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IFC elects its first woman president

By Reuven M. Lerner

Holly L. Simpson '92, a resident of the Women's Independent Living Group, has become the first woman elected to the position of Interfraternity Council president. She, along with six other officers, were voted in during IFC elections last Wednesday.

The other six were: Vice President-elect Clifford B. Rotenberg '92, from Kappa Sigma; Secretary-elect Maria D. L. A. Palafox '92, from WILG; Judicial Committee Chairman-elect Helen D. Shaughnessy '92, from Alpha Phi; Community Relations Chairman-elect Erik R. Tavzel '93, from Sigma Phi Epsilon; Public Relations Chairman-elect Dhananjay R. Ragade '94, from Chi Phi; and Treasurer-elect James F. Miskel III, from Lambda Chi Alpha.

The officers will be formally installed on Dec. 5, but have already been speaking informally about many issues, Simpson said. "Basically, what we want to do is get an agenda for the next year -- projects that officers will want to do, issues that need to be addressed."

Among these issues is an independent living group alcohol policy. Simpson said that "we're thinking about revising our party policy," but she was not sure what kinds of changes would be made. She admitted, however, that "the new federal law and MIT changing their policy" will force a change.

Last year's freshman housing report is also on the new board's agenda. Simpson described an "IFC census," the results of which would be used "to dispel some of the myths about ILGs, and especially some of the assumptions that are made in the freshman housing committee report."

Simpson did not think it especially significant that she was the first woman to hold the post of IFC president. "It says something about fraternities at MIT . . . that the myths about being elitist, chauvinistic and all the typical things are not true -- at least not here. It says something positive about our system."

Outgoing IFC President Miles Arnone '91 also did not think of Simpson's election as an indication of any changes on campus. "It's not good; it's not bad; it just is," he said.

Arnone felt that the most important accomplishments of his term were the response to the freshman housing report, changes in Greek Week, and an increased exchange of information between ILGs.

He called the reorganization of the local chapter of Alpha Epsilon Pi "a big issue," and said that "it'll be a little while before they are accepted on equal footing with everyone else."

He did, however, expect AEPi to eventually return to the IFC. "They will get membership once . . . none of the students that were in the afflicting group are around," he said.

Arnone also called for a change in the alcohol policy, especially in some of the loopholes that currently exist. He said that according to current rules, "underage guests can't drink. . . . [But] there is no mention of underage members of an ILG being prohibited." Arnone also saw the second consecutive dry rush as a success, saying that "people saw they could rush without giving up on anything."