The University of Iowa on Thursday removed Delta Chi, Sigma Nu, and Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s status as registered student organizations following the UI’s removal of Kappa Sigma’s status on Wednesday.
“The University of Iowa is very proud of the fraternity and sorority system, but we have high expectations,” said Melissa Shivers, UI vice president for Student Life and interim chief diversity officer, in a press conference. “We’re responsible for students’ health, safety, and well-being, and that’s something we will not compromise.”
This decision follows a two-month UI investigation that found multiple violations of UI policy and the Fraternity/Sorority Life moratorium, including tailgates.
These fraternities will not be a recognized fraternity or a registered student organization on campus, the release said. Disciplinary action for individual students could occur if this decision is not followed.
The UI chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon previously closed on campus in 2012 after the chapter was found responsible for hazing and failing to follow Sigma Alpha Epsilon policies. The Sigma Alpha Epsilon colony came back to campus in the fall of 2016.
Kappa Sigma International Fraternity also voted to revoke the UI chapter’s charter on Wednesday for violating fraternity and UI policies on hazing and alcohol.
Shivers said the details of Kappa Sigma’s hazing cannot be released at this time.
“Parents and families send their loved ones to the UI with the expectation that their safety, health, and well-being will be the top priority,” UI President Bruce Harreld said in a press release. “These decisions honor that expectation.”
Fraternity houses on campus are owned and operated by a private owner or housing corporation connected to a fraternity, Shivers said. The UI does not decide what happens to the current residents now that these chapters will not be recognized on campus.
While Shivers said she regrets the timing of this information fell on finals week, it comes at a time where students can find alternative housing over winter break should it be decided they cannot live in the houses.
Investigations into other fraternities that were temporarily suspended have now ended. The suspensions began on Nov. 2. Shivers said the suspension provided an opportunity to look into all allegations brought the the university’s attention.
These fraternities have been placed on probation: Acacia, Beta Theta Pi, Pi Kappa Alpha, Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Phi Epsilon, and Sigma Pi. Probations will be in place until the fall of 2019.
Phi Delta Theta were placed on deferred suspension. This suspension will be in place until fall of 2020.
No evidence was found to find Phi Kappa Psi and Sigma Chi responsible of any allegations.
Besides Kappa Sigma, all fraternities were informed of their status throughout the day Thursday.
Shivers said any student who wishes to may appeal any of these initial decisions made at this time by filing a written notice of appeal to the UI Dean of Students Office. This process may not be completely over, Shivers said, as the deadline to appeal is Jan. 11.
Fraternities could potentially be reinstated on campus after a minimum of four years off campus, she said.
A moratorium on alcohol events began in May 2017 following the death of UI student Kamil Jackowski in April 2017. This past spring, the UI began a pilot program to allow chapters in good standing to host up to three registered social events a semester.
The Fraternity/Sorority Life 2020 Strategic Plan work group hopes to give recommendations to chapters about improving greek culture on campus by the end of the year.
Shivers said she hopes these decisions will not influence future UI students joining greek life on campus.
“The important focus on health and safety will continue,” Shivers said. “This is not an ideal place to be. … When fraternity and sorority life is done well, it can be exceptional.”
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