Greek Life Makes Comeback: More than half of Greek chapters reinstated

Greek members attended the Greek Town Hall on Thursday, Feb. 1, to learn about the future of Greek life on campus. Photo by Fabienne Fleurantin/Panther Press

Michelle Marchante/News Director

More than half of Greek chapters were reinstated on Thursday, Feb. 1, and will be allowed to resume normal activities, with the remaining chapters still on “pause” until they meet reinstatement criteria.

Of the 37 chapters, 32 were eligible for reinstatement, with five organizations currently suspended, but only 19 chapters submitted their reinstatement packet by the deadline, according to Anthony DeSantis, assistant vice president for Student Affairs at BBC.

Out of the 19 chapters, the Fraternity & Sorority Life Reinstatement Review Committee recommended 16 of those chapters for reinstatement, DeSantis said at the Greek Town Hall. Eligible chapters not reinstated will have another opportunity near the end of the month to present to the committee.

Greek members attended the Greek Town Hall on Thursday, Feb. 1, to learn about the future of Greek life on campus. Photo by Fabienne Fleurantin/Panther Press

The reinstatement decisions come a month after the University “paused” all Greek life to reevaluate and change the Greek culture on campus.

However, Tau Kappa Epsilon and Phi Gamma Delta (FIJI) will be suspended for two years, and FIJI will no longer be a recognized university organization, according to an email sent out to the University community on Monday, Feb. 5.

Phi Kappa Phi also faces possible suspension for hosting an unregistered party at its chapter house in December 2017 when it was still under interim suspension for a hazing investigation. But its suspension is still to be determined, according to the email.

TKE was placed on interim suspension last year for allegedly violating the University’s Student Code of Conduct, following the release of screenshots depicting nude photos of multiple women, pedophilia comments and references to drug use in the group’s private chat.

It and FIJI were placed on interim suspension in October for having underage drinking at a tailgate party, according to the email.

Beta Theta Pi (Beta) and Sigma Alpha Mu (Sammy)currently in interim suspension will have a “tailored reinstatement plan based on the findings from the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution,” the email reads.

Beta, Rosenberg said at the meeting, is being investigated for allegedly having underage drinking at an unregistered party and Sammy is being investigated for allegedly hosting a social event during the pause.

Reinstated chapters may resume normal activity, which includes recruitment, social events and philanthropy. However, all Greek chapters will have a “No Alcohol” ban until the end of the semester.

During the Greek Town Hall, President Mark B. Rosenberg and other administrators reminded the Greek community that in order for the positive “transformational” Greek culture shift to occur, the chapters need to work together with the university because “Greek life in this country is hanging by a thread,” according to Rosenberg.

During the town hall, Rosenberg listed 19 universities across the country that made national news for incidents surrounding Greek life. Four names on the list, not including FIU, were state universitiesFlorida State, West Florida, Florida Atlantic and University of North Florida.

Accountability, communication and transparency between chapters and university administrators was also discussed at the meeting.

Chapter presidents made it clear to him during fall meetings that administrators were not communicating information effectively with students, especially Greeks, said Rosenberg, and is something that will be improved.

DeSantis also spoke about the disconnect and misunderstandings between Greeks in their own chapters. He attended three chapter meetings this semester, he said, and only about 20 percent of students knew about the Greek pause. Additionally, chapters, he said, are misunderstanding culture change to be about their philanthropy but it’s for their internal community.

“[The University is] going to make a commitment to any chapter with 25 members or less or any chapter on academic probation,” DeSantis said. “We see you in critical status and we need to help you succeed.”

Critical status to the University means that the overseeing council needs to provide training and support in order to to teach members to hold each other accountable, how to have a “sustainable” recruitment model and how to correctly report an incident.

Additional reporting by Fabienne Fleurantin.

About the Author

Michelle Marchante
Michelle Marchante is the 2018-2019 Editor-in-Chief of PantherNOW. Majoring in broadcast journalism, she lives and breathes web, print, radio and TV news 24/7. You can connect with her on Twitter @TweetMichelleM

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