Phi Sigma Alpha known as La Sigma, is a Puerto Rican fraternity established as the Sigma Delta Alpha Fraternity on October 22, 1928, at the University of Puerto Rico by 12 students and a professor. Phi Sigma Alpha can trace its roots back to 1898 to the Union Hispano Americana, as well as to the first Greek letter Hispanic-oriented fraternity, Sigma Iota, established in 1912. By 1998 there were over 4,376 members. Phi Sigma Alpha traces its origins to a number of organizations including Phi Lambda Alpha. Phi Lambda Alpha fraternity was founded at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1919; the fraternity was the result of a merger of three societies: Pi Delta Phi Fraternity at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, founded in 1916. This last one was the first Latin-American student society formed in the USA. After ΦΛΑ was organized, other societies joined it: the "Club Latino-Americano", founded in 1919 at Colorado School of Mines. Sigma Iota fraternity was founded in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on March 2, 1912 known as the Sociedad Hispano Americana, founded in the University of Louisiana in 1904.
Between 1912 and 1925, Sigma Iota expanded in the United States, South America, Europe. As a result of this, Sigma Iota became the first international Latin American-based fraternity. Sigma Iota and Phi Lambda Alpha joined and became Phi Iota Alpha in 1931. In 1932, Phi Iota Alpha reorganized and formed the Union Latino Americana as its overall governing body, dividing their member fraternities in Latin America into zones according to the country they represented. Sigma Delta Alpha fraternity was established by 12 students and a professor on October 22, 1928, at the University of Puerto Rico at the Glorieta Fabián; the founding members included Santos P. Amadeo, Juan Figueroa, Fernando Jiménez, Hugo D. Storer, Joaquin Velilla, Victor M. Sánchez, Adalberto Carrasquillo, Diego Guerrero Noble, Samuel L. Rodríguez, José Laracuente, Charles H. Juliá, Gilberto del Valle and Gilberto Alemar; the name Kappa Delta Alpha was considered but it was changed to Sigma Delta Alpha. By December 5, 1928, they established their Chapter House where they began celebrating their meetings.
For many years, Sigma Delta Alpha enjoyed a certain amount of notoriety not enjoyed by other student organizations at the University. Its membership included four of the most important student leadership positions at the university: the Yearbook editor, the senior class president, the Athletic Society president, the ROTC Battalion Commander; every activity sponsored by the school administration was consulted with the Sigma Delta Alpha chapter president at the University in Río Piedras. In 1929, the Beta Chapter at the Colegio de Mayagüez was established. Phi Sigma Alpha had its first reorganization with the merger between the Alpha Boriquen Militant chapter of Phi Iota Alpha and Sigma Delta Alpha of the University of Puerto Rico in 1934; the Puerto Rican zone came to be when the Alpha Boriquen Militant Chapter was founded in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on March 4, 1934, by former members of Phi Iota Alpha. Under the conditions stated above, a movement came about to unite Sigma Delta Alpha with the Alpha Boriquen Militant Chapter of Phi Iota Alpha.
It was not an easy task since many of the Sigma Delta Alpha members did not want the change or to alter their history. But the decision was made and thus the Phi Sigma Alpha Zone of the Union Latino Americana came to be. A "Zone Directive" was created and a constitution was drafted, since there was no central body to control the fraternity. By 1937, the ULA had several well-established and functional zones including: ΦΙΑ - Phi Iota Alpha in the United States ΦΚΑ - Phi Kappa Alpha in Cuba ΦΣΑ - Phi Sigma Alpha in Puerto Rico ΦΤΑ - Phi Tau Alpha in MexicoULA held its last Convention on January 7–8, 1938. Delegates from the United States and the Puerto Rico zones were present. At the Convention, agreement could not be reached over the ideals of the fraternity. After the convention, each zone considered the matter independently; the USA zone decided that the ideals of the ULA ought to be Pan-Americanism and led its members towards a position of pro-independence as it related to Puerto Rico, while the Cuban zone did not reach a decision on their own and decide to go along with the ideals conceptualized by the USA zone.
The Puerto Rico zone rejected this decision because it considered the introduction of political issues to be detrimental to the fraternity. Thus on September 25, 1938, the Phi Sigma Alpha Zone withdrew from the Union Latino Americana; the ULA dissolved shortly after. Like the members of the Sigma, a majority of the members of the Chapter of Phi Iota Alpha of the University of Louisiana, disillusioned with character given to their brotherhood, withdrew from the Fraternity and, in April, 1939, found
Matthias Yap Zhe Yao is a Singaporean Powerlifter. He is an Asian Champion and holds several national records under the International Powerlifting Federation and is a self-funded athlete, coached under CoachbyMARC, founded by his elder brother, Marcus Yap, he made his first international competition debut at the 2017 Asian Classic Powerlifting Championships held in Kerala, India where he won a Silver Medal. He competed in the 2018 Asian Classic Powerlifting Championships held in Ulaanbaatar and won his first Gold Medal, he was unsuccessful. He is the current National record Holder for both the Squat & Deadlift in the Under 74 kg Sub-Junior Category. Matthias Yap was raised in Singapore. Coached by his eldest brother, Marcus Yap, he started competing in national competitions in 2015 at the age of 15 and made his debut on the International platform in 2017, winning the Silver medal in the Asian Classic Championships held in Kerala, India, he proceeded to the 2018 Asian Championships held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia to become the Asian Champion.
He has 2 older brothers and Matthew, who compete for Powerlifting Singapore and are multiple Asian Champions and World record holders. Yap handles media relations and finance for CoachbyMARC, a coaching company that specialises in Powerlifting and Strength & Conditioning founded by his brother Marcus Yap. Asian Classic Powerlifting Championships 2017 Kerala India, Silver in the Squat, Bronze in the Bench, Silver in the Deadlift, Silver in the Total/Overall Singapore Powerlifting Invitational 2018 - Champion, National record in the Squat and Deadlift. Asian Classic Powerlifting Championships 2018 Ulaanbaatar Mongolia, Gold in the Squat, Gold in the Bench, Gold in the Deadlift, Gold in the Total/Overall