Brotherhood of ninjas on campus

A new student group has slipped onto campus and is enlisting individuals for instruction in the Japanese art of Ninjitsu.

The Brotherhood, a martial arts organization that just emerged on campus this semester, trains Northern Kentucky University students in the style of Ninjitsu, the namesake of the infamous ninjas.

“Ninjitsu is just enhanced martial arts,” said Evva Roberson, founder and sensei of the group. “You have to have experience in martial arts already.”

The Japanese fighting style was devised and sharpened by the notorious ninjas, a stealthy class known as assassins for hire in feudal Japan. Typically, however, they often infiltrated enemy fortresses as double-agents or covertly ambushed enemy armies.

Though the sly spies vanished long ago, their combat techniques have survived and been brought to NKU by Roberson, who has five years experience in martial arts. She said she taught herself ninjitsu, and wanted to open the style up to the campus community.

After being chartered last April, it has now become an official group and practices in the Multi-Purpose room in the Albright Health Center.

More than a year in the making, naming The Brotherhood alone proved a difficult battle.

“It’s been a long process,” Roberson said. “It went through so many trial and errors, back and forth through so many names.”

Eventually, she said she’d had it with trying to find the perfect name to fit the sleek organization. Instead, Roberson chose The Brotherhood, as it reflects “family, togetherness,” a key value of the group.

Those who just beat Ninja Gaiden on the Master Ninja level should hold off before they snatch their shurikens. The Brotherhood requires its members to have some previous experience in martial arts, such as Akito, Tae Kwon Do, Kung Fu or Judo.

“We integrate all the different types of martial arts,” she said. “Not tae bo or kickboxing.”

However, a vast array of styles exist across Asia, she said, and they share similar underlying skills. A green belt in Tae Kwon Do is about the amount of experience necessary, but the rank itself is not.

“One of the members I recruited this week, he has more knowledge than he lets on,” she said. “I was surprised. A white belt