Phi Delta Alpha readies for rerecognition process

by Kaitlin Bell | 5/21/02 5:00am

Phi Delta Alpha fraternity faces a good chance of being rerecognized next fall, as long as it complies with all guidelines set by the Office of Residential Life, former Phi Delt brothers told the Dartmouth.

The president of Phi Delt's alumni corporation met with Dean of Residential Life Martin Redman last Thursday to discuss the fraternity's prospects for rerecognition, the former Phi Delt brothers said.

Based on reports they received from the corporation president, the meeting went well, and Dean Redman was optimistic about Phi Delt's prospects of being rerecognized.

Dean Redman declined to comment, stating in an email that if Phi Delt were to apply next fall, "a rerecognition process would be instituted."

If approved, Phi Delt will conduct winter rush next year for the Class of 2005, former Phi Delt brother Ben Steele '02 said, adding that part of the application for rerecognition will likely be a rush guidelines proposal.

By next year, all former brothers will have graduated, so Phi Delt alumni will return to campus to hold rush, Steele said.

Although Dean Redman has been uncharacteristically tight-lipped about his dealings with Phi Delt's corporation, the College has conducted an audit of the fraternity's physical plant and has made recommendations for summer repairs, an action that suggests it intends to reinstitute Phi Delt's official status.

Phi Delt was derecognized in March 2000 for violating College Fraternity and Sorority Council regulations. The house is eligible to apply for rerecognition the first day of Fall term 2002.

The CFS Judicial Committee found Phi Delt guilty of serving alcohol to underage students, tolerating drug use, practicing "dirty" rushing, providing false information to the College about rush and failing to take action when four of its members broke into Chi Gamma Epsilon fraternity, stole property and started a fire in December 1999.

Although Phi Delt is not allowed to function officially as a college organization, it continues to hold informal parties on "big week-ends" when alumni brothers are on campus, Steele said.

The College does not permit Phi Delt to have open parties, but because alumni own the house, they are allowed to hold private gatherings, said David Tarr '02, another former brother.

Nevertheless, Phi Delt is conscious about keeping a low profile.

"Zete doesn't have anything to lose because they were permanently derecognized," Steele said. "But we make sure to abide by all the regulations the College set for us -- we thought the best thing to do would be to ride out our derecognition and then apply next fall."

Several students contacted by The Dartmouth said Phi Delt held one such party on Saturday of Green Key. They estimated that anywhere from 30-75 people may have been in attendance. Steele said that no more than 30 or 35 people were present, all of them "alums and friends of alums."

Tarr added that he and other former brothers are allowed in the house to do maintenance work.

Tarr and Steele were hopeful about Phi Delt's prospects for rerecognition.

"Taking the administration's word for what they say, and considering we've done everything they've asked us to do, I'd think we have a good chance of being rerecognized," Tarr said.

"I don't think [Dean Redman] ever wanted to kill us -- it was never his intention to permanently throw us off, he just wanted to wait until everybody who was a brother had graduated," Steele said.