By The President of Chi Phi || Contributing Writer
The College Reporter Editorial Staff received the following letter to be published from the most recent President of the Zeta Chapter of Chi Phi, which has recently been suspended from F&M’s campus for five years.
To whom it may concern,
Recently, the Zeta Chapter of Chi Phi has been notified by the school administration of a lengthy suspension, and in fact, we are all relieved.
The reasons behind the Chapter’s suspension do not represent a substantial portion of the problems in Greek life at F&M, or the problems at F&M in general. For the last 2 years we devoted ourselves to improving the Chapter’s image at the College, a task that proved to be pointless. With a biased Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life that serves more as an adversary than an advocate for certain organizations, good deeds go unnoticed, and mistakes become magnified.
Fraternities are subject to house inspections that do not occur at any other type of housing on campus. The second this chapter was under investigation, house inspections stopped. The concern was never safety; inspections are a method of surveillance. Social events are monitored by security guards who are younger than students here, and judged by a person who does not even attend the event. Rather than praising student event monitors for managing risk and making sure people get home safe, the powers that be search for small procedural errors as grounds for punishment. Once again, the concern is not safety, but rather micromanagement. Maybe it’s political, maybe it’s incompetence, but at the end of the day it is unproductive and detrimental for all Greek life.
Prior to F&M’s campus being as divided as it’s ever been, or before common consensus became that “F&M isn’t fun,” or even before we discovered the school’s anemic endowment, juniors and seniors experienced a year or two where they can look back at F&M with fond memories. For the members of the Zeta chapter, these old memories gave us hope. Hope that maybe one day, with proper cooperation with the school, we could help the student body become less divided and happy about their choice to attend F&M. This task, combined with resistance from certain administrators and pointless rules, came with a great deal of stress, especially for leaders like myself. But we had hope. In fact, it gave us a reason to not be miserable here every day. We knew it was unproductive, but we couldn’t stop.
And when we were notified that effective April 29th, 2019 that we would not be eligible to return from suspension until August 1st, 2024, I realized this pointless, rigged fight was over. We could all rest easier at night. We know it’s going to be difficult having something taken away from us, something that we, along with many people on campus cared so much about. However, loss is a part of life. Without loss, you do not grow.
As for us, we will not sulk, because we’re certain that our best days are still ahead of us.
The Former, and Last President of Chi Phi’s Zeta Chapter