments made towards hi and will reveal how humble he truly is.”
Ohio Nu would like to extend a big round of applause to Stephen for everything he has done at his time here. Stephen is one brother that all brothers can learn something from in the road to become Balanced Men. We wish him and Leanne the best in their futures because we know huge things will come from the both of them.