Lambda Phi Epsilon was founded in 1981 at the campus of the University of California at Los Angeles by Mr. Craig Ishigo, who was the principal founding father, together with eighteen other men. The goal of the fraternity was to rise above the various limitations to which traditional Asian American institutions were subject to. While traditional Asian campus groups were frequently split along lines of national origins, the founders sought an alliance that drew its membership equally from the different sections of the Asian American community. Their idea was that the brothers would ultimately connect the gaps through their affiliation with a common organization.
In order to ease the process of fast expansion and to seek normalization throughout the nation, the existing six chapters came together in 1990 on Memorial Day, to create the Lambda Phi Epsilon National Fraternity. At this meeting, a national governing body was created to better manage each individual chapters efforts, a national philanthropy was adopted, national expansion policies applied and Memorial Day weekend was selected as the official date for the annual convention of Lambda Phi Epsilon National. Lambda Phi Epsilon was the first nationally recognized Asian-American Interest Fraternity.
In the active unit, many programs were initiated to address the demands of the collegiate brotherhood throughout the country and abroad. The National Service Program adopted many philanthropies nationally. The most important and notable is the Asian American Bone Marrow Donor Program. To this date, no other organization in the USA has notably enrolled more people to the Asian bone marrow donor library than Lambda Phi Epsilon. The National Academic Committee created guidelines and scholarship programs to foster academic excellence in our collegiate chapters.
Today, there are hundred of thousands of brothers across the United States and around the globe. Lambda Phi Epsilon National Fraternity persists to strive to achieve its motto, “To Be Leaders Among Men,” by giving services to assist brothers in attain their fullest potential. In the end, it is the principles of Lambda Phi Epsilon that will encourage all brothers to lead their communities to a brighter and better way of life.
The fraternal foundation has allowed Lambda Phi Epsilon to continually maintain the leadership and quality of membership so that we may have the ability to meet our status quo and also continually better ourselves as members of our society and as students. With a variety of social event and services planned through the year, we welcome everyone to see what Lambda Phi Epsilon has to offer. As we all know, College is not only about education and enhancing your mind but it is also about improving your personal development and establishing oneself as a person. Let Lambda Phi Epsilon help you achieve these goals.
As birds were chirping outside, Yuan Ren sat in his dorm for hours thinking of a new name for the interest group, he decided to stay with the old name, BUYA, The Brotherhood of United Young Asians. After all, what’s most important is concentrating on how to give new meaning to an old name.
One day, Charles says, “Hey Burita, I heard a few guys are trying to establish a fraternity interest group again”
“Again? What do you mean? We’ve been doing it for three years already.”
“So do you wan to do it?”
“I don’t, but I’ll do it if you do it.”
After five minutes. “Sure? C’mon, I’ll do it if you do it.”
Party a Chinese Restaurant (Szechuan) Fall 2001.
In the men’s room, a tall fellow approaches another one, not nearly as tall.
“Hey fellow, what’s your name?”
“Nice, my name is Burita.”
After washing and drying their hands, Mr. Burita Em says, “Hey, I’m in the Asian-American Interest fraternity. We’re meeting up pretty soon, if you want you should come check it out.”
So that is the story of how determination brought together different crowds of the Asian American network at the University of Virginia come together and made possible their dream. In a school were traditions prevailed, these young men felt an urge to undertake off the beaten path. They truly chose to face the fork in the road and head on straight.
One evening late in May, Mr. Tuan Huynh and Mr. Yuan Ren gathered a group of hopefuls as well as Mr. Charles Lota and Mr. Burita Em, members of past interest association groups in the lounge of the Tuttle Dorms. They wanted to introduce themselves to each other and get to know each other, but as ambitious persons with a one goal in common. Even though the course of the next few weeks, these men kept calling out fellow members of past interest groups such as Mr. Thinh Nguyen as well as recruit other prospective brothers, among them Mr. Vivek Taneja, Mr. Eugene Lee and Mr. John Lee.
When the summer started, these men concluded that some things couldn’t be rushed, and that their friendships would take time to shape. After meeting for dinner with Tonka, an alum from Sunny Buffalo, and McGruff, a newly crossed charter from the University of Rutgers, any doubts that had risen between these men by now it was history. They promised to themselves that nothing would prevent them back from accomplishing their dreams.
As fall came around, these men proceeded with the journey towards perpetual brotherhood. When they were leaving after a general meeting, Mr. Tuan Huynh realized Mr. Cheng Lu and Mr. Terry Hsiung, were old high school friends with his roommate. The group spoke to the two freshmen about the fraternity and interests of the group, its common goals and aspirations not only as an interest group but as a brotherhood that nurtures appreciation of the Asian-American culture. At the end, the group concluded that before they could seek acceptance into a national brotherhood of men they needed to seek for brotherhood between one another.
After 12 month of hard work and determination, eleven men rose from the rain-battered fields of Baltimore, Maryland on March 16th, 2002 at 6:20 am in the morning.