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Interfraternity Council self-imposes temporary freeze on activity

Mon, 03/12/2018

LAWRENCE – The Interfraternity Council at the University of Kansas today announced a self-imposed temporary freeze on activities for the 24 fraternities it governs.

As part of the freeze, the IFC has committed to working with university officials to strengthen oversight and address systemic behavioral issues in the wake of multiple IFC fraternities being investigated by their national organizations and the university.

The IFC seeks to use the freeze to develop a strategic plan that includes higher standards for health, safety, wellness, self-governance, new member development and recruitment.

Under the freeze, all social activities will be paused. Only chapter meetings, philanthropic events and service events are allowed. Fraternity members who live in fraternity houses may continue to live in those houses.

“The University of Kansas has a proud tradition of greek life, and IFC chapters are integral to the KU community and the development of the men involved in them,” said Daniel Lee, IFC president. “But it has become clear there are significant and systemic conduct problems in the IFC community that we must address, and we must address them now. This freeze is a way for us to pause and do some honest introspection about who we are and how we can live up to our standards of fraternal excellence. We owe this to our members and the entire KU community. We are optimistic our community will stronger, healthier and more inclusive due to this evaluation.”

IFC will work with university leaders to determine the length of the freeze and the conditions for it to be lifted. No timetable has been set, but Lee said a reasonable goal would be for IFC to lift the freeze by the end of the spring semester in May.

“The greek community makes important and valued contributions to our university,” said Chancellor Douglas A. Girod. “Many students have a great experience in fraternity life, do the right things and engage in meaningful philanthropy, service and leadership. Even so, there are systemic problems related to student conduct within our IFC community that we must address. I commend IFC for taking ownership of these problems by self-imposing this freeze. The university stands ready to support and partner with student leaders to improve and enhance Greek life at KU.”

Lee called on all IFC stakeholders to work together to use the freeze to address problems.

“We need to work on this together,” Lee said. “That includes IFC leaders, fraternities, national organizations and alumni partnering to create real change.”

KU's greek community comprises 47 sororities and fraternities, each affiliated with one of four governing councils – the IFC, the National Pan-Hellenic Council, the Multicultural Greek Council and the Panhellenic Association. Today’s announcement affects only IFC chapters.

Freezes on fraternity activity have become increasingly common nationally. Within the past year, students or administrators have enacted freezes at Indiana University, the University of Idaho, Florida State University, Penn State University, The Ohio State University, the University of Michigan and Texas State University.

KU does not discuss ongoing investigations into student conduct. A list of final sanctions imposed on student organizations is available at studentaffairs.ku.edu/orgconductreport.

IFC has created an FAQ document with additional information for fraternities.

For additional information, contact IFC leadership at ifcpresident.ku@gmail.com.



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