Calvin Daniels '96, an intern for Dean of Residential Life Mary Turco, recently presented a proposal to campus leaders calling for more diverse programming within the Greek system.
Daniels, who is the president of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity, said Turco hired him at the beginning of this term to help "sharpen the image" of the Coed Fraternity Sorority system in light of accusations that there is not enough diversity within the system.
Daniels said the objective of the proposal, titled "Effective Diversity Programming in the CFS System," is to "gather ideal programming" that will encourage heterogeneity throughout the College campus by reforming the CFS system.
Daniels co-wrote the proposal with Health Services researcher John Pryor.
Well-intentioned CFS programs "have sometimes been lacking in taste and sensitivity to multiculturalism," according to the proposal.
"We're aiming to promote diversity campus-wide" by using the Coed Fraternity Sorority Council to "bring together different social groups with a range of backgrounds and interests," Daniels said.
Previous attempts at "diversity programming" within the CFS system have resulted in offending and demeaning the very groups they were intended to establish an understanding with, Daniels said.
The proposal recommends that the College invite a "well-respected and already proven effective speaker to the College to address the community and the CFS leadership in particular."
Such a program would have two "phases," according to the proposal -- an all-day workshop for CFS leaders that would take place early in Winter term soon after new Greek officers are elected and the implementation of diversity programs by CFS organizations within their own houses.
A 1993 report by the Committee on Diversity and Community at Dartmouth -- a committee looking at diversity at the College -- raised many questions about race relations at the College and in the Greek system.
The report said the Greek system has a negative impact on diversity, and called for a "thorough examination" of the system.
According to Daniels' proposal, funds for any Greek diversity programming would be paid for by the CFS Committee on Diversity in Programming, an already existing body that has $4,000 set aside for such efforts.
The proposal states the diversity programming will have a "campus-wide" impact, because CFS programs are open to the entire Dartmouth community.
However, active participation across the entire Dartmouth community in diversity programming is difficult to account for, according to Dean of Student Life Holly Sateia.
"I think that as a community we need to talk about the benefits of diversity, not necessarily figure out ways to accommodate it," Sateia said.
"In terms of time outside the classroom, fraternities definitely have an impact on student life," Sateia said. "A lot of students see them as a social option. We need to consider whether or not their memberships mirror our community. If they don't, then why not?"
In considering diversity it is crucial to create an atmosphere in which members of the Dartmouth community can truly appreciate the unique qualities that students bring to the campus, Sateia said.
"There is not one Dartmouth experience. The variety of the different experiences is really what goes into making up the fabric of the place."