UC Santa Cruz Dismisses Fraternity Over Member’s Death
The University of California, Santa Cruz has dismissed its chapter of the Theta Chi fraternity following an investigation into an off-campus death of one of its members last year, the Santa Cruz Sentinel reported.
Founded in 1856, Theta Chi is one of the oldest fraternities in North America. It currently has more than 185,000 members.
In accordance with the dismissal, Theta Chi will no longer be officially recognized by UC Santa Cruz and can no longer organize or recruit new members. One student member has also been dismissed from campus, and others may face serious disciplinary actions.
Though the university didn’t elaborate on the incident leading to the death of the student, University chancellor George R. Blumenthal, in an email to campus community members, alluded to a culture of “deeply appalling behavior,” including drug use, hazing and more.
“UC Santa Cruz has zero-tolerance for hazing, which is at odds with our community values and against campus policy. All Greek letter organizations receive a full training about this policy and the law at the start of each academic year, and in light of our investigation, we’ve underscored our expectations for all student organizations,” Blumenthal wrote.
Blumenthal also expressed his condolences to the family and friends of the departed student.
Earlier this month, Swarthmore College passed an order that Greek organizations will no longer exist on its campus, denying them any lease space following a report which found serious violations of rules and school policies.
“Patterns of serious misconduct surrounding fraternities are extremely disturbing, and though the fraternities have faced numerous disciplinary actions over the years, significant problems have persisted,” the report found.
Hofstra University recently reported another disturbing incident, where members of the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity forced a dog to drink beer from a beer keg. The university is currently investigating the incident.