Nine months after they were proposed, the University has dropped
its requests for controversial changes to the Greek system. Vice
President for Student Affairs E. Royster Harper decided to remove
her proposals after talks with students this summer, said Susan
Eklund, interim dean of students.
The proposed changes included moving rush from fall semester to
winter semester, mandating live-in advisors and implementing
substance-free housing in all fraternities and sororities. Harper
said these policies would help to curb hazing and allow time for
students to become “grounded” at the University before
committing to a Greek organization.
At last week’s meeting, the Interfraternity, Panhellenic,
Multicultural and National Pan-Hellenic councils and the University
focused on improving communication between the Greek system and the
Eklund, who is working with student organizations, said the
proposals were dropped because Harper wanted a new approach.
“She’s withdrawn those — we’re starting
from scratch,” Eklund said.
“I think she just thought this would be a more productive
approach than the one expressed last spring, feeling that issues
that she was discussing about the Greek community also existed in
other student groups,” said Eklund. “It seemed like a
better idea to address things together.”
Lauren Herskovic, spokeswoman for the Panhellenic Association,
said she heard the proposals had been dropped, but did not comment
Last week’s meeting with the Greek councils’ heads
was one of many the University has convened with various student
groups. The result of all those meetings is the formation of the
Student Organization and Recognition Advisory Committee.
SOAR will use sub committees to tackle issues ranging from
funding to liability issues. Any student can apply for sub
committee positions and will be chosen by Michigan Student Assembly
and the University.
“We hope to get student membership on all the sub
committees,” Eklund said.
The sub committees and SOAR will have to submit their proposals
to the University by February.
MSA will be working with the University to help implement future
proposals and get students involved in the new phase of relations
between student organizations and the University.
“I think this is one of those opportunities that students
and the administration are working successfully together to make
life easier on student groups that have consistently demonstrated
the ability to follow the rules,” said MSA President Jason