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SAE loses appeal, four Greek orgs under investigation

Published: Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Updated: Thursday, November 15, 2012 07:11

While USF’s chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE), a national men’s fraternity, was denied its appeal of suspension charges received a month ago, four other Greek organizations are also under investigation, with little information released from university officials or organization members.

USF chapters of Zeta Tau Alpha (ZTA), a women’s fraternity; Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT), a men’s fraternity; Sigma Nu, a men’s fraternity; and Phi Delta Theta, a men’s fraternity, are all under investigations based on possible violations of university or organization policy, Patrick Romero-Aldaz, director of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, said in an email statement to The Oracle.

Details of the current investigations could not be released, Romero-Aldaz said, but SAE was suspended for
violating three university policies outlined in the Standards for Student Organization Conduct including harassment, hazing and a failure to adhere to organization, local and national policies.

“As per (the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life’s) practice, at the current time I am unable to comment on the situation in that there is an ongoing investigation,” Romero-Aldaz said in response to requests for further details surrounding these investigations.

The incident AE was charged for included “the alleged use of exercise-type activities and verbal degradation of potential members as a means of testing knowledge about the chapter members,  organization information, etc.,” university spokeswoman Lara Wade-Martinez said in an email to The Oracle.

Danielle McDonald, interim dean of students, said the Office of Fraternity Life has dealt with multiple alcohol-related issues and “struggling with risk management” this semester.

“The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life has had some challenges this semester,” she said.

McDonald supervises the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, which directly oversees the Greek organizations on campus. The dean of students also typically serves as the appellate officer for appeals through the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, but during the interim period, Dee Siscoe, interim vice president of Student Affairs, has handled appeals made by groups or organizations. McDonald said the university could not directly comment on ongoing investigations.

Renee Svec, director of communications and marketing for Student Affairs, said in an email to The Oracle that when SAE appealed the charges “the appellate officer upheld the original findings of organization responsibility,” as “the chapter could not absolve itself of responsibility for the charges, but the original sanctions were reduced to a two-year loss of recognition based on multiple factors.

SAE is working with The Department of Housing and Residential Education to determine what will happen to the house.

Svec said “SAE is working in collaboration with Housing and Residential Education to determine next steps with regard to the SAE house and its residents.”

The Department of Housing and Residential Education declined to comment further, and directed questions to University Communications and Marketing.

Of the 14 organizations that occupy Greek Village, three other than SAE now have the possibility of being removed, as ZTA, ZBT and Sigma Nu all occupy houses on campus. Phi Delta Theta has an off-campus house on 42nd Street.

The Executive Board members of USF’s Interfraternity Council could not be reached for comment via the email addresses posted on its Facebook page.

EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that SAE will be removed from its Greek Village house and will be eligible to reapply for recognition in 2014. This story has been updated to state instead that SAE will be working with the Department of Housing and Residential Education to determine its future.

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Mon Nov 26 2012 20:57
The last comments "inside looking out" describes these spoiled riod heads and bimbos elitist additudes perfectly.
Mon Nov 26 2012 12:57
These comments from non-greek students are just another example of one of my favorite quotes.. "From the outside looking in, you can never understand it. From the inside looking out, you can never explain it."

I had the same feelings as some of them before joining Greek, but was completely proved wrong. I love my organization and don't need to waste my time explaining it to any of you.

Also, in response to the "Lilly white Greek Village comment," race and council affiliation has nothing to do with what organizations occupy houses. USF Housing handles that. When houses are open, the bidding process is based on what organizations come forward with the financial stability and support to pay for the house. Learn the facts.

Sun Nov 25 2012 01:22
Is there a limit on the amount of blond bimbos and jersey shore look alike guys being allowed in the "village".
Fri Nov 23 2012 21:34
Looks like some of you didn't get bids.
Wed Nov 21 2012 21:33
I noticed that there are no African American houses over in the Lilly white Greek village.
USF Greek
Tue Nov 20 2012 23:42
How do you ignore the staggering facts infront of you and say greek life is nothing but an excuse to get smashed?
1. Greek's GPA's are higher than USF's all male/female average. A 2.75 or below in my fraternity put you on academic probation. Sure - not a high GPA, but what about all the kids who populate the shitty campus living apartments around USF who rock 2.0s and do nothing but drink every night and contribute nothing to this university?

2. Philanthropy - How many non greek students show up for events like Stampede of Service at 7am on a Saturday ? How many hundreds of thousands of dollars do the kids in apartment 23A at Campus Lodge raise for local/national charities?

3. Campus involvement: Look at the pathetic amount of USF students who vote in Student Elections - 40k kids and maybe what, 2k non greeks can even spare 2 minutes to vote ?

4. What you are doing is called stereotyping. You really want to do that ? Lets see how it looks going the other way:

1. Like I said earlier, the average all male gpa of random USF students is noticeably lower than those of Fraternities.
2. Out of the 35k+ non greek students, how many do you think actually do anything in the way of philanthropy? Again we are stereotyping so I think the answer would be an embarrassingly low amount, probably 0.
3. Campus involvement - Again, 0. If we are stereotyping here. The average usf student might attend a few football games, definitely does not vote or participate in any student body decisions, and definitely does not attend much of anything that allows USF to be something more than just a commuter school.

But you have fun with your ignorant stereotyping and fantasy world and keep lobbing jealous complaints about how rich greeks are and how they get to park on the grass.

Mon Nov 19 2012 18:23
I have had the unfortunate opportunity to be invited as a new student to numerous Greek house parties that have turned into nothing but a way for under 21year olds to get smashed drunk. It's always excuses from these people and someone needs to do something about their lack of respect they clearly have to everyone else here. Oh and the parking issue dos need to be address. I can get a ticket for having my wheel touching a line in a parking spot but these people drive on their lawns parking at their building doors and driving out on roadways from the sidewalks and no one cares.
Mon Nov 19 2012 17:46
There are certain things which are not conducive of an academic environment, and Greek Life remains a shining example. What bewilders me is how universities claim to be beacons of intellect when they sponsor "high school" traditions and behaviors, such as homecoming courts, and organizational fronts in the form of sororities and fraternities disguised as legitimate institutions of character. In the real world, "there are no homecoming queens," and all of this talk about networking and community involvement ("philanthropies") justifying Greek Life can be alternatively substituted by VOLUNTEERING. If anything, Greek Life exists almost exclusively as judgmental social clubs that raise destructive and self-conceited neanderthals who do nothing more than perpetuate stereotypes, bringing focus away from personal qualities and rather towards physical attributes. A prime example of this is how I've been told Greeks "rank" each other according to who they call "top-tier." While many might consider this a measure of, let's say, GPA averages, accrued philanthropic donations/involvement, etc., that's not the case. Rankings that matter, apparently, are rated according to subjective qualities that involve "beauty, desirability, etc." Who's hotter, or who fulfills their dominative stereotype the best wins.

In my experience, I've observed the most shallow of persons that wear Greek letters, and in groups they are a formidable stupidity. Individuality is beaten away through covert hazing, and pledges are promised a silver lining as long as they contribute significant funds into their organization's party accounts. I can confidently say that a large part of a university's detraction away from its academic reason is due greatly in fault to their associations with socially-crippling "Greek Life" organizations. Truly, these clubs should all be investigated for potential criminal activity, or at least banned from university campuses everywhere.

AOII - Janelle
Thu Nov 15 2012 22:11
First of all, I'd just like to point out that a lot those staggering drunks are on the "party buses" that drop off and pick people up in Ybor. Most of them aren't even affiliated with Greek life and just annoy the people who actually live there.

Anyways, I feel like I need to post on this story because I think it's really unfair that Greeks constantly get negative publicity. I understand that there are a lot of misconceptions and that some of them are based on things that have actually happened. It doesn't mean we're all spoiled rich kids who buy our friendships.

I paid dues to be part of an organization. My dues helped fund philanthropies, and bettered my education and my social skills.
I learned the value of giving my time to help my community.
I gained valuable life skills, like how to interview and interact with people who are different from me. I also have thousands of connections all over the country.
I share an awesome ritual with my best friends.
And I know now that building people up and watching them better themselves feels a lot better than breaking them down.

Be more open-minded.

Wed Nov 14 2012 13:36
This is a good start. Nothing good comes from Greek Village. There are cars parked on the grass that are ignored by Parking Services. The parade of intoxicated underage students staggering of of there on the weekends and after the buses drop them off is disgusting.

All of Greek village should be leveled and residential building should be built for all students not just spoiled rich kids who have to buy their friendships into a crazed frat house

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