Ever miss your momâ€™s excellent meals or solid advice? Colorado Stateâ€™s Sigma Phi Epsilon house mother Rita Williams fills this mother role in the hearts of the fraternity.
â€œSig Ep is a home away from home. Rita is a mom away from home,â€ said former House President Bijah Gibson.
Originally hired as a cook, Rita Williams has impacted much more than appetites in her 15 years at Sigma Phi Epsilon.
Officially, her duties include cooking lunch and dinner Monday through Friday. Williams is also in charge of housekeeping, maintenance and cooking for special events. As a housemother, she acts as a liaison between alumni and undergraduates.
Unofficially, Williams is the go-to-girl for good advice, keeping the Sig Ep boys in line with her insight.
â€œShe knows so much with 15 years in this environment, thereâ€™s not much she hasnâ€™t seen,â€ said current Sig Ep President Billy Raddell.
Gibson described hypothetical life without Williams as being life without a friend. The daily conveniences of food and advice she provides for the house are deeply appreciated.When it comes to special events, Williams acts as a party planner and hostess. She caters for the Sig Ep spring formal and prepares a tailgate for every home football game. According to Gibson, she does a â€œclassy, good job.â€
This is no mere task, as tailgates can include up to 400 people.
â€œRita works so hard but always manages to laugh in between,â€ Gibson said.
This housemotherâ€™s impact is remembered long after graduation.
â€œShe is invited to alumni weddings,â€ Gibson said. â€œRita is more than a cook. She plays a big role in a lot of guysâ€™ lives.â€
The Sig Ep fraternity boys appreciate Williams, a feeling that is reciprocated.
â€œI wouldnâ€™t be here after 15 years if I didnâ€™t enjoy what Iâ€™m doing, working with the guys,â€ Williams said.
Sig Ep is the only fraternity on campus with a house mother. So why donâ€™t other frats have one to come home to?
Gibson said that many frats on campus donâ€™t have a facility or a need for a house mother. Funding or lack of necessity can be other reasons to not have a house mom.
The role of a housemother is mutually beneficial to both Sig Epâ€™s members and to Williams.
Williams said that she enjoys the flexibility of her job.
â€œIâ€™m kind of like my own boss with menu creativity,â€ Williams said. â€œHaving summer off is a definite positive.â€
Staff writer Bonnie Cleveland can be reached at email@example.com._