RYAN KELLY / ZETA PSI FRATERNITY

REVENGE OF THE NERDS 

Age: 21

 Location: Austin, TX 

Relationship Status: Single

BACKGROUND:

Ryan is a Zeta Psi fraternity brother at University of Texas at Austin (go Longhorns!). He's one of the more senior members of the frat, and credits Zeta Psi for shaping his identity as he journeys into manhood. He's helped set the tone of making Zeta Psi an atypical frat- one that promotes inclusivity, respect and open-mindedness. That being said, the Zeta Psi brothers are NOT known for being the "cool frat." Their parties are duds, and they have a hard time recruiting new members. Ryan is actively trying to create a buzz about Zeta Psi with little success. Their current tactics include lackluster magic tricks, and amateur caricature drawings. People are not impressed.   At present, there are only 31 active members (a typical frat at UT Austin has around 70.) They are a mere blip on the radar of the UT frat scene. Even though the brothers attempt to host events, no one wants to come. Ryan and his lovable band of nerds want their classmates to see what Zeta Psi has to offer! 

WHY NOW: 

 As more fraternities get bad press each year, the boys of Zeta Psi want to create an inclusive space where all are welcome. Since they are far from being your stereotypical fraternity, they are having a really tough time recruiting new members. If they don't have at least 10-15 new members by next fall, the chapter will lose their housing and close permanently. The Zeta Psi house is hosting their annual unofficial SXSW event this March. Last year the turnout was dismal. Ryan is emceeing this year and he's scared he's going to blow it. The main purpose of the event is to recruit new members, if they don't they are in big trouble. This party could be the key to bolstering their declining membership and making them a desirable name at UT. They're hoping with some out-of-the-box thinking and a little help from the Fab 5, they can pull off the party of the year. 

CALLING IN THE EXPERTS:

FASHION: Ryan is interested in fashion and style, but he has no clue what's "in". His default look is a wrinkly Hawaiian shirt and ratty jeans. He has tried "thrifting" but always comes home empty-handed because he can't make decisions. His clothes can be found in crumpled piles around his bedroom - the only thing in his closet are a random box of pasta and dead mice for his pet snakes. The Zeta Psi guys aren't known for being the most stylish. Most of the guys dress in sweatshirts, jeans, and flip-flops.

GROOMING: Ryan's hair is a "mop top." He's going for a long, shaggy look, but his Frat Brothers say he has "too much hair for the size of his head." His facial hair is scruffy and unkempt. He's love to rock a stylish beard, but doesn't know how to pull it off. 

DESIGN:  The house has been the registered Zeta Psi residence for over 30 years and 3+ decades of frat boy wear-and-tear has left its mark. Housing 13 brothers, the design aesthetic is a tribute to Animal House, with decorations consisting of beer bottles, beer boxes and a hodge-podge of paintings found in the trash or at second-hand stores. The furniture has been handed down from generation after generation and there's a collective feeling that life might be growing on their various common chairs and sofas.The guys have a lot of unused space in their backyard and have had dreams of making it a usable area for recruitment events, however, no one can agree on the best way to use it. Overall, the brothers need an updated pad that reflects the kind of desirable frat they hope to be. Ryan's room in particular is filled with plates uneaten macaroni and cheese, dust, and his pet snakes. 

FOOD: Zeta Psi is one of the only Fraternities on campus that does not have a designated Chef. Group meals usually come from the local pizzeria or fast food joint. Ryan would love to learn how to cook, but he overthinks, fumbles and fails spectacularly in the kitchen. 

CULTURE: Creating a frat environment that shirks toxic masculinity and "boys will be boys" culture is important to the Zeta Psi guys. They've had friends that have had bad experiences with other frats at UT and they want their brotherhood to feel welcoming and respectful for everyone. Zeta Psi doesn't have a sister sorority and they need help forging that relationship.They want to strike the perfect balance of being a cool frat, while also being a safe space. 

EVENT:  Ryan emcees Zeta Psi's annual recruitment event.

Nominator: Mac Phillips - Zeta Psi President

  • Mac is one of Ryan's closest friends in the Frat House. He is tired of seeing Ryan standing in the shadows during parties and events, and wants him to confront his social anxiety head on.