by Echelle Avelar
Delta Sigma Phi’s recognition as an organization at the University of La Verne was revoked by the Greek Review Board last Thursday.
Notice of the decision was formally written in a letter and placed in President of Delta Sigma Phi, Mike Lopez’ box on Monday.
Executive board members of Delta Sigma Phi were brought to the board not only because of mishaps during Greek Week, but as Melissa Jaunal, coordinator of student programs and chair of Greek Review Board stated, “They were going to be called into Greek Review anyways, because of the incidents during Greek Week it just sped up the process.”
“I think we were judged harshly. I think their decision was premature. Our case hasn’t been heard. We understand we need to make changes in our organization, but we can’t do it if we aren’t given an opportunity,” said Lopez about the ruling.
Dr. Ruby Montaño-Cordova, associate dean of student affairs, said, “We made a decision to have them come into Greek Review prior to the incident at Chaparral (Bowling Alley). The events that occurred were just other issues that we needed to deal with.”
Issues that were discussed at the meeting were history of repeated policy violations, particularly risk management; lack of control of members; hazing; lack of chapter leadership; uncontrolled use and abuse of alcohol during chapter events; poor representation of the Greek community; no history of formalized scholarship program; no philanthropic/community service program, current or past; no formalized leadership program, current or past; the incident occurring on April 22, during Greek Week at Chaparral Lanes in San Dimas; and the Inter-Fraternity Sorority Council (IFSC) revoking Delta Sigma Phi’s membership on April 23.
Although Lopez said that he did take some responsibility for some of the items listed, specifically, lack of control of members, there were some “definite contradictions” concerning some of the other items.
“You can’t control 30 people doing 30 different things,” Lopez said, referring to the incident at the Chaparral Bowling Lanes.
But, he said, “We have not had any policy violations.” He also said that the Review Board was wrong concerning “lack of leadership” which, Lopez said, “specifically means me.”
A letter written by the committee to Lopez stated, “It was apparent to us that Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity has not been a positive contributor to ULV for a number of years. On the whole, the group does not reflect the values of the University of La Verne nor supply any feeling of responsibility toward the University community.
“Indeed when asked what contribution the Fraternity has made, the only concrete item you cited to us was that the Fraternity was known for giving good parties. The Fraternity has been granted many ‘second’ chances and has failed to effect a change,” the letter said.
Members of the Greek Review Board are Jaunal; IFSC President Joseph Martinez; Montaño-Cordova; Don Morel, head football coach and faculty representative; and Dr. Loretta Rahmani, dean of student affairs.
Montaño-Cordova said all but one member of the board agreed with the decision.
With the loss of recognition on campus, Delta Sigma Phi will no longer be allowed to use the ULV name in conjunction with anything having to do with the fraternity, seek or receive funding as an organization by the Associated Students Federation (ASF) Forum, utilize campus facilities at no charge for activities or meetings, receive invitations to participate as a group in campus events or participate in campus membership recruitment.
When asked what actions the fraternity would take, Lopez responded by saying, “We are meeting with [President] Steve Morgan and we are going to try and prove to him why Greek Review and IFSC were premature. We are going to contact our alumni and ask our national for advice.”
President Morgan said, “I am going to look over the information. I have started that review. I will give all the information careful review and will also talk to members of the Greek Review Board about their process and their findings and I will notify Mike in writing of my decision by next Wednesday.”
Said President Morgan of Lopez’s allegations that some of the items brought against them were false, “I didn’t expect the Delts to agree with all of the findings of the Greek Review Board. I don’t recall reversing a decision made by a University appeals committee. I told Mike this was obviously a very serious decision that, in my opinion, was not reached in haste. It was reached after careful deliberations of the information.”
“We also are having a meeting at the Rock tomorrow [Wednesday]. We want students to come out and show support and let their voices be heard,” said Lopez.
The rally at the Rock which began Wednesday morning at 10:30, was one of the steps Delta Sigma Phi said they had to do to show their disagreement with the decision by the Greek Review Board.