Staff editorial: Right idea, wrong time

The newest group of Alpha Epsilon Pi hopefuls runs the same risk of other fraternities recently denied University recognition. Members of this group, already well into the colonization process, must be careful to follow IFC procedures if they want to come onto GW’s campus, even if it means waiting a year or more before doing so.

The Interfraternity Council, in order to regulate the quality and quantity of how many fraternities are considered “on campus,” has a process for fraternities to gain recognition. This process requires interested groups to make a presentation to the IFC, on which Greek officials decide whether or not to accept them.

On-campus fraternities receive the benefits of inclusion in the University’s vision for a bigger, better Greek-life presence at GW, including support and participation in Greek Week activities. These are matched by the liability and responsibility the groups are be held to, upholding the reputation of GW’s growing Greek community.

IFC officials are very critical of groups that get too far into colonizing without applying for recognition, but Alpha Epsilon Pi is coming to campus one way or another; it would be a shame if it were off campus. Alpha Epsilon Pi should be aware of IFC rules and should slow down their colonization process, especially by waiting to initiate members until applying for and receiving recognition.

Last winter, Sigma Alpha Mu sought recognition after receiving a charter from its national chapter. This caused the IFC not to accept “Sammy.”

Alpha Epsilon Pi’s recent actions closely mirror Sammy’s premature colonizing. With more than 30 dedicated members, the fraternity seems to be subverting IFC authority and going straight University administrators to gain recognition. Although Alpha Epsilon Pi members and leaders might feel they are exempt from normal recognition procedures and are directly approaching the administration, the fraternity needs to follow proper procedures and go through the IFC recognition process.

Even though Alpha Epsilon Pi seems a strong candidate, some officials have said they will not consider new fraternities until spring 2004, after recently recognizing Pi Kappa Alpha. Pike will begin to recruit this spring.

Though the new Alpha Epsilon Pi is drastically different then the one that used to exist on campus, consisting of new students with strong support from their national chapter, the group plans to initiate its “founding fathers” within three or four weeks, and get recognized within this time. This plan is unrealistic within current IFC procedures, which fraternities need to follow to have a favorable shot at becoming recognized. Alpha Epsilon Pi should slow down their colonizing process to fit IFC timetables for coming to campus as a recognized fraternity.

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