This week’s Fraternity Friday is particularly special as I got to speak to someone whose college experience has been unique to everyone else I’ve spoken to. This week, I spoke with Jared Stubbs, an Army veteran and Vice President of Health and Safety for Theta Chi.
Jared joined the United States Army at the age of 17 as a junior in high school through a program that allowed him to join with parental consent. Between his junior and senior year of high school, he went out to boot camp and found out that his military work counted for credit towards school. He was able to go straight to deployment and earn his high school diploma while also beginning his service to our country.
He then was sent out to Missouri to begin his job training, where he became a Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear Specialist. His job duties included dealing with situations related to chemical and nuclear warfare, as well as being the go-to person if nuclear chemicals were on board when he and his unit were deployed.
Jared completed three years of an initial tour in the Army, mainly in Iraq. Jared says one of the things he is most proud of is a time he was able to provide training to Iraqi troops during their basic training. A few leaders of the Iraqi Army contacted the United States army and asked for help training their soldiers. Jared says that he feels like the work he did during that time was important, and that the knowledge he passed on to the soldiers is something he hopes is
continued to be taught to soldiers for many years.
Initially, Jared was not interested in joining a fraternity. When he came to UMaine his freshman year, he felt isolated and unable to relate to the people around him because he was placed in a freshman dorm. He knew a few brothers of Theta Chi, and started hanging out with them at the house more often. As he began to spend more time with them, the brothers offered him a pledge, which he initially declined. In the spring of 2018, he was still hesitant but eventually accepted a bid. Ironically, not only is Theta Chi’s philanthropic organization the United Service Organization (USO), an organization that provides support to service members and veterans, but the fraternity itself originated as a military fraternity at Norwich University. Jared has found the family that he had been missing after leaving his military unit, and says that his brothers are people that he can rely on and who hold him and each other accountable.
In Theta Chi, Jared’s role is the Vice President of Health and Safety. In this role, he oversees and ensures the wellbeing of the chapter, brothers, and the community. This includes anything from recognizing signs of drug use and abuse to signs of depression and overall health of the members. This role is very important as it increases awareness of issues that fraternities and men in general often don’t talk about. This allows more communication between the brothers and a safe place for them to talk about concerns for their health and hold each other accountable when things aren’t going right.
Jared is a marketing major from Dunstable, Massachusetts. He says that while he doesn’t have a specific plan for a career with this major, he believes that the communication skills and public relations skills he has learned will help him in his goal of a career in law enforcement. As he has already gone through the physical training that many police academies require, he has set himself up well for a bright future.
Thank you, Jared, for your service to our country and for everything you have contributed to the community and your fraternity!