Phi Kappa Psi fraternity suspended for two years

Erin Snodgrass

Loyola’s chapter of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity has been suspended for two years after a university investigation into alleged hazing.

The fraternity is now appealing.

The official suspension began on Nov. 15 and was announced at that day’s Panhellenic Council meeting. According to the meeting’s minutes, the fraternity can be reinstated in two years, pending good behavior.

The suspension was handed down to the fraternity after the university’s investigation, which stemmed from a third party allegation.

The fraternity was charged with hazing. The charges are not related to drugs or alcohol, according to the university.

It is Loyola’s policy not to comment on any ongoing conduct investigations, according to Diana Ward, chief student conduct officer and title IX deputy.

The investigation initially ended after the fraternity suspension, but according to Ward, the fraternity submitted an appeal regarding the case on Tuesday, Nov. 28, and the investigation is once again considered ongoing. Loyola’s University Board of Appeals will review the case and render a decision by the end of next week or the beginning of the following week, Ward said.

The University Board of Appeals is comprised of 15 members represented equally by faculty, staff, and students. Those members are appointed by the faculty senate, the vice president of student affairs and assistant provost (who is not eligible to serve on the board), and SGA, respectively.

The Board of Appeals is authorized to receive all appeals of disciplinary decisions from the Student Justice Board and Administrative Hearings. All University Board of Appeals reviews are conducted by a panel of three persons and are decided by a majority vote.

“Generally speaking, if a fraternity is suspended by the Loyola Office of Student Affairs, a confidential letter alerting the executive board members to this would be issued. Further, a confidential letter alerting members to this would be issued to each member by the fraternity’s national organization,” Ward said in an email.

The student code of conduct says when an organization has been suspended, they lose all legal basis for on-campus and university sponsored off-campus events. The organization is no longer able to recruit new members or promote the organization, identity or activities. Refusing to follow these sanctions could possibly result in a delay of reinstatement or permanent charter revocation.

Phi Kappa Psi President Hugh Lynch and Interfraternity Council President Matt Pashby, also a member of the fraternity, both refused to comment, as did multiple current fraternity members and new members.

Christopher Wiseman, Phi Kappa Psi faculty adviser, said he holds the safety, well-being and growth of Loyola students as his top concern.

“I take very seriously the accusations against members of the fraternity, and I support the full investigation that has been pursued by Loyola Student Affairs staff and the national fraternal organization. I am confident that justice will be served by the process,” Wiseman said in an email.

Interim Provost David Borofsky said the university’s investigation has been thorough.

“We are confident that the process is proceeding with the best interests for the health and welfare of all our students,” Borofsky said.

The allegations come after a national crackdown on Greek life at several prominent universities, most notably at LSU, Pennsylvania State and Florida State after hazing-related deaths earlier this year.

Phi Kappa Psi has not been immune to these issues, as a student at Texas State died on Nov. 13 after an off-campus event. Texas State shut down all Greek Life on campus.

The national headquarters of Phi Kappa Psi have refused several requests for comment, including a voicemail, multiple emails and an email conversation with a spokesman who said there would be a response to questions that was never received.

Sean Brennan contributed to this report