ineligible for position and STEPHEN GLASS InterFraternity Council president-elect Bruce Forman stepped down last month before he even stepped up. Forman's eligibility came into question last month when his fraternity, Tau Epsilon Phi, was suspended for hazing and alcohol violations making Forman an early alumnus. Forman and the presidents of IFC chapters agreed in December that Forman should not take office as IFC president. Instead, the organization will hold another election later this month. Current president Jim Rettew said last week that the IFC constitution, though vague, requires the president to be an active member of a recognized fraternity -- a requirement which TEP no longer fulfills. Forman called the December meeting when he learned the investigation into his fraternity might affect his position in the IFC. "When I was elected I had no idea this was going to happen," Forman said. "No one did. It was shocking to everyone considering what we did." Forman said this weekend he forfeited his position in "the best interests of the IFC." "It's the only thing we could have done, both ethically and constitutionally," College senior Rettew said. Wharton junior Forman stressed that he had called the meeting, dubbed by many the "constitutional convention," so the IFC could make an informed decison on who should be their next president. "It was my own intiative to call the meeting to elucidate the TEP situation and how that affected me as IFC president-elect," Forman said. "I felt a personal responsibility to my supporters and friends in the IFC to tell them what was going on." The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs and TEP's national office released a joint statement last week detailing a suspension of at least one semester and at least one year of alcohol-free social probation. The fraternity had been found collectively responsible for three hazing violations last semester. But Forman and Jonathan Seidel, executive director of TEP's national office, declined to specify the nature of the infractions. TEP President Jeremy Sokolic did not return phone messages left at his home yesterday. Rettew said the new elections will be held before the end of the month, adding that "once the gavel drops" at that meeting, his term as president will be complete. Had Forman waited until second semester to step down, vice president-elect Stuart Elkowitz would have ascended to the presidency under the IFC's constitution, Rettew said. Since Forman withdrew in December and the presidents subsequently agreed at the meeting to hold new elections, Rettew remains president. Wharton junior Elkowitz was unavailable for comment yesterday. Forman added his "integrity was on the line" to call the meeting and allow all the fraternity presidents to discuss the entire situation. He said all of the representatives at the December meeting discussed his fraternity's predicament thoroughly. "I think the issues surrounding the TEP situation go beyond how it affects me as IFC president," Forman said. "It affects the important issue of how we got into trouble and the substance of our accusations -- we discussed strategies to prevent this from happening again." Forman said he does not hold a grudge against the IFC, rather he hopes that the organization grows stronger from the experience. "I am pleased that the decision was held in the best possible manner and was made by the brightest and best leaders of the IFC," Forman said. "I hope to leave behind a legacy of renewed activism and confidence."Comments powered by Disqus
Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Pennsylvanian.