Student Affairs has just released a statement announcing interim suspensions for the Alpha Epsilon Pi, Pi Kappa Alpha, and Psi Upsilon fraternities on Columbia's campus stemming from the NYPD's recent arrests of several members allegedly involved in illegal drug activity in their 114th street brownstones. Recruitment, initiation, and social events must all cease immediately as part of this suspension, and the national chapters for each fraternity have been notified. Full email from Dean Kevin Shollenberger after the jump.
“The Division of Student Affairs has issued an interim suspension of the Iota Chapter of the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity, the Iota Lambda Chapter of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, and the Lambda Chapter of the Psi Upsilon fraternity. The suspension of these organizations is the result of the NYPD’s arrests of several fraternity members who are alleged to have taken part in illegal drug activity within Columbia’s fraternity houses on West 114th Street.
According to Columbia’s Fraternity and Sorority Life Community Standards and Greek Judicial Board Handbook, a fraternity or sorority can be suspended if determined “necessary to promote the best interest” of the chapter and the University. Given the severity of the alleged behavior, we believe these interim suspensions are in the best interest of our community at this time. The three named chapters have been instructed to cease all activities, including and not limited to recruitment, initiation, and social events pending further review. We have notified the chapters’ national organizations about the suspensions.
The Division of Student Affairs will initiate an internal review of the three fraternity chapters and the Intercultural House (ICH), where the alleged behavior also took place. We plan to work closely with student leaders, the fraternity and sorority community (including national organizations), and the ICH to assess the scope of the problem and what reforms may be necessary to address these issues. We envision the involvement of students, administrators, and other members of our campus community in these conversations. Terry Martinez, Dean of Community Development and Multicultural Affairs, will oversee this review.
We remain most concerned about the health and welfare of our students and will utilize this review process as an opportunity to further educate students about their decisions and how they impact our community. In the meantime, information about Columbia’s drug and alcohol policies may be found in Essential Policies for the Columbia Community. Student advisers and Health Services remain resources for students seeking more information or support.
As part of our review, we are also committed to exploring the role of fraternity and sorority life and special interest communities on campus. We look forward to working with students to ensure all recognized organizations provide students with an enriching experience that benefits the University community.
We recognize there will be a number of questions regarding the anticipated duration of the suspension, the review process, potential outcomes, and numerous other factors. While we are not yet in a position to answer these questions, please know we are committed to conducting a timely and thorough review.”
Kevin G. Shollenberger
Associate Vice President for Undergraduate Student Life, Arts and Sciences
Dean of Student Affairs
Columbia College and The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science