New fraternity could come to campus

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New fraternity could come to campus

Alex Brennan, Staff Writer

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A new fraternity could make its way on campus in the foreseeable future.

The fraternity community, which is a student-led body acting as an interfraternity council at the university, voted in November to bring another fraternity on campus in the future.

Jacob Dicus, program coordinator for Fraternity and Sorority Life, wrote in an email to The Shield the student-led expansion committee will “consist of undergraduates that are in USI’s current fraternities, alumni/advisors of the organizations, as well as university staff members who work with student organizations on campus.”

The process for choosing a new fraternity is not a simple one, according to Dicus. The expansion committee will have to request information from nationally recognized groups that have expressed interest in becoming a new group on campus.

Dicus said that the committee will invite a number of ‘finalists’ to hold an on-campus presentation to the campus community about their organization and what they can bring to the university. 

“The information we will be asking from potential groups will include, but is not limited to, details pertaining to the organization’s general information, new member/member development, chapter advisement and support, colonization process, and risk management policies and expectations of the inter/national organization,” he wrote. 

There is no specific fraternity that the student-led council is asking to join the university. 

“We have no specific group or start date in mind at this stage as we want to do what is best for USI and its students,” Dicus wrote.

Fraternity and Sorority Life on campus, as described their link on the university’s home page, is “designed to help students make the most of their time on campus, and help them to develop into responsible, social, and contributing members of our society.” 

It wasn’t mentioned whether or not they would receive an apartment in the McDonald East area, where the majority of Fraternity and Sorority students live on campus. 

Dicus did provide more information on current fraternities on campus and wrote that “two fraternities on campus (Lambda Chi Alpha and Sigma Tau Gamma) have ‘half houses’ in the apartment complexes currently. Each ‘half house’ holds 14 students. So I would estimate that currently, about 14.5% live on campus fraternity wise.” 

The current rosters show members for fraternities at 193 members, but groups will recruit new members throughout this semester.

“USI does not recognize any off-campus housing for any student organization,” Dicus wrote. “Just like with any student organization, some properties may house ‘x’ amount of members living there but there is nothing officially recognized by a National organization or USI currently.”

Director of Housing and Residence Life Amy Price said students living in fraternity housing, as well as sorority housing, are no different than anyone else living on campus. 

“They would pay the fee, just like you would, only they would be living in McDonald East with their organization,” Price said.

She also explained how long it would take for a fraternity or sorority to gain their letters on top of their building.

“They would have to have a full house for a full year before the university would pay for their letters.” Price said.

She also said that sometimes fraternities struggle to gain those letters due to not enough people living in the house.

She said that fraternities are just like any other student organization, and she wants to see them to succeed on campus.

Price said at this time, there is possibly a fraternity who, after a long while of struggling to keep their numbers up, may be receiving their letters this upcoming summer. She did not share the name of the fraternity but said she was “keeping her thoughts positive” for the fraternity.

Hairo Rivas, a sophomore at USI, said that Greek life has been a huge part of his college career and that it helped him “find and help brothers that [he] never had.” 

Rivas said that not only does Greek life provide leadership opportunities, but his fraternity, Sigma Tau Gamma, helped him get into the Honors Program. 

“Be yourself and find your home,” Rivas said. “If you want to be in Greek life, then you’ll be in Greek life.”