Success Story: Fraternity Develops Leadership with STYLE


Sigma Chi

The Sigma Chi Fraternity, renowned for its commitment to developing values-based leaders dedicated to enhancing character, campus, and community, set forth a vision to become the foremost collegiate leadership development organization. This vision guided Sigma Chi in creating a curriculum that would rival leadership programs offered to leaders of Fortune 500 companies. With a vast network of 244 undergraduate chapters and 125 alumni chapters, Sigma Chi is one of the largest fraternal organizations in existence. In 1997, Sigma Chi Horizons was introduced as a leadership development initiative for its undergraduate members. To realize the Horizons curriculum, the Sigma Chi Foundation engaged the services of Footprints Consulting and Training, a Denver-based consulting firm.

“Sigma Chis embark on a leadership journey from the first day they join the fraternity. The Horizons Program is our way of ensuring that their journey is a successful one.” — Michael Greenberg, Sigma Chi Grand Consul


The solution centered on the TRACOM SOCIAL STYLE Model, a behavior-based interpersonal skills model, forming the foundation of the Horizons curriculum. The program aligns with the Spirit of Sigma Chi, which is founded on the belief that friendship among members, sharing a common ideal, and possessing diverse temperaments, talents, and convictions are superior to friendship among those with identical traits. The six-day Horizons Program takes place in Snowbird, Utah, offering an optimal environment for outdoor adventures, interactive learning, and inspired reflection. The participants engage in pre-session readings, followed by immersive on-site, whole-brain learning experiences that stimulate their minds and bodies. The program’s structure includes post-session mentoring by alumni and follow-up electronic leadership lessons and coaching. Alumni play a pivotal role as mentors, leading small groups of eight students throughout the course.

Elaine Palladino, CEO of Footprints Consulting, underscores the valuable interaction between the students and alumni coaches. These coaches exemplify the effectiveness of values-based leadership in both the workplace and personal lives, offering real-life illustrations of leadership concepts. The SOCIAL STYLE assessment also plays a significant role, providing participants with detailed feedback on how they are perceived by others and fostering self-awareness among the students. The Horizons Program, backed by the SOCIAL STYLE Model and driven by the commitment to values-based leadership, equips Sigma Chi’s undergraduate members with essential skills and insights, enabling them to become exemplary leaders both within the fraternity and in their future endeavors.