Sigma Alpha Epsilon depends on your generosity to elevate our members’ experience to the highest levels—learning how to become True Gentlemen and taking that knowledge out into the world. We want to highlight just one of our many donors who support this organization.
James Balandrán is the 2021 March to the Madness MVP, making the single largest donation during this year’s tournament. He is a Pearl Level donor and an Archon Level donor of the 2020-2021 Archon Circle. James supports the SAE Foundation to ensure that the organization can continue to give future generations the amazing experience that membership has to offer. Recently he started the Fleur-de-lis Fund, a scholarship to benefit underrepresented brothers in the Fraternity. To contribute to the fund, please click here. Read more about James below and click here for more information about the SAE Foundation.
What is your favorite SAE memory?
One of my favorite memories is attending Leadership School after my freshman year. It was the first time I got to experience that ΣAE is larger than just my chapter. I met Brothers from around the Realm, grew as a leader, and reaffirmed that my decision to join SAE was something that would impact the rest of my life.
What offices did you hold?
As an undergraduate, I held multiple positions, including Eminent Deputy Archon, Member Educator, and IFC President. Nationally, I served as co-chairman of the Convention Ritual Committee and Leadership School Ambassador. After graduation, I continued my involvement with ΣAE. For the past six years, I have served as Province Sigma Archon. As an alum, I have also held many other roles, including Deputy Chairman of the Council of Province Archons, Liaison to the ΣAE Financial & Housing Corporation, Chapter Adviser, and Alumni Association President. I have also served on multiple national committees, including the Permanent Committee on the Ritual and a facilitator for the DeVotie Ritual Institute and many other educational programs.
Why do you give to SAE?
I give both to the ΣAE Foundation and my time as a volunteer to make sure that Brothers today have the same opportunities to attend educational programs, meet other Brothers and grow as a True Gentleman that I did. I give to ensure that the ΣAE Foundation can continue to give out scholarships to as many deserving Brothers as possible. Lastly, I give to make sure that the next generation of Brothers can join ΣAE and experience the immeasurable things it has to offer.
What have you done professionally?
When I was a Sophomore, I interviewed for a position at a technology consulting company. During the interview with the CEO, I found out that he was an ΣAE from another chapter. After 11 years, I left that firm and started my own company. I currently serve as Managing Partner of a technology consulting company and an Esports Training Academy, where we use technology to make companies, coaches, and players the best they can be.
What advice do you have for undergraduates?
Take every chance you get to create experiences, hold officer positions in your chapter, attend national events, and apply for an internship in your field of study. Every experience, especially those outside of your comfort zone, will help you grow and shape your future self. As long as you use the True Gentleman as a guide, you will succeed.
Membership is for life. Your membership doesn’t end with your undergraduate experience. As you graduate, stay engaged with your Fraternity by joining an Alumni Association or volunteering. The alumni experience in ΣAE will allow you to continue making connections and give back to the organization that gave us so much.