There will be more opportunities to join the Greek community this year.
The Interfraternity Council will welcome Delta Sigma Phi back to campus after the fraternity left Penn around 1960, and two new multicultural Greek organizations will also join the Greek community at Penn.
Two representatives from the DSP national office came to do a site visit at Penn last week. DSP could not be reached for comment.
It is unclear why DSP left in the first place, Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life Director Scott Reikofski said. “I can say that in the late 1950s/early 1960s, a lot of fraternities ended up closing down because not as many men were in college and those that were, many of them just weren’t joining fraternities,” Reikofski added.
A new fraternity can join Penn after a vote by the IFC. Because Penn now has many fraternities, the IFC is trying to limit the number of additional organizations coming to campus.
IFC President Jimmy Germi said, “Now we have around thirty fraternities, so it’s important to consider whether more will detract from the existing ones. If a new organization won’t fill a unique niche, then we need to focus on recruitment for the existing fraternities first.”
The IFC voted on the re-colonization of DSP at the end of last semester. National branches approach the IFC to start a chapter at the school because they want to increase recruitment, and they believe the chapter will fit in well with the community, which Germi noted is very focused on philanthropy.
Germi stressed the importance of the chapter finding its own place in the community. For example, an engineering fraternity considered colonizing at Penn a few semesters ago, but ultimately, the match didn’t seem right. Recently, Penn has seen one or two new IFC organizations attempt colonization on campus each year.
The Multicultural Greek Council will also welcome two new chapters this year.
Sigma Lambda Upsilon, also known as Senoritas Latinas Unidas, Inc. is a citywide sorority chapter, meaning members from nearby schools including Drexel, Temple and Bryn Mawr are all part of the same chapter. Citywide chapters have branches at each school, but are considered one body.
SLY came to Penn in the fall of 1989, when four Latina students reached out to the national branch because they felt that Penn had a need and demand for a branch. In spring 1990, the first class was initiated. The branch remained here until spring 2013, when all the members graduated.
“[SLY] is a standout example of participating in community service. They have had a lot of ongoing collaboration with La Casa [Latina],” Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life Program Coordinator Kenny Jones said.
Phi Beta Sigma, a historically black fraternity, will also make its return to campus. Another citywide chapter, PBS was chartered here at Penn, but has been inactive since spring 2013. Since the return of its sister organization, Zeta Phi Beta, last spring, PBS has made a strong effort to recolonize at Penn.
Three new MGC groups have made the return to Penn since August 2013. After the recolonization of PBS and SLY, there will be 14 MGC organizations at Penn.
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