The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Thursday, April 25, 2024 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

University affairs committee to hear plan for Greek reform

Winston Crisp’s plan to reform the Greek system has come a long way since he received his marching orders from the Board of Trustees in November.

Crisp, the vice chancellor for student affairs, left several issues unclear at the board’s January meeting. He proposes to fill in those blanks today by recommending higher grade point average standards for Greek organizations, a restructuring of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and a mandatory recruitment period in the spring, among other measures.

The proposed changes are consistent with an attitude members of the University affairs committee of the board have expressed for months — a greater focus on academics for Greeks and more options for freshmen entering the Greek system.

Crisp, who could not be reached for comment Tuesday, will present the plan to the committee today.

Among the most concrete changes is the higher GPA standard.

All Greek organizations will be required to maintain an average GPA of 2.7, as opposed to the current standard of 2.5. Organizations that recruit members in the fall will be required to maintain an average GPA of 2.9.

Brent Macon, president of the Interfraternity Council, said the change will not have immediate implications but was symbolic of a devotion to academic performance. Macon said he knows of only one fraternity with an average GPA less than 2.9. He added that the increase was intended to be modest.

“We wanted to set a number that was a significant improvement to show our dedication to improvement in the academic area,” he said. “At the same time, we didn’t want to set an unrealistic standard.”

The plan also revamps the role of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life. The office’s traditional disciplinary role will be stripped.

In the new plan, the judicial boards in each council will receive training and support from the judicial programs officer in the office of the dean of students. Policy enforcement will become the responsibility of the dean of students office.

Macon said the change is intended to correct a problem that stems from the office’s difficult task of “wearing two hats,” referring to the office’s dual role as advocate and disciplinarian.

“It’s hard to be adjudicator and an advocate for the same fraternity,” Macon said.

The new plan will also move the office from the Student and Academic Services Building to the south wing of Granville Towers.

The main requirement levied by the board in November was that all Greek organizations offer a spring alternative to fall recruitment. Crisp’s plan satisfies the demand, but the issue could pose a problem to sororities, said Lindsey Stephens, president of the Panhellenic Council.

She said the change is unnecessary for sororities because the Panhellenic Council already holds an informal spring recruitment to allow chapters with fewer members to grow in size.

“We prefer spring recruitment to be informal because formal rush is a very time-consuming process,” she said. “I’m sure the board will be willing to listen and have a constructive conversation to make the best possible decision for the girls in the chapter, as well as the new recruits.”

Bob Winston, chairman of the board, said he has been impressed with Crisp’s progress so far.

“During my conversations with Winston over the last six to nine months, I’ve been very pleased with the direction we’re headed and the way that he’s trying to be inclusive by using a lot of input from a lot of different sources.”

Contact the University Editor at university@dailytarheel.com.

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.

Special Print Edition
The Daily Tar Heel's Collaborative Mental Health Edition