The Delta Delta Delta and Sigma Delta Tau sororities, as well as the Tau Epsilon Phi and Zeta Beta Tau fraternities, were found collectively responsible for violating University policy, after over a month of investigations conducted by the Office of Student Conduct.
Disciplinary considerations regarding these chapters will be sorted out by the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs in the upcoming weeks, according to OFSA Director Scott Reikofski.
Reikofski said that once decisions are made regarding the fates of the remaining four chapters, the violations and punishments of each will be made public, but "these processes will probably not be completed until the end of the academic year."
The members of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority and the Beta Theta Pi fraternity were found not collectively responsible for violating University policy.
"Two of the chapters that had been investigated were found to not be collectively responsible for violations of any University policies," Reikofski said in an e-mail statement. "With these results, no formal disciplinary action will be taken with these chapters."
The investigations began immediately before spring break, when it was alleged that six Greek chapters -- or persons affiliated with them -- had violated various University policies.
For Sigma Delta Tau, already on probation for violating University alcohol and anti-hazing policies during its new-member education program last year, a finding of collective responsibility by the OSC represents a second "strike" in two years.
"We will know more by the end of the week," SDT President Gabrielle Arnay said, unable to provide further comment.
But a source close to SDT said, "We have no answers yet. The future of SDT is still up in the air."
The source added that representatives from SDT's national headquarters will arrive on campus by the end of the week to speak with the sisters and help OFSA determine what should be done with the chapter.
"The University has basically a three-strikes-and-you're-out policy, and this would be our second strike, so I think it's safe to say that we won't get kicked off campus," the source said.
In his statement, Reikofski indicated that Alpha Chi Omega had been investigated for "planning a new-member activity that would have violated the alcohol and drug policy, anti-hazing policy, policy for Recognition of Undergraduate Social Fraternities and Sororities and Code of Student Conduct."
Beta Theta Pi had been investigated for allegedly violating these same policies, with the exception of the alcohol and drug policy.
Reikofski would not comment on the policies violated by the four other Greek chapters.
While Alpha Chi Omega and Beta Theta Pi were not found collectively responsible, Reikofski noted that proactive educational programming and intervention work will take place, led by OFSA and alumni advisers of these chapters. The purpose of these initiatives is "to address attitudes and lack of understanding of policies and procedures that may be at the root of individual misbehavior."
"Disciplinary measures may be pursued for individuals involved," Reikofski added, suggesting that while Alpha Chi Omega and Beta Theta Pi have not been found collectively responsible, individuals connected with these groups have not escaped punishment.
"We are really pleased with the outcome of the investigation," Alpha Chi Omega President Vivian Rotter said. "We are taking precautions such that a misunderstanding of this type never occurs again."
Rotter indicated that the investigation must serve as an educational experience.
"The only outcome is really positive -- more community service and more educational programming. We're trying to focus on positive influence instead of negative punishment," Rotter said.
Beta Theta Pi spokesman and Wharton junior Constantine Tujios said that the fraternity is relieved that the ordeal is over.
Delta Delta Delta President Stephanie Yarcia could not comment on the situation facing her sorority, and presidents of the other chapters did not return phone calls.
Panhellenic Council President Elizabeth Kimmelman said she was pleased that Alpha Chi Omega's name has been cleared, and she is already looking to make changes in the Greek system for next year.
"I trust Alpha Chi and Vivian [Rotter] to work on any internal issues that remain," Kimmelman said. "I have full confidence that they will effectively deal with that situation."
Kimmelman would not comment on the other investigations "until final decisions are made."
Still, she spoke optimistically about changes that can be implemented as soon as next semester.
"We're bringing our national Panhellenic program to campus in the fall," Kimmelman said.
In a unanimous vote, the sorority presidents agreed to apply for the program that will bring national representatives to Penn who will "work with every single chapter, regardless of whether they had an investigation this semester."
"The goal of this program is to open up dialogue between houses and reach a consensus about what should be done to change the environment here," Kimmelman said. "We're going to talk a lot about what the problems are."
A representative from the national office of Delta Delta Delta indicated that her office has been in constant communication with OFSA, but could not provide further information.
Representatives from the national offices of SDT, TEP and ZBT did not return phone calls.Comments powered by Disqus
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