Greek reaction to Hackney statement mixed Greek reaction to the president's announcement about the future of the Psi Upsilon house split along gender lines yesterday as fraternities criticized and sororities lauded the move. President Sheldon Hackney announced Friday night that next semester a non-fraternity group of students will be housed in the Castle, located at 36th Street and Locust Walk. The move marks the administration's first step to diversify the Walk. Several fraternity members said that while they support bringing a more diverse student population to residences on the Walk, they were dismayed by the announcement which eliminated all fraternities from the running for the Castle house. Kappa Alpha Psi President Lerone Sidberry, a Wharton senior, said that Hackney's plans to diversify the Walk unfairly discriminates against black fraternities. "I'd like to see the walk diversified, be it a sorority, or a Latino organization, or something other than a white fraternity on the Walk," Sidberry said. "By [Hackney] excluding all fraternities from the Castle, he seems to have killed the hopes for a black fraternity on Locust Walk." But sorority members, who are still in the running to live in the facility, said they were excited by the president's statement. And Chi Omega President Kelly Christie said last night that her group would love to move in. "This vacancy affords the opportunity for the University to provide a safe and viable housing option for women at the center of campus," said Christie, a College senior. "As a diverse group of women, Chi Omega would be pleased to begin the trend of diversifying the Walk." Interfraternity Council President Bret Kinsella said last night that while the IFC fully supports diversifying the Walk, he is disappointed that Hackney has denied fraternities a chance to live in the Castle. "I see it as unfortunate that Dr. Hackney seems to have categorically excluded fraternities from the opportunity to reside in the Castle," Kinsella said. Several fraternity members said they hope moves to diversify the Walk will not include any relocations of current Locust Walk fraternities. Pi Lambda Phi house manager Daryl Michalak said he does not think any current Walk fraternities should be punished in the efforts to diversify residents of the area. "I don't believe we should randomly kick off fraternities," he said. "It's an accident that Locust Walk was the center of campus." Theta Xi member Jason Soslow, a College senior, said that he does not object to a non-fraternity group moving into the Castle. But he said he sees the administration's interest in diversifying the Walk as an image-boosting campaign. "The administration has funny ideas about the center of campus and its hopes for it," Soslow said. "Over the past 15 years, the University has spent a lot of money to increase ratings in certain polls, and a major goal is to eliminate negative press." Several fraternity and sorority members expressed support for Hackney's statement that he would consider relocating office space to make it possible for a large concentration of students to live on the Walk. Beta Theta Pi brother David Benditt, a College sophomore, said clearing out offices for student housing would be an "easy solution" to diversifying the Walk. But he said he does not think most people are irritated by the present make-up of Locust Walk. "My personal belief is that the president is feeling a lot of pressure [to deny fraternities the opportunity to live in the Castle]," Benditt said. "Personally, it's not irking me that Locust Walk is not diverse."Comments powered by Disqus
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