Gerald Lecovin: Jewish Fraternities at UBC
Date:Monday, February 21, 2011
ID:Digital audio recording #: 20.11-02
GL: University was a lot of fun for me, hard work but a lot of fun. Realizing that I was very young and I wanted to be a lawyer, and thinking that, first of all I had a very cherubic face, thinking that no one would want a lawyer…you know, if I went I would be out by the time I was 20, 19 or 20, and I thought no one is going to go to a lawyer who’s 19 or 20, so I decided to take two courses. I took BComm, Bachelor of Commerce and Law. In those days you could take a double degree and they gave you credit for an extra year, so you could take, I think, two years of commerce and three years of law and that gave you two degrees, instead of three years of commerce. So I went in, took my first year of arts, two years of commerce, and three years of law. I was…the Jewish kids at that time, there was still a bit of a division. Well no, there wasn’t as much of a division, there were two Jewish fraternities on campus. Oh, remember I couldn’t remember the name of the girls’ organization, Jewish organization; it was called B’nai B’rith Girls, BBGs for short. So there were two Jewish fraternities on campus, and one Jewish sorority. The ZBT [Zeta Beta Tau], the Zebes; the SAM [Sigma Alpha Mu], the Sammies; and DPhiEs [Delta Phi Epsilon], the Deefers. They were the girls. And I belonged to the ZBTs. Mostly, I shouldn’t say mostly, a lot of the guys from Magee that I had grown up with, but by that time they were mixing back and forth, so the guys from the east side, the west side, it didn’t matter. The Jewish girls on campus, it was a fairly new Jewish sorority; in those days there was a lot of sorority and fraternity things, a lot of activities, and a lot of social life was in fraternity and sorority life. And there was a picture in the Jewish Historical Society magazine, I think it was on the back cover, of a whole party of people; they sent away and they asked did anyone know the names of all these people. And I think I sent back mentioning the names of some of the people I didn’t know. That was a picture of a ZBT party, and I was there. I was one of the people in the picture.