House may go to Tri-Delt After being held on probation by its national office for three years, the Phi Kappa Sigma fraternity has lost its charter. All current brothers have been given early alumni status, and last year's class of 21 pledges will not be initiated. And the Delta Delta Delta sorority may move into Phi Kap's house at 3539 Locust Walk, making it the first sorority to be located on the Walk. Phi Kap's suspension, which took place on June 10th, closes the Alpha chapter of the fraternity, the founding chapter which was originally established in 1850. According to Executive Vice President of the national office Alan Preston, the charter was suspended because the chapter didn't meet certain standards of operation. Standards set forth by the fraternity's national office include "responsible risk management practices, achieving certain scholastic goals, participating in community and University service projects, and maintaining safe and desirable living facilities," according to a statement issued by the national office. Preston would not comment on what specific standards were not met by the University chapter, but Phi Kap national Executive Board member Ghery Pettit said the fraternity's standards have always been high. "We have high standards," he said. "The bottom line is that we're going to maintain our standards even if it means an embarrassment to the local chapter." Phi Kap Vice President and College senior Woody Paik said this is not the first time the national office has complained about the chapter's performance. "They haven't been happy with our chapter for a number of years," Paik said. "There was a disparity between what we thought they wanted us to do and what they did want." Pettit said that many chapters which are suspended by their national offices often return to campus after three years. He added that the national office intends to "re-establish the chapter when conditions are better." According to Greek Alumni Council Chairperson Andrea Dobin and Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs Director Tricia Phaup, the fraternity was in good standing with the Interfraternity Council and was not on probation with the University. "It was a completely internal matter," Dobin said. "As far as the University knew at the time of suspension, there was nothing identifiable as the cause." The fate of Phi Kap's house is still being discussed. According to the national office, the local alumni association that owns the chapter house, Alpha Inc., intends to lease it to a University sorority for an indefinite period. Several sources have identified Tri-Delt as the top candidate for the lease, and said that the "indefinite period" will probably be three years. "As I understand it, our house corporation was approached by their house corporation about leasing the house," said Tri-Delt President and College senior Melissa London. "We should know in the next couple of weeks [if a lease will be signed]." If Tri-Delt does indeed accept the offer, London said, the sorority would also maintain its Spruce Street house since it has already renewed its lease for the next academic year. Dobin said that maintaining two houses is both rare and difficult, but that Tri-Delt is "one of the strongest chapters on campus" and could possibly manage it. The suspension and loss of the house will leave 33 brothers without a place to live in the fall, Paik said. He added that the 21 men who pledged the fraternity but were never initiated will have the option of pledging another fraternity when they return to school. IFC President and College senior Hayden Horowitz and Phi Kap President and College junior Craig Rutenberg were unavailable for comment.Comments powered by Disqus
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