IFC recommends Beta re-recognition

by Angie Yang | 11/30/10 11:00pm

After a two-year trial period, the Inter-Fraternity Council has recommended that the College re-recognize Beta Alpha Omega fraternity, formerly Beta Theta Pi fraternity, according to IFC President Tyler Brace '11.

Beta was derecognized in December 1996 following a series of disciplinary breaches throughout the early 1990s but returned to campus as a local fraternity in 2008. Brace said that Beta cannot continue to exist at Dartmouth without re-recognition from the College.

"We looked at their record over the past year," Brace said. "Have they shown their ability to maintain themselves? Did they interact well with other fraternities? Did they make a positive contribution to campus life? They did pretty well. They deserve to come back."

The College will decide whether to re-recognize Beta early in Winter term, Beta President Carter Scott '11 wrote in an e-mail to The Dartmouth.

"[W]e appreciate the support of the IFC, and look forward to the official re-recognition early in the Winter term," Scott wrote in the e-mail.

Brace said the IFC provided a very strong recommendation, but that the College will not necessarily re-recognize the fraternity based on the IFC's recommendation.

A group of Beta alumni reached an agreement with the Office of Residential Life on re-recognition in December 2007, The Dartmouth previously reported. The agreement stipulated that the new installment of Beta at Dartmouth must be connected to a national organization in order to be given College recognition.

The national Beta Theta Pi organization retracted the local chapter's charter following its de-recognition, The Dartmouth previously reported.

Beta has had "a great deal of contact with Beta national," but is "no longer active with the national," Scott wrote.

Beta's return created significant controversy on campus, as it displaced Alpha Xi Delta sorority from its physical plant. AZD had leased the property at Six Webster Avenue from Beta's alumni group for 10 years, The Dartmouth previously reported.

The situation sparked discussion of gender relations on campus and led to a march of 200 students from the property to Parkhurst Hall, where students petitioned former College President James Wright for more gender neutral social spaces at the College, The Dartmouth previously reported.

AZD relocated to a new house, constructed and owned by the College, at Seven East Wheelock Street at the beginning of Fall 2009, The Dartmouth previously reported.

In 1991, 10 Beta members were found guilty of abducting and tormenting a member of Chi Gamma Epsilon fraternity, whom they bound to a chair and doused with water.

In 1996, a Beta member tackled a Sigma Nu fraternity member on the lawn of The Tabard Coed fraternity. When a member of The Tabard stepped outside in response to the commotion, several Beta members shouted racist and homophobic epithets at him.

Beta was permanently de-recognized when campus officials discovered a keg in the house after a fire alarm went off while the house was on a prolonged probation for previous offenses.

Immediately following the organization's separation from Dartmouth, the alumni corporation began negotiations with the College regarding the fraternity's potential return to campus, The Dartmouth previously reported.