Georgia Tech Homecoming wasn’t just about winning football this year for Alpha Epsilon Pi. Hours before the Oct. 13 game against Duke University, the Zeta chapter of Tech’s AEPi celebrated the dedication of its newly rebuilt fraternity house at 714 Techwood Drive with a ribbon cutting, open house, mezuzah hanging and tailgate.
About 300 students and alumni showed off the pristine and functional 12,500-square-foot frat house, which is positioned in a prime spot directly in front of Bobby Dodd Stadium.
In 1920, the Zeta chapter of AEPi became the sixth in the U.S. AEPi is the only fraternity based on Jewish values with a decidedly Jewish mission: to develop future leaders of the world’s Jewish communities. It was certainly touching to see mezuzah on each and every bedroom door.
Local architect and AEPi alum and chapter president Warren Epstein (Class of ’56) was the genius behind the redesign. “The house was in a state of deterioration after a fire and just years of being ‘worn out.’ Talk of renovation began in 2010; but things got more serious in 2016 with a new group of younger alumni. The style concept went from traditional to contemporary. There was a formal interview selection process along with a few other competitive architecture firms,” Epstein said.
“The highlights of the new building are an open dining/meeting area for 80, sleeping accommodations for 40, a suite for the resident adviser, an upstairs ‘founders’ meeting room, and total compliance with the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) for handicapped use.”
Alumni, dressed in traditional Tech gold, down to the socks, were proud to leave this mark on future generations. About 220 donors supported the renovation, raising more than $2 million. “My brother, Steve Caller (‘63), a former president, flew in from Lexington, Ky., and was active in helping the project come to fruition. He declared, `We old Jackets still have our sting!’”
Despite the positive energy at the ribbon cutting and open house, it was a heartbreaker for Georgia Tech football. The Yellow Jackets lost to Duke 28-14.