Sexual misconduct, alcohol abuse and the culture of fraternities and sororities led to the suspension of Greek life in colleges across the nation.
As of April 1, 2019, the University of Texas Arlington suspended all Greek life. During this suspension, all fraternities and sororities must not host or participate in social events, including philanthropic events. The 31 sorority and fraternity organizations at UTA will be able to participate in limited events like chapter business meetings and community service projects, but these events must be permitted prior to coordination by the Student Life or the Fraternity and Sorority Life Office.
However, this is not the first time UTA has had to suspend Greek life. Last year, two UTA fraternity members were suspended, and one was investigated for alcohol infraction. In March of 2018, Sigma Phi Epsilon was suspended for two years for hazing and providing alcohol access to minors. Phi Delta Theta was suspended for an unregistered event that allowed access to alcohol to minors in 2018.
Texas Woman’s University currently has 13 Greek life organizations that must adhere to the “Anti-Hazing” policy, found on the Greek life website. This policy states that TWU has a no tolerance policy towards hazing. “It is important that all Greek organizations have read and abide by first, the Texas Hazing Law and TWU’s Hazing policy,” states the website.
Under the Texas Hazing Law, any type of physical brutality, whipping, calisthenics, severe mental illness, beating, threats, striking, shame, branding, humiliation, sleep deprivation, alcoholic beverage and the consumption of any food or liquid that can subject the student to any physical or mental harm are is prohibited. There are also two offenses; personal and organization. Any offense under these sections will result in a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not exceeding $1,000. Any offense that causes a death is also a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000, confinement in jail or both.
Former TWU Sigma Sigma Sigma member and third year Child Development pre-Occupational Therapy major Marissa Newell expressed her feelings about the incidents that took place at UTA involving Greek life. “Greek life should be held accountable for their actions just like any other organization,” said Newell.
When asked about her experience in Greek life at TWU, Newell explained she really enjoyed her experience. “However, I would only recommend it for the incoming college freshman. Your priorities change the older you get, and the members only end up staying for about two years,” said Newell.