Upsilon Pi Epsilon
Initiation Ceremony


Setting and General Initiation Instructions
Initiation Team
The ceremony of initiation will be conducted by three active members who assume the parts of Upsilon, Pi, and Epsilon. The President of a Chapter shall ordinarily take the part of Upsilon. The President will designate the members to enact the other parts. Often the Vice-President and Secretary of a Chapter assume the parts of Pi and Epsilon. If other members are especially qualified by virtue of good voices or other talents, the President may properly appoint them to any of the parts.
Room Setup
The room for the initiation ceremony will be arranged with a long table at one end. The table is covered with a dark cloth material draped over the front so the feet of those seated behind it are invisible to the audience. In front of the table, six chairs are placed in a slightly semi-circular arrangement facing the audience. These six chairs represent the founding committee of Upsilon Pi Epsilon. To the left side of the table and at right angles to it, chairs are arranged in one or more rows for the Honorary, Faculty, or Alumni candidates. Seating of the initiates should be so arranged that they face the six chairs and can readily be seen by Upsilon, Pi, and Epsilon. Other members and guests should be seated facing the table, but behind the initiates.
Upsilon, Pi, Epsilon sit behind the table, Upsilon occupies the center chair with Pi to the right and Epsilon to the left of Upsilon. The leader of the installation team is seated to the far left of Epsilon and the leader’s assistants are placed either alongside (if the table's length permits) or behind him or her.
It is best if the candidates do not enter the initiation room before the beginning of the ceremony. A few verbal instructions by Epsilon before bringing the candidates to their places should eliminate confusion on their part. For example, the candidate should stand until he is asked to be seated.
It is desirable to have a large model of the Upsilon Pi Epsilon key illuminated during the entire ceremony. Eleven white candles are arranged in front of the key with the first four, the middle, and last four lit. This corresponds to the eleven binary bits on the key. The lit candles are the ones and the unlit candles are the zeroes. Other decorations appropriate to Upsilon Pi Epsilon may be used as the Chapter desires. Flowers may be used to enhance the general effect of a solemn, dedicatory ceremony.
Chapter Roll Book
The chapter's roll book is placed on the table directly in front of the candles. This book is a bound volume that is kept as a source book of the chapter's members and history. A small spotlight or candlelight should be used to illuminate the book during the entire ceremony. The book is closed, but an index ribbon lies at the spot where the initiates' names will be recorded. It is opened and signed as stated in the ceremony. A desk-set black ink pen stands behind the roll book.
The lighting in the room is subdued to enhance the general effect. It need not be so dark that Epsilon has difficulty in reading the initiates' names, but it should approach that level. It is most desirable that Epsilon learn the initiates' names well enough so that he or she does not need to read them. This should be possible in all cases save those in which large groups are initiated.
The ceremony should be so conducted as to create a lasting feeling on the part of the initiate that he/she, personally, is being honored and, at the same time, that this honor requires the initiate to rededicate himself/herself to the ideals enumerated by the conductors.
• All parts of the ceremony will be read slowly, clearly, and distinctly.
• It is strongly urged that the complete Ceremony of Initiation be practiced at least once by the conductors prior to the initiation.
The initiation may be followed by whatever further ceremony or social event a Chapter may desire. It is best that this take place elsewhere than in the initiation room.
Ceremony of Initiation
New initiates should leave the room. Epsilon shall arrange them in alphabetical order by group: honorary, faculty, alumni, and students as appropriate.
After the active members and their guests have seated themselves and Upsilon has determined that all is in readiness, the lights of the room shall be dimmed to the extent necessary to provide a solemn atmosphere. Upsilon will secure attention and say:
UPSILON: Members of Upsilon Pi Epsilon, let us begin our …nth initiation ceremony of the UPE Chapter at … institution. Epsilon, will you please present the candidates.
Honorary inductees: if there are no honorary inductees, omit this section.
Epsilon leaves the room to return followed by the honorary candidates as a group. Epsilon places them in front of the six symbolic chairs so that they face Upsilon and standing to their left says:
EPSILON: Upsilon, I have the honor and pleasure of presenting the following candidate(s) for initiation as honorary member(s) of Upsilon Pi Epsilon: … (State name of each person in group)
UPSILON: We are happy to have you among us. Please be seated and observe our ceremony of initiation.
Epsilon shows honorary candidate(s) to proper seat(s) and leaves room to return with remaining groups of inductees
Faculty inductees: Repeat the procedure above, substituting faculty for honorary. If there are no faculty inductees, omit this section.
Alumni inductees: Repeat the procedure above, substituting alumni for honorary. If there are no alumni inductees, omit this section.
Student Inductees:
Epsilon leaves the room to return followed by student candidates for active membership as a group. Epsilon places them in front of the six symbolic chairs so that they face Upsilon and standing to their left says:
EPSILON: Upsilon, I present these candidates for initiation as active members in the … institution Chapter of Upsilon Pi Epsilon. Please remain standing as your names are called. Read names with a noticeable pause after each.
UPSILON: Have they fulfilled all the requirements for their initiation?
EPSILON: They have.
UPSILON: The candidates will please be seated. Pause.
We have heard by what name you are known. Now let us consider by what traits you are known. Scholarship ... Leadership ... Ethicality ... and Widespread Interests ... It is because you possess these and many other desirable traits that you are here at this moment. UPE extends you a warm welcome.
Pi will now tell you the history and some of the ideals of our organization.
PI: It is customary and appropriate that people unite with common bonds of interest. To display these bonds, characteristic symbols are used as identification. To the world, the symbols represent a society with particular goals and interests; however, to the membership the symbols have more significant meaning, since they represent the unique association of the members with their society. So it is with UPE.
Three historical symbols in the Computing and Information Disciplines are the Zero, the One, and the Abacus.
The Zero and the One make the binary character set. The circle form of the Zero is symbolic of the encompassing nature of the Computing and Information Disciplines. Enclosed within the circle are the aspects, attributes and activities related to this field as well as some facet from almost every discipline of culture.
The One signifies the unity of purpose of UPE, the united effort to promote the field and its contributions. In a similar nature, the One characterizes the individual effort each member of UPE has made. The One is the positive symbol of Truth, Integrity, and Maturity that are basic to the strength of UPE.
Computing and Information Disciplines are relatively young disciplines and first recognized in the mid-twentieth century. The heritage of computing, however, stems to the origins of humanity. The Abacus, the earliest and most used calculating device, symbolizes this heritage. The members of UPE pledge to respect the contributions previously made and to build upon that foundation. Pride in our heritage is self-evident in the great advances made in the Computing and Information Disciplines.
Epsilon or Upsilon should point out the features of the key and the six chairs as they are cited below.
The Emblem of UPE takes the general form of a Key. The Key represents the entry to our professional association within which individual limitations can be overcome. This access also includes the responsibility to promote the goals of the society. The manner in which you view and use this Key may determine how many gates of opportunity will be opened to you.
The Binary digits of the Key represent the number ONE THOUSAND NINE HUNDRED AND SIXTY-SEVEN, the date of our founding. Also, the Greek characters spanning across the Key identify the Society to the world as Upsilon Pi Epsilon.
In the interest of tradition, these six chairs have been placed before you. They are symbolic of the many discussions held by the original group of six students. The first chapter of UPE was chartered and recognized on January 10, 1967 at Texas A&M University .
UPSILON: The candidates for membership will now stand.
Wait for quiet.
Raise your right hand and repeat this pledge after me ...
"I ( state your name ), … having heard and understood ... the purposes and tenets of Upsilon Pi Epsilon ... do solemnly pledge, ... always to respect and promote ... the aims and ideals of this Society." Pause.
Please be seated. Wait for quiet.
I will repeat the pledge you have just taken. "I … having heard and understood ... the purposes and tenets of Upsilon Pi Epsilon ... do solemnly pledge ... always to respect and promote the aims and ideals of this Society."
With this pledge you become one of us ... a member of UPE. Remember, your life and your acts will bear witness to the Honor of the Computing and Information Professions.
Pause two to five seconds.
One thing yet remains to be done. Your names must be entered in our Chapter Book to confirm the pledge you have just taken. Epsilon will open the book.
Epsilon opens the book to the appropriate page and arranges the light and pen for convenience of the initiates.
UPSILON: We will ask all initiates to stand and sign. Epsilon will assist you.
Let (honorary) (faculty) (alumni) sign first as a single group followed by active members.
UPSILON: Epsilon, have all new members entered their names in our Chapter Book?
EPSILON: They have.
UPSILON: Then let the book be closed.
EPSILON, closes it: It is closed.
UPSILON: Please be seated.
Pause two to five seconds.
UPSILON: I welcome our members to full membership in Upsilon Pi Epsilon. Epsilon places the closed book so that the light again falls on it, smooths the index ribbon, removes the pen, and takes a seat at the end of the table.
As the book is closed and contains within it the names of those who are the honored members of this society, so let our minds close upon and contain the truths, ideals, and aspirations we have heard. However, as the book may always be opened to receive the names of new worthy members, so let our minds always be receptive to new truths and greater understanding.
Members of Upsilon Pi Epsilon: We have completed the nth initiation ceremony of the UPE Chapter at … institution. It is our custom that each active member greet and welcome each new member before leaving.
The room lights are brightened and Pi and Epsilon begin the general welcome of the new members.