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Greek Organization Agreements for 2019-2020 met with delays


Freshmen prepare to register for fraternity rush during the Greek Orientation Seminar on Sept. 6, 2016, at Alumni Hall in the Indiana Memorial Union. Changes to IU's Greek Organization Agreement have delayed some chapters from signing, disrupting their operations and events. Andrew Williams

Every academic year, greek organizations on campus sign an agreement with the Division of Student Affairs. The agreement outlines rules for the operations of fraternities and sororities on campus and the expectations organizations have to follow to remain active. 

This year the Division of Student Affairs made slight changes and solicited feedback from greek chapters. This process prolonged the release, and there was no set agreement in place when the one from 2018-2019 expired July 31.

“We have been making some changes to the agreement, so we were in the process of soliciting feedback on those changes, and the feedback took much much longer then what we thought,” said Kathy Adams Riester, associate vice provost for Student Affairs. 

This is the fourth year since the agreement has been established. This year the agreement works to address safety concerns from the Division of Student Affairs. Extensive feedback from chapters has delayed some organizations from signing. The chapters that have signed are recognized as official organizations on campus and can fully operate. Signing the agreement also grants chapters certain benefits.

“Benefits include being able to host social events with alcohol on campus, being able to pair with other groups and co-host events,” Riester said. 

Chapters without a signed agreement who planned events involving alcohol could have their events postponed or canceled altogether. Another effect is chapters being unable to pair with other greek organizations for hosting. 

Chapters with completed agreements can organize different aspects of their chapter. The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life provides academic data for organizations so chapters can complete grade reports. 

The office helps work with chapters and Residential Programs and Services to provide housing applications. Chapters who haven’t signed this year's agreement aren’t considered official and therefore won’t be able to access these services until the agreement is in place.

“In order to access those benefits, they have to sign the agreement,” Riester said.

Many chapter heads have signed the agreement and are simply waiting for vetting from advisers and national headquarters. Riester expects all of the chapters on campus to have a completed agreement within the coming weeks.

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