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History

AGO History

Alpha Gamma Omega, the Christ-centered fraternity, began at UCLA in 1927 and spent the rest of the century traveling across town to the University of Southern California. The timing was right, for at USC in 1999 there were many young men desiring an alternative to the fraternities already there, one that would encourage them in their faith and not challenge them.

It was Jonathan Nungester who took the lead in establishing a Christian fraternity on the USC campus. During a summer project with Campus Crusade for Christ, he met some members of ΑΓΩ's San Luis Obispo chapter and learned a lot about their fraternity. He returned to school for his sophomore year and started gauging the interest guys might have in starting a similar one.

One man he shared his vision with was junior Aaron Pierce, and together they tackled the decision of whether to start an independent fraternity or a new chapter of an existing one. Jonathan kept in contact with ΑΓΩ national officers and men of the San Luis Obispo chapter, and that winter it was decided to bring Alpha Gamma Omega to USC.

On January 22, 2000, about 20 guys attended an informational meeting held by Jim Johnson, ΑΓΩ's Vice President of Collegiate Chapters. Some were interested in founding a fraternity, others were simply excited about an opportunity for Christian ministry at USC.

On January 31, eleven of those men, along with advisors Kevin Newgren and Zachary Earl, gathered again in Jon Nungester's dorm room for what would be the first meeting of the new ΑΓΩ colony.

During the next semester they began the process of organizing and establishing a chapter. Early on they had successes such as securing a room with kitchen facilities in the University Religious Center to hold Monday Night Dinners and meetings. They also faced challenges such as gaining university recognition. The men held their first elections, had a great colony retreat, and put on their first exchange with a sorority.

The colonization process continued in the fall of 2000, the landmark event being the colony's first rush, which produced its first set of pledges, proving that the men could successfully attract new members and spread the vision of ΑΓΩ. The original members and the new ones all went through the pledge program during the fall. At the same time they organized various social events and established by-laws and traditions.

By the end of the semester pledgeship was over, and on February 2 sixteen men were initiated as active members of Alpha Gamma Omega and as the founders of the Pi chapter, which was chartered on February 3, 2001.

During the next few semesters many landmark events took place. That spring, the chapter had its first elections, put together several ministry events, and initiated the members of the Alpha Pledge Class. In the fall, the men of the chapter made Deliveries on the Row a weekly tradition and continued to expand their social program. They participated in their first philanthropy, a football tournament, and their intramural football team also won the league championship.

The highlight of spring 2002 was ΑΓΩ's victory in Songfest, an annual performance competition they had entered for the first time. The women of Alpha Chi Omega were their partners, a tradition which continues today. On a sadder note, Kevin Newgren moved away from Los Angeles that semester and had to retire as chapter advisor.

That fall, with their social and ministerial facets becoming well established, the Pi chapter turned its attention to developing the leadership potential of its members. President David Torstenson, who that year was named "Mr. USC," developed the Chapter Positions List, giving every man a chance to contribute to the growth of Alpha Gamma Omega.

The spring of 2003 was noteworthy because of ΑΓΩ's participation in a large number of philanthropies and exchanges and because of the development of a Greek ministry program. It was also this semester that most of the Pi chapter's remaining founders graduated from USC, which was both celebrated and mourned. The foundation they built for the chapter and the traditions they began ensure that Alpha Gamma Omega will continue to thrive at USC as an organization committed to scholastics, leadership, character development, outreach, and above all to the glory of God.

The spring of 2003 was noteworthy because of ΑΓΩ's participation in a large number of philanthropies and exchanges and because of the development of a Greek ministry program. It was also this semester that most of the Pi chapter's remaining founders graduated from USC, which was both celebrated and mourned. The foundation they built for the chapter and the traditions they began ensure that Alpha Gamma Omega will continue to thrive at USC as an organization committed to scholastics, leadership, character development, outreach, and above all to the glory of God.

For a detailed history of the National Alpha Gamma Omega Fraternity, click here.

History of Water on the Row

Alpha Gamma Omega's weekly event on the row handing out water to anyone who wants/needs it. Kurt Johnson and Will Liu started this back in 2003.(more to come). It takes place two or three Thursdays a month, generally from 12:00-2:00. If it gets cold, we pull out a heat lamp to provide warmth to passerbys. During the Fall of 2007, Teddy James instituted Wafers on the Row, whereby he (and subsequently other AGO brothers) passed out delicious vanilla wafers alongside the water. They proved to be a massive hit.

History of AGO Philanthropy

AGO Arcade was Alpha Gamma Omega's original annual philanthropy benefiting Invisible Children.

In 2011 AGO Arcade was replaced by AGO Recess which benefits the Union Rescue Mission.