Global Zeta Connection: Michael Galanos


Forward by Jessie Ashton, Director of Chapter Support & Wellness; Article written by Michael Galanos

Since I started at Lambda Chi Alpha, I’ve been proud to discuss the Global Zeta. From Zooming with Brothers in New Zealand in preparation for General Assembly to Members I’ve met from all of our continents to watching Brothers travel abroad and wave the Lambda Chi flag, I’ve been proud of all the ways in which Lambda Chi Alpha is international. My new favorite Global Zeta story, however, came from an unexpected meeting for my parents in Fiji in Spring of 2023. They were on vacation and love talking about what I do with Lambda Chi Alpha. They shared my role and the work Lambda Chi Alpha is doing to reinvent fraternity.

My parents were surprised to hear that the folks they were speaking with were parents of a former Associate Member of Zeta-Psi at Arizona State University. They shared Michael’s story: he arrived at Arizona State eager to find belonging as an international student from Australia and joined Lambda Chi Alpha as an Associate Member. Unfortunately, he was sent back home due to COVID and never initiated.

The Office of Administration, led by John Posth, our Training Specialist for Kappas/Phis, worked to remedy that. We hope this story serves as a reminder that Lambda Chi Alpha is a Global Zeta and is so much more than four years. We hope it serves as a reminder that OOA is here to make every Brother feel valued and ensure he belongs. We hope it’s a reminder of perfect brotherly love and the power of Lambda Chi Alpha.

Originally from Sydney, Australia, I took the opportunity to study abroad at Arizona State University from Fall 2019 to Spring 2020 for my junior year of university (with plans to transfer to ASU permanently for my senior year). I was fortunate enough to join Lambda Chi Alpha in Spring 2020, where I was a proud Associate Member of the Zeta-Psi chapter at Arizona State.

I immediately felt as though I found a home at Lambda Chi Alpha. It was an honor to be associated with such an esteemed Chapter and to join a group of young men who shared the same values as myself. I quickly made several meaningful connections with my fellow Associates as well as many active Brothers in the Chapter. Every day of my Associate semester was exciting and brought on new challenges and opportunities. I was proud to be a part of something bigger than myself and looked forward to my future as a proud Lambda Chi Alpha.

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I was forced to leave the US and return home to Australia on about 48 hours’ notice in late March 2020. With uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and unsure of when I’d be able to return to the US, I had extensive discussions with the High Alpha and High Kappa on my future with the Chapter. I ultimately decided to continue the Associate process as long as possible with hopes of returning to the US for Initiation, as I wasn’t ready to give up on something that meant so much to me.

I continued to participate in the Chapter as much as possible virtually from my home in Sydney during the global COVID-19 lockdowns. Unfortunately, I had to watch from Australia as my class was initiated without me in the fall of 2020. With no knowledge of when I’d be able to return, it was not possible for me to participate in the Fraternity, as I was stuck outside the US and unable to return to ASU for my senior year.

Australia had some of the strictest COVID-19 lockdowns, and as a result, I was unable to return to the United States until December 2021, when I caught the first flight I could as soon as the Australian border finally reopened. I spent six weeks in Arizona, where I stayed with the High Beta at the time, who was a close friend of mine from my Associate class in Spring 2020. This was a great experience for me, as I got to reconnect and spend time with the Brothers I’d missed for so long but also got to meet the newer classes who had been initiated in my absence.

The Brothers all welcomed me back with open arms which was an honor, but also reminded me how much I wished I could have been initiated with them all.

A year later in December 2022, I returned to Arizona once again, where I spent five weeks staying with five current Brothers who were all in my Associate class. Once again, it was great to be able to see everyone again and spend time with my class before they graduated. They all made me feel welcomed and like a part of the Brotherhood, which is something I will always be thankful for.

I was thrilled when a chance encounter on my parents’ vacation to Fiji led to my story being passed on to the Office of Administration.

As a result, I have now been blessed with an opportunity to finally become initiated into Lambda Chi Alpha, meaning I can officially become a part of the Brotherhood that has meant so much to me for so long. I will be forever grateful for the opportunities that Lambda Chi Alpha has brought me and will proudly cherish my Membership for the rest of my life.

This is true proof of the “Global Zeta” of Lambda Chi Alpha, and I am increasingly proud to be a part of this international Brotherhood.

MICHAEL is a proud native of Sydney, Australia, who has a great passion for sports and an insatiable desire to learn and grow. From a young age, he immersed himself in a variety of sports and extracurricular activities, with a particular focus on soccer and public speaking/debating. Michael’s love for American football was sparked by his father, who instilled in him a deep appreciation for the game and a lifelong loyalty to the Dallas Cowboys.

After completing high school, Michael began his early career as an undergraduate auditor at Ernst & Young (EY), where he pursued his studies while gaining valuable work experience. Meanwhile, he excelled on the football field, securing a starting position as a wide receiver for the University of Sydney. Michael’s passion for the game and American culture inspired him to pursue further studies abroad, and he was fortunate enough to attend Arizona State University, his top choice for its excellent football program and warm climate, similar to what he was accustomed to back home.

Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Michael persevered and completed his studies with flying colors. Back in Australia, he continued to excel in his career, working as a Senior Associate at EY, earning the esteemed title of Chartered Accountant (Australian equivalent of CPA), and subsequently transitioning to a Business Development Manager role at the cutting-edge Australian fintech firm, Eftsure.

Michael’s diverse experiences and unwavering determination have shaped him into a highly motivated and adaptable individual, always striving for excellence in all aspects of life. Whether on the field or in the boardroom, he brings his unique perspective and unwavering work ethic to everything he does, earning the respect and admiration of colleagues and peers alike.