The Interfraternity Council voted last month to accept Pi Kappa Alpha on campus for the fall, and another will be re-considered in December after breaking recruitment rules.
Three fraternities – Alpha Phi Delta, Pi Kappa Alpha and Sigma Alpha Mu – made proposals to the IFC in March.
“I felt very confident in our presentation and proposals,” said Pi Kappa Alpha Expansion Coordinator Justin Buck.
Buck said he thought Sigma Alpha Mu would have an advantage because the fraternity already has an interest group on GW’s campus.
Twenty-five freshmen colonized a Sigma Alpha Mu chapter on campus this spring without University or IFC recognition. The group was put on probabtion.
The historically Jewish fraternity has had two previous stays at GW and left for the last time due to a lack of interest, Sigma Alpha Mu Regional Governor Ben Pearlman said in a previous interview.
Leaders of Pi Kappa Alpha, found out last week that the IFC chose to recommend them for recognition in the fall.
Director of Student Activities Laura Tadeucci must approve the group and then recommend the fraternity to Mike Gargano, associate vice president of Student and Academic Support Services. Vice President of Student and Academic Support Services Robert Chernak, Gargano and Student Judicial Services review the fraternity’s history at GW and other campuses.
The University is in the process of reviewing Pi Kappa Alpha’s “track record,” Gargano said.
The group was recognized from 1941 to1965 and left campus due to “inadequate membership,” Buck said in a previous interview. The fraternity then returned to campus in 1990 and was suspended in 1997 after the hospitalization of a pledge who “had drunk copious amounts of alcohol” at a pledge event, according to Hatchet reports.
“SJS, as far as I know, has straightened out everything with (Pi Kappa Alpha’s) judicial history,” IFC President Anthony Morris said.
Morris said he does not expect further expansion for the fall, but the group will vote again on Sigma Alpha Mu in December.
“From my perspective, it (expansion) should always be considered as a viable option,” Gargano said.
University and IFC officials said they see Sigma Alpha Mu’s already-formed group as a blight on the Greek-letter system.
“It’s not the size of the group, it’s the quality of the group,” Gargano said. “They recruited illegally.”
The organization is currently under “probationary status” until December and can be re-considered for spring 2003. Probationary status means the group cannot recruit as a fraternity.
“We’re monitoring how they’re doing as a fraternity on campus,” Morris said. “We’re making them wait so that we can evaluate their progress, and because they colonized without our consent.”
At least one fraternity president is hesitant about expanding GW’s Greek-letter horizons.
Out of 10 voting presidents, Beta Theta Pi President Zak Babcock was the only vote against Pi Kappa Alpha.
“In my opinion, the number-one duty of the IFC is to take care of its member chapters. Expansion was not the way to do that at this time,” Babcock said. “I feel that there’s a lot of room for growth within the current Greek system.”
Babcock added that smaller chapters needed to grow before other chapters come onto campus. Because of the size of his 31-member fraternity “it was not sensible for us to vote for expansion.” Some fraternities, like Kappa Sigma, have as many as 80 members.
The IFC wants “people who are able to control themselves and do the things that we expect a Greek organization to be able to do without involving the IFC,” Phi Kappa Psi President Karl Crow said. “They’re going to be able to police themselves. We don’t think we’ll have the same problems that have come up in the past.”
Pi Kappa Alpha is also trying to colonize at the University of California- Irvine and Boston University and come back to Loyola Marymount University.